Orchesis qualifies for state festival

By Chris Nush, Assistant A&E Editor

“Almost Never Clearly Obscure,” a dance piece choreographed by Robert Perales, senior, has been selected for the Illinois State High School Dance Festival.

Perales and Melody Beltran, junior, performed, the piece at the Orchesis Main Showcase, “We Have Arrived.”

“It’s completely amazing and shocking to have been selected for State,” Perales said. “I know that my partner, Melody, and I have worked incredibly hard, but I didn’t know we would see this much success.”

This has been both Perales and Beltran’s first year in Orchesis.

“Its really crazy, its my first year so I didn’t think that I would be able to do anything like this especially since I didn’t think I’d be chosen to do the duet with Robert because he’s so talented,” Beltran said. “It’s just really surreal and its really cool that they chose us to do this.”

According to Perales, the piece is about the inability to love.

“In the piece, I portray a character that turns to drugs and alcohol as a way to escape, but by doing so he hurts his partner. This dance symbolizes the pain that results from two people who can no longer love each other,” Perales said. “Melody knew from the start that this story meant a lot to me, and over time, I think it meant a lot to her too.”

According to Perales, developing the dance came naturally, which allowed him to venture off into new territory in terms of choreography.

“I’m really proud of whatever the kids do,” Diane Rawlinson, Orchesis director, said. “Often at the State level they don’t select really small group pieces so to have two small groups selected at the State level is pretty exciting.”

The Illinois State High School Dance Festival will be held May 11 at Maine West High School in Des Plaines, Ill.

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