Stardust: The story of a gay, black teen told through dance

Rachel Rubino

Next week, renowned choreographer David Roussève and his dance team REALITY will be performing Stardust at Lafayette.

Roussève credits his work’s flair to his Creole background and an eclectic mixture of life experiences. His experimental, thrilling style is a reflection of his time as a Princeton undergraduate, a soap opera actor, and a gay man who lived through the stigma driven age of HIV/AIDS. A fascinating range of emotions are present within his creations.

Incorporating abstract urban imagery and romantic 1950s ballads, Stardust focuses on the marginalization of a black gay youth. The performance’s distinct narrative aspect centers on the outcast’s search for intimacy and understanding within our technology-obsessed culture. Various reviews praise the dancer’s movements as laden with desperation, providing an overall transcending vibe to the show. Ellis Finger, Director of Cultural Programs, commented on Roussève’s spellbinding presence as a “lonely gay youth, desperate for compassion,” and turning it “into exquisite poetry.”

The recognition Roussève has received for his previous works speaks to the excitement to welcome him on the Lafayette campus. A winner of the Bessie Award for distinguished achievement in New York theater and dance, and earning the Guggenheim Fellowship along with multiple NEA fellowships, Roussève does not merely know dance. He knows raw emotion, and how to successfully communicate through his art.

Regardless of whether or not you are a routine dance ensemble attendee, any student with an interest for social justice, music, and overall entertainment should check out this show. Perhaps it will be out of your comfort zone, but it will be a magical and endlessly fascinating performance.

The performance will be held on Tuesday, February 11 at 8 p.m. in the Williams Center. Tickets are free for students and $18 for adults.