The FAMU Strikers, along with Mahogany Dance Theatre, presented “Welcome to Hollywood” Saturday. Many students agree that both dance troupes delivered powerful and enthusiastic performances.
The show began with an inspirational dance scene from Mahogany. Dressed in all white, the group danced to the song “The Battle is not Yours.”
Della Mitchell, a 19-year-old freshman pre-pharmacy student from Atlanta, said she particularly liked the scenes that incorporated gospel music.
“I liked the inspirational dancing,” she said. “Overall it was a good show, but the inspirational dancing was something different.”
The Strikers also performed an inspirational scene that received a standing ovation from the audience. “That scene was very good,” said Marlinda Long, a 19-year-old sophomore pharmacy student from Bloomfield Hills, Mich. “You could feel the emotion as they danced.”
There were 12 scenes in the show, with an intermission. During the intermission two clothing lines, Freedom Theory and Amore, were modeled.
“Freedom Theory is an alternative to urban wear,” said Kianta Key, a 20-year-old nursing student from Atlanta, who also serves as the marketing director for Freedom Theory. “We wanted to show students the first of our clothing line.”
James Jeffries, a 20-year-old English student from Atlanta, is the artist and owner of Amore`. “Amore` clothing represents love, passion and eternity. Amore` is about loving what you do and having passion for it,” Jeffries said.
One scene that stood out for many attendees was the tribute scene to Nefertiti Williams, a FAMU student that was murdered in November 2006.
“The scene for Nefertiti was good. It was good that they thought about her,” Mitchell said.
Beside dancing there was a political side to the show as well. During an introduction to special guests at the show, Shepiro Hardemon, artistic director and founder of the Strikers, proclaimed to students, “not one of your A&S fees paid for this show.”
This comment was made in response to the accusations that the Strikers have been using A&S fees to fund events that students are charged for.
In one of the final dance scenes, as dancers flooded the stage and threw out money during the song “Make it Rain,” a dancer held up a sign stating “these are not A&S funds.”
The last scene of the show was dedicated to the ladies. A note on the program gave a disclaimer of “female audience recommended.” During this scene many of the Strikers’ characteristic moves were showcased and a portion of the scene was danced in towels.
Not only did many audience members give the show good ratings, but members of the Strikers and Mahogany felt as though they performed well also.
Darra Demps, a 20-year-old senior English student from Miami and president of Mahogany, said she was ecstatic about the show.
“We did an excellent job,” Demps said. “We had a lot of energy. Despite all of the trials and tribulations we put on an excellent show.”
The Strikers said they also felt they delivered an exceptional show.
“Everything went over well,” said Robert Little, a 21-year-old junior business education student from Atlanta. “All of our work from the semester came together.”