ANA SANTOS / THE EAGLE
Navigating the more arts-based organizations on campus can be difficult, especially when they are outnumbered by the equally important but more abundant political clubs and activism organizations. So if you are into music, dance or anything entertainment-based, the Scene offers a comprehensive guide to AU’s arts and entertainment organizations.
Sound of music
AU has four a cappella groups total: the all-male group On a Sensual Note, the all-female group Treble in Paradise and the co-ed groups Dime A Dozen and Blends with Benefits. Each group displays their singers’ talents in individual performances throughout the year (often held in the Kay Center) as well as in the much-hyped annual Acapalooza showcase in April. They also host shows with guest groups from other universities.
The greatest thing about AU’s theater community is the level of quality not only in the Department of Performing Arts but also in student-run troupes such as AU Players and Rude Mechanicals. Performing musical theater, comedy, drama and traditional Shakespeare, AU offers such a multitude of performances that you will never be at a loss for a good show. In addition to the talented students, many of the theater department’s professors and directors play a large role in bringing new and original productions to life at AU’s Katzen Arts Center.
However, if you’re in need of something more raw, there’s always Mission Improv-able, AU’s foremost improv group, whose late night comedy shows are a great way to put off homework.
Shall we dance?
The AU dance community is probably the best representation of the campus’ multiculturalism. The AU Dance Program under the Department of Performing Arts allows students to work with famed choreographers and professors in everything from traditional ballet to African dance. The department holds a showcase every semester, which displays guest choreographers’ work as well as student-choreographed dances.
But it is the great quantity of student dance groups that is really impressive. AU in Motion is the largest student group and teems with new dance styles every year. In last year’s fall showcase, they featured modern, ballet, hip-hop, Bollywood and even dubstep choreography. If you are looking for more niche dance groups, look to Bhangra, Jhoom, Salsa Club, Swing Dance Club, Step 101 and the hip-hop group, RAW Movement. Or if you’re in the mood for some cheer, AU Athletics’ Dance Team diligently performs at pep rallies and sports games.
Big events on campus
Sure, some of those events held on campus can be pretty lame, but organizations such as University Center and Student Union Board make free and fun events their bread and butter. Last year, University Center Events offered biweekly movie screenings of movies like “The Girl with The Dragon Tattoo,” a chocolate-themed festival called Chocofest and laser tag in Bender Arena. SUB frequently hosts free concerts of bands and singers, like the Aug. 24 performance by Howie Day in the Tavern.
Students can produce a TV show or run a radio station, too. ATV and WVAU are AU’s student-run media groups who specialize in TV and radio entertainment on campus. ATV airs online and on channels 2 and 15, with programming that ranges from sitcoms like The American Dream to sports commentary like SportZone. WVAU, whose DJs also write a column in The Eagle, airs online 24/7, giving a healthy dose of all music indie. Both groups are a wonderful showcase of the talents of AU’s budding filmmakers and radio DJs.
For news media alternatives, check out AmWord, AU’s short-form new magazine published twice a semester with an emphasis on arts and culture.
If you are more of a literature enthusiast, there is AmLit, AU’s premiere literary magazine. Poets, short story writers, photographers and artists all flock to AmLit, which publishes once a semester, to exhibit their works to the student populace.