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On the Bright Side

February 20, 2014

SUNY Cobleskill cultural arts series kicks off with dance and percussion troupe

College students and community members will have the opportunity to stomp away the winter blues tonight at SUNY Cobleskill’s first event in its Spring 2014 Cultural Arts Series.

Renowned dance and percussion troupe Industrial Rhythm, from New York City, will perform tonight at 7:30 p.m. in the Bouck Theater on SUNY Cobleskill’s campus, organizers said. The event is free, with donations welcomed.

The performance is part of the college’s 3-event Cultural Arts Series, which is put on every fall and spring, according to Brian Kaiser, director of the university’s Center for Community Engagement. Kaiser said the Cultural Arts Series is funded with student activity fees, but is open to the public, as well.

Kaiser, who was in charge of booking Industrial Rhythm, said the dance group performed at SUNY Cobleskill once before, in the Fall of 2011. Because there was such a great turnout, Kaiser said, he decided to bring them back.

“We want to fill a void in our community. It’s rare that this level of entertainment is going to be available in this area at this cost,” Kaiser said. “Generally, a person would have to travel to a metropolitan area to see this quality of entertainment.”

Kaiser said he is looking forward to the performance, which he described as “high-energy” and “clever.” The dancers perform a style of hip-hop similar to the one made popular by the off-Broadway show “Stomp,” Kaiser said, and use everyday items as musical instruments.

Zoilo Ruiz, president and owner of Industrial Rhythm and one of the group’s performers, said the energetic drum and dance show uses objects like trash cans to create a beat, to which the performers dance and perform acrobatics. 

Ruiz said from Manhattan on Wednesday that he was looking forward to coming upstate and performing at the college again. He said Industrial Rhythm performs mostly at corporate events, but is perfect for a college setting as well because of the nature of the show.

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