Three Can’t-Miss Collegiate Dance Performances

David Bazemore

In what might be called a perfect storm of dance, all three big S.B. colleges will be offering up performances this weekend. And for not too much cash you can enjoy an elegant, imaginative, and perhaps even quirky evening of dance, all performed by talented young dancers and choreographers, as well as faculty members of these fine institutions.

1) Stories from Africa: The Westmont Windancers, directed by Erlyne Whiteman, offer a program inspired by the experiences of dance students who studied or volunteered in Africa. Along with Whiteman, student choreographer Laura Mercaldo and graduate Leah Benson will present work. Guest artist Linda Kazibwe, raised in Uganda and Kenya, will join in a talkback after Saturday’s performance. The shows take place Thursday, November 20, through Saturday, November 22, at 8 p.m. at Westmont College’s Porter Theatre (955 La Paz Rd.). Tickets are $10 general, $5 students. For information, call 565-7040.

2) SBCC Fall Dance Concert: This evening of dynamic new works will be presented by Artistic Director Jennifer Seigle and faculty members Pamela Lappen and Matthew Nelson, as well as three student choreographers. Joining them will be special guests from the Santa Ana College Dance Touring Ensemble. The one-night-only concert will be held on Saturday, November 22, at 8 p.m. at the Lobero Theatre (33 E. Canon Perdido St.). Tickets are $15 general, $10 student/senior. Call 963-0761.

3) Envision: UCSB’s Fall Dance Concert is directed by Christopher Pilafian, a senior lecturer in the university’s Department of Theater and Dance, and features works by three graduating seniors. The choreographers are all members of the UCSB Dance Company, which later in the year will tour China for the second time alongside Jerry Pearson’s Santa Barbara Dance Theatre. “The work is bringing out the dancers’ strength and challenging them to go deeper into their own process,” Pilafian said. “It’s stretching them, and they are rising to the occasion.” The work of three faculty members, including Pilafian, will also be shown. The show runs Friday, November 21, and Saturday, November 22, at 8 p.m., and Sunday, November 23, at 2 p.m. at UCSB’s Hatlen Theatre. $17 general, $13 student/senior. For tickets, visit


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