After weeks of rehearsals, the Windfall Dance Company from Windfall Dancers Inc. performed for the first time at the Lotus World Music and Arts Festival. It was only fitting that there were two anniversaries being celebrated: Lotus’s 25th and Windfall’s 40th.
Tricia Petit, an IU junior and company dancer, said she wasn't nervous in front of the crowd, though. She had a house party planned and ready right after their performance.
“I’m more worried about this party than this performance,” Petit said.
The performance took place in the Big Tent, which was exactly what it sounded like: a big tent. The tent was filled with people, which made it difficult for the performers to dance, but the group made it work. They performed all five of their routines without any real problem, besides cutting a couple moves so they didn’t hit anyone in the audience.
At the end of the last performance, the group bowed, and the audience reacted with claps and cheers.
Windfall Dancers Inc. is a dance company that offers classes to all ages. It is the one of the only dance studios in Bloomington that offers classes to beginning adult dancers, as well as classes in ballet, tap, aerial and more. It is not required to have any sort of experience in order to dance with the organization.
The Windfall Dance Company, which performed at Lotus, is a dance collective currently comprised of seven women. The Company focuses on originally choreographed routines and freestyle contemporary dance.
“It’s a group of like-minded dance artists,” said Jessica Ferguson, the company coordinator for Windfall.
Though it is open to anyone, there are currently no men in the group. The program is free, and all one has to do is audition and be accepted by a majority of the company who will agree on the membership.
The group that danced at Lotus only made up part of the 11 member group. The ages range from college-aged to middle-aged. The oldest member is Kay Olges, who has been with Windfall since 1995. Olges led the group through some rehearsals, and she ran the performance at Lotus on Sept. 29.
All members of the company have experience in dance even though it is not required. Many of them have performed with larger groups, some even traveling the world with dance.
Ferguson has been with the company for about a year and a half. She teaches several classes and has recently founded a Performance Education program in Malaysia. Ferguson worked with the group on almost every rehearsal, making sure everyone looked to be in sync and ready for the Lotus performance.
Ferguson helped coach the group on their routines, and Webb rearranged a routine originally choreographed by two founders of Windfall to fit the song, “Smile” by Glass Animals. The dance had many free-moving parts, and at times, the dancers resembled insects writhing on their backs as if they weren't able to turn over on their own.
Following the performance, the group danced in the Lotus Festival parade. Each member wore a blue dress, a mask, a tiara and a boa. The night ended in a group photo, and the dancers headed their separate ways for the night, ready to prepare for their annual 'Cabaret Night' fundraiser Oct. 20.