Revival of Melee offers dance classes for all levels

Juniors Devin Burri and Kelsey Steffens audition for the Melee Fall Show.
Angela Butler & Mimi Barney

Juniors Devin Burri and Kelsey Steffens audition for the Melee Fall Show. (Thao Nguyen)

The Melee Dance Troupe, a long-running dance group at Lawrence University, was revived this Fall Term after a hiatus last year. As a campus organization for the last 20 years, Melee started off as a group of students who decided to get together and hold classes for all types of dance from contemporary to hip-hop. Its founders wanted to celebrate dance as an art form and teach interested Lawrentians different dancing styles.

In the hopes of providing a creative and friendly atmosphere for dancers, choreographers and artists of the Lawrence and the greater Appleton community, the Melee Dance Troupe provides everyone, regardless of the level or dancing experience, the chance to showcase their unique abilities and discover different types of dance.

Furthermore, the troupe performs once a term, showcasing diverse talents at Lawrence. This Fall Term, Melee will be performing on Nov. 17, featuring original choreography by several Lawrence students.

Senior and executive director of Melee Katie Melchior said, “We’ve been working to move Melee into a more inclusive way.” The group invites beginners, professionals, choreographers or anyone looking for a creative outlet to attend various open classes throughout the year.

Recent classes have featured a diverse mix of styles such as folk dancing, Bollywood and Balinese. Melee gives its members the chance to review styles and experiment with new ones, creating an environment that promotes both teaching and learning. Melchior encourages anybody interested to attend, “wherever you are in your dance history, regardless of skill level.”

If you are interested in learning how to dance or want to expand your dance repertoire, Melchior encourages you to check out the public Facebook group “Dance at Lawrence University” to keep up to date on new dance opportunities. Questions about the group should be directed to Melchior or the faculty advisor for the Melee Dance Troupe, Visiting Professor in Dance Rebecca Salzer.