This week, justArts spoke with Rachel Moore ’19 and Akshiti Todi ’19, co-presidents of the Adagio Dance Company.

JustArts: Where does the name Adagio come from?

Rachel Moore: We don’t know what the original founders’ intentions were, but “adagio” is a part of a ballet class. 

JA: What makes Adagio different from other dance and performance groups on campus?

Akshiti Todi: Adagio is different because it’s catered around the person participating. It’s catered to the individual needs of all of our members — they get to choose the level, style and time commitment that they want, so it’s very individualized and it can be modified according to the needs of every single person in our dance company. We don’t have dancer auditions, we have dancer placements. People come and they do a routine, and we place them into different levels. Everybody gets a chance to do what they want and I think that’s what makes us different.

JA: What about your group allows for participants to choose their time commitments?  

RM: The structure of our company is that when you join, you join a dance piece. The piece is run by the choreographer, they hold rehearsals. It’s a weekly rehearsal for one hour, so you can choose to be in one dance piece, or you can choose to be in seven. That’s where you get to control your level of commitment to Adagio.

JA: Do most people who audition already have dance backgrounds?

AT: It depends ... I have a friend who never danced before Brandeis, and then she joined Adagio and now she choreographs very regularly. I feel like it really gives you that platform to explore, and then actually do something because of that, and grow. 

JA: What’s your favorite moment in the play?

EK: I really like the [scenes] where there is someone on the upper level [talking to] someone on the lower level. I think it looks really cool and is really funny. 

JA: What are your responsibilities as co-presidents?

RM: Our main objective is first to set up the semester. We organize placements … we make sure that all the choreographers have the information and the rooms that they need to rehearse. There’s just so many logistical things that go on. Once everyone’s set up for the semester, we work on organizing and producing our semester show. But fortunately, we have six other people on our e-board and they all have their own tasks that they do.

JA: What other kinds of preparation do you have to do for the semester show itself?

AT: We begin with finding a theme for the show. Every semester our show will have a different theme. This year, it’s “Take a chance on dance,” which is a casino theme. We are encouraging people to let go and take a chance on what they love to do.

JA: Anything else you would like to add?

AT: Come see the Adagio show, there are going to be free cookies and free food. It’s gonna be fun!

        —Maya Zanger-Nadis