Scholars at Osseo Senior High School (OSH) recently had the opportunity to attend a show by the dance group SHAPESHIFT, presented by the Department of Educational Equity and R.E.A.L. Talk. The dancers performed their show Grey Skies Blue, a story about emotional themes of social injustice, addiction and betrayal told through dance and music.
SHAPESHIFT is a diverse collective of eight accomplished dancers, combining hip-hop moves and other dance styles with the lyricism of contemporary movement to illuminate the human experience. SHAPESHIFT has traveled around the country to perform in various venues. OSH served as the first school in their SHAPESHIFT in Schools program, bringing their story to schools across the country.
Grey Skies Blue told the story of a group of diverse youth who face a painful, life altering experience when one of their African American friends encounters a policeman, a young woman who refuses to be defined by her family’s history of addiction and a promising relationship that is challenged by deceit. The powerful performance evoked emotional responses in the audience, from laughter to tears.
Following the show, OSH scholars and staff members in the audience had the opportunity to ask the dancers questions, including where they learned to dance, what category of dance they each specialize in, where inspiration from the show came from, what they dream to accomplish with dancing someday and what made them turn to dancing.
“Sometimes words can’t explain how you’re feeling, but dance can,” one of the dancers told the audience.
To learn more about SHAPESHIFT and where to catch one of their shows, visit their website.