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Friday, June 14, 2024

UF’s Danza Dance Company, a premiere student-run performance dance company, will celebrate 20 years with its Anniversary Showcase on Saturday.

The show will include performances from Danza members as well as a guest performance from IndepenDANCE studio in Gainesville, said Gaby Carballo, the public relations chair on the executive board for Danza.

There is a lot more importance on this showcase in the company because it is the 20th anniversary, Carballo said.

Carballo, a 19-year-old UF theatre and English major, noticed a lot more involvement this semester from an executive member’s perspective because the members know it’s the anniversary, and people are trying to leave their legacies.

Multiple styles of dance are highlighted within the show with every dance member showcasing their strong suits, Carballo said.

When Danza’s executive board was choreographing the finale, they made sure to include multiple dance styles and to showcase how Danza has grown over the past 20 years, she said.

Carballo said she feels a personal connection to this showcase.

“I thought it was really nice that Danza and I have the same birthday,” she said. “We’re both turning 20 this year, so it was really special that I got to be here and be on the executive board and help make sure the show is really special.”

The audience will be able to see how Danza is special in terms of the different styles of dance, Carballo said. Danza doesn’t stop with just one style of dance; there’s many styles in the show.

Carballo personally choreographed a musical theater number for the showcase — something she has never done with Danza before.

To prepare for the anniversary showcase, the dancers rehearse every Monday from 7 to 10 p.m. with one member teaching a class at the beginning and everyone working on their dances in the second half of rehearsal.

“We have all been working super hard to show everyone how great Danza is,” Carballo said.

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The 20th Anniversary Showcase is different from previous showcases mainly because it is advertised differently, said DiDi Paulino, a 21-year-old UF health education and behavior major. Danza is focusing a lot on their alumni connections for this specific showcase.

“We are just celebrating 20 years of this organization, which is a great milestone,” said Paulino, who will be serving as Danza’s president starting Fall 2018.

This will be Paulino’s sixth semester in Danza, and she believes Danza is special because it acts as a stress reliever.

“This event is very special because I think a lot of times college students don’t really have a stress reliever,” Paulino said. “Twenty years ago people brought this organization to campus as a stress reliever and as an activity that they can do in college to help students physically, emotionally and mentally.”

This show represents the members appreciating their past, enjoying the present and looking at the future of the company with hope, according to the Facebook event for the anniversary showcase.

People coming to the showcase should expect to see some great dance moves and a lot of love and passion for the dance company, Paulino said.

Danza’s 20th Anniversary Showcase will be held at the Phillips Center for the Performing Arts at 7 p.m. Saturday. The doors open at 6:30 p.m. The show is free and open to the public.

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