Dance competition gets dramatic in KILL ME NOW

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The Department of Theatre & Dance presents an original take on the dance competition show phenomenon with KILL ME NOW.

Audiences become part of a dramatic and theatrical version of a live reality show when the Department of Theatre & Dance at Rowan University presents Kill Me Now: The Ultimate Dance Competition Show. Performances are December 6, 7 and 8, 2012, at 8 pm in Eynon Ballroom, located in the university’s Chamberlin Student Center.

A live dance competition game show modeled after such popular TV reality series as "Dancing with the Stars," "So You Think You Can Dance" and "Dance Wars," Kill Me Now is a fast-paced, comic, immersive experience that questions and confronts our willingness and even desire to be judged and to compete for some ultimate “prize,” while at the same time relentlessly judging and condemning others. What begins as a recognizable (if extreme) dance competition morphs into a rigorous and ruthlessly honest self-examination that strips away the performers’ personas until judges confront the contestants directly and the real battle begins.

“The exciting interactive atmosphere seduces the audience in a satiric journey that leads to the ultimate destruction of the contestants, whose lust for fame is weighed against their will to live,” notes director/choreographer and faculty member Melanie Stewart.

Kill Me Now features eight competition characters and judges, along with a host, a scorekeeper, a DJ and the Kill Me Now Dance Crew. At each performance, audiences will cast votes to choose the winner of that night’s competition. The show is a devised work written by John Clancy in collaboration with Stewart. It was originally developed by Melanie Stewart Dance Theatre and premiered at the 2008 Live Arts Festival. The Rowan edition is a newly-imagined show with creative contributions from the entire company.

The student cast includes Heather Arroyo of Perth Amboy, Dane Eissler of Franklinville, Chris Halasz of Rockaway, Claire Kane of Wildwood, Kaitlin Kemp of Fredericksburg, VA, Katie Knoblock of West Deptford, Allyn Merida of North Bergen, Joe Napolitano of Dover, DE; Dana Orange of Baltimore, MD; and Andy Spinosi of Haddonfield. The are joined by members of the Dance Extensions Company, under the direction of Paule Turner.

Stewart is joined by a creative team that includes set designer Joseph Napolitano, costume designer Stephanie Nichols, lighting designer Robert Thorpe, sound designer David Cimetta, dramaturge Anthony Hostetter and photographer/videographer Joe Grasso.

Eynon Ballroom is located in the Chamberlain Student Center on the campus of Rowan University, Route 322 in Glassboro, NJ. Tickets are $15, general admission; and $10 for seniors/non-Rowan students/alumni. Rowan students and staff are admitted free with valid ID. For tickets and information, visit rowan.tix.com or call the box office at (856) 256-4545.

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