Clarion University theatre department’s performance of “Amor Fati” took place this past Thursday through Saturday at the Marwick Boyd Little Theatre. The production was conceived, directed and choreographed by theatre instructor Drew Leigh Williams. Her inspiration for the dance production came from Friedrich Nietzsche’s writings on accepting and learning to love one’s own fate.
The curtain raiser was “Be the Change,” a dance choreographed by Marilouise Michel and her dance repertory class. It was set to a song of the same title by M.C. Yogi, and was about human suffering and “be[ing] the change that you want to see in the world.” The song focused on Mahatma Gandhi and how he changed the world by remaining peaceful in times of struggle.
Amor Fati starred five dancers and eight voice actors that told the story of Nietzsche’s writings through movement on the ground and on silks. The cast traveled to Pittsburgh for lessons on silk dancing, and according to multiple dancers, it was completely different from anything they had done before. Sam Atwell, one of the dancers involved in the production, said, “It’s a lot more movement.” He admitted that it was difficult at times, saying, “You have to condition yourself to be able to meet all of the standards of movement that we’re doing for this.” Being predominately an actor, Atwell said the dance production was different for him in that sense as well. “It’s not so much acting. The biggest tool of expression was my body.”
The dance production was well-received by students and other members of the community. Ellen Bossert, a student at the university said, “I thought it was very diverse. I was exposed to a different side of the arts that I haven’t seen before.” She expressed great appreciation for the silk-dancing and the actors’ determination.