Infinity Dance Group hosts daily events, showcase
To kick off Infinity Week, the organization held “A Night of Inspiration,” an event showcasing students’ talents such as praise, dancing and poetry to encourage those who attended. Following inspiration night, the group hosted an ice cream social at The Quarters for anybody interested in joining the team or wanting to satisfy a sweet tooth.
“Infinity Night of Inspiration was simply a night for IDG and the guests who attended to come and receive a few words of encouragement and have their spirits lifted just in time for the ‘mid-semester hump,’” said Jeremiah Rhinehardt, performing arts dance major and vice president of IDG.
IDG also had a community service event with its members for LARC, a non-profit organization whose mission is to support people with intellectual and developmental disabilities in reaching their goals of self-sufficiency, quality of life and self-worth. According to the IDG vice president, they wanted to use a community service event to serve as group bonding and also a way to give back by donating beads to the organization. LARC works with its clients to develop their work skills through recycling Mardi Gras beads, cleaning hospitals and working with food in cafeterias.
Capping off IDG week were public showcase performances from Southern Gold’N Bluez, Southeastern Flipside, LSU Legacy and Pj’s Dance School. Sarah Jones and Dexter Portalis, members of PowerfUL Poets recited poetry club.
IDG held a workshop at Bourgeois Hall to help raise money for PJ’s Dance School, a non-profit performing arts school. In the workshop, Infinity taught a dance and later allowed the attendees of the workshop to take part in their showcase.
“IDG was very satisfied with the attendance and crowd participation. Their energy elevated each dancer to bring it that much harder making for a very entertaining and successful Showcase,” Rhinehardt said.
“I always think big, so there could always be more people who could have attended the event,” said IDG president Davonte Augustus, a senior public relations. “I do believe that everyone who was supposed to be there to support was there and the event was a major success.”
“Showcase was the big day in which we were able to showcase to our family friends all the hard work and dedication we put in to bring forth an amazing and entertaining show,” Rhinehardt said. “In my opinion, all the events were my favorite because it was the first week IDG has ever held. I marveled in every new experience each event brought.”
When it came to planning IDG week, the organization wanted to do things that got both the team and students of the university involved. According to Rhinehardt, the group effort helped the team bond.
“Planning the week was very stressful, but more importantly, it was fun. It allowed the officers to exercise our creative juices to come up with the best ideas to get the students involved with IDG and get excited to see our Showcase,” Rhinehardt said.
“Planning for the events was somewhat difficult just because we had never done anything like it before. We just had to come up with a game plan and try our best,” he said. “We decided to have infinity week because we wanted to get students at UL more involved with the organization and more informed about what we do.”
IDG wanted to celebrate a week to promote their showcase so they could have the best turnout possible, according to Rhinehardt.
“(It was) also to get our fellow Cajuns who are unaware of IDG’s existence more information about us and what we are all about,” Rhinehardt said.
Augustus and Rhinehardt have been members of IDG for four years, and both hold leadership positions in the organization. Augustus got his start in dance his first year on Infinity.
“I actually started dancing when I joined (IDG) my freshman year,” Augustus said. “I wanted to meet new people, and I thought of hip hop dance as something new and exciting for me to try.”
“My love of dance, mainly Hip Hop, is what inspired me to join IDG,” he said. “When I auditioned for the team my freshman year, my goal was to challenge myself to step out my comfort zone and share my gift of entertainment through dance with my fellow Cajuns!”
Rhinehardt said he has been dancing all of his life, but officially got his start at a performing arts academy, under the direction of LaSonya Johnson.
“Joining that academy is when I was exposed to ballet, modern, hip-hop and contemporary dance,” Rhinehardt said.
The mission of IDG is to give students who are passionate about dance a chance to express themselves through a variety of dance styles, focusing mainly on hip-hop dance, according to Rhinehardt.
The main goal of IDG, Rhinehardt said is to perform for the University of Louisiana at Lafayette organizational functions and activities. Also to spread diversity among other college dance organizations, while performing at their functions by invitation only.
IDG has been a part of campus since 2006 and was founded by Shonda Domango.