Local Students Perform in NSU Dance Recital

Northwestern State University’s Department of Theatre and Dance will present Modern in Motion XI October 19 – 22 at the historic Texas and Pacific Railway Depot on Remembrance Way in Natchitoches.
There are several local students who will perform, including Ashanta Wilson of Leesville, Allyce Richards of Ft. Johnson, and Jennifer Ann of DeRidder.

Performance times are October 19-20 at 6 p.m.; October 21 at 6 p.m. and 8 p.m.; and October 22 at 2 p.m. Tickets to the October 19 Gala performance are $50, which includes a reception after the event at Maglieaux’s Riverfront Restaurant. Admission to all other performances is $10 and $5 for students and senior citizens. Reservations are encouraged as space is limited. To make reservations or get more information, contact head of the Department of Theatre and Dance Brett Garfinkel at (318) 357-5793.
The choreography is by Garfinkel, NSU Professor and Director of Dance Kirstin I. Riehl, and Assistant Professor of Dance Alex McBride.

The Texas and Pacific Railway Depot was constructed in 1927 and closed its doors to passenger rail transportation in the 1960s, encapsulating its segregated entrances and waiting rooms. Today, the structure remains one of the last segregated train stations within Louisiana and has a deep connection to the City’s African American community. In 2019, the City of Natchitoches, who owns the Texas and Pacific Railway Depot, signed a lease with the National Park Service, Cane River Creole National Historical Park granting the park use of the building as a visitor center and headquarters. The Depot will house new park offices, a visitor center and a community lecture hall/theater for the Cane River Creole National Historical Park.

The idea for site-specific events around Natchitoches for Modern in Motion began with “Cage on the Cane” at Beau Jardin which was coupled with a concert in Magale Recital Hall celebrating composer John Cage’s 100th birthday and featuring NSU Associate Professor of Music Theory and Low Strings Paul Christopher and Mark Prince Lee. Modern in Motion has also been performed at The Sweet Cane Inn, The National Center for Preservation Technology and Training, Cane River Brewing Company (now Flying Heart Brewing and Pub), the Fleur de Lis Stage at Natchitoches’ downtown riverbank, the Alumni Plaza on the campus of NSU and twice at the Louisiana Sports Hall of Fame and Northwest Louisiana History Museum.

“One of the main reasons why we chose this space was the history and architecture of the train depot,” said Garfinkel. “The fact that we could get in before any museum displays allows us to use the space in its entirety. The National Park Service has been great to work with.”

For more information on upcoming events from Northwestern State’s Department of Theatre and Dance, go to nsula.edu/theatre.

Photo courtesy of City of Natchitoches