Once more with feeling

Dustin Praylow has always wanted to be a pediatrician. The junior biology major is on track to make that happen, but not before he explores his other passion — dance. 

The South Carolina native says he has been dancing most of his life, but he started training in high school. He plans to pursue a career in dance before going to medical school. Praylow is already on the way. 

During his free time, he choreographs dances for groups in the Pee Dee region near his home. 

“I like seeing other people put my work into life,” he says. “I like to see the show choirs I choreograph for perform my pieces and put their own spin on it.  “ 

This semester, the dance minor was chosen to create a piece for the student dance showcase. The dance program’s showcase of original student works will be inspired by the struggle of living with cancer. 

Praylow’s piece for the showcase, “Seven,” was inspired by his cousin, who died of leukemia at age 7, and incorporates contemporary dance with praise dance influence. 

“My piece is more inspired by the faith that his mom had at the time that he was diagnosed,” he says. “It experiments with a woman’s faith. I want the audience to feel that their faith has no limits. With faith, they can overcome the hardest obstacle.” 

The showcase is a perfect fit for Praylow who loves dance because it allows a performer to communicate with the audience. 

“The best thing I like about dance is the performance side of it, the feeling of conveying a message to an audience or trying to make them feel something,” he says. “I’ve always wanted to make the audience feel what I’m feeling intentionally. With this piece, I want the audience to feel empowerment.” 

If you go …

UofSC's dance program will present a showcase of original student work, "Affirmation: A Journey of Life Through Dance," Dec. 2-5 at Drayton Hall Theater. Presented in partnership with the university’s Center for Colon Cancer Research, the show explores how cancer affects not just those diagnosed with the disease, but extended families.

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