One @ Marquette: Terrence Morris Expressing Himself Through Hip Hop Dance
Terrence Morris Jr. walks into the dance studio in Helfaer Theater as if it is his front door to his home in Chicago. Massive Mirrors cover each wall around the room. There is a ballet bar encompassing the perimeter of the room as well. Terrence pulls one of the black chairs over and has a seat, calm and at ease. Morris spends a lot of his free time in this dance studio for Hype practice. Morris is one of the dancers of Hype Marquette. He has been a dancer for many years of his life and decided to rekindle his passion for Hip Hop by audition for a Marquette dance group.
Dance has been a part of his life for as long as he can remember. He was always interested in dance. Dancing came easily to him since he was young. As he grew older he became more devoted to dance and practiced to become a more skilled dancer. He did not realize that there was a strictly hip-hop dance group at Marquette until this past year. If he knew about it earlier he would have auditioned much sooner than he did.
He lost sight of his passion for dance because he became focused on school and work. While accompanying his friend to a Gold N Blues concert he became aware of Hype Marquette. In the beginning of sophomore year at Marquette he decided to audition. Tryouts for Hype were a two-day process. In the first day the dancer is assigned a number and then separated into groups by their number. The dancers are then taught a dance. At the actual audition they are required to dance the number they were taught as well as another dance they knew or choreographed. To his shock, the auditions had more people there than he expected originally.
“ I was surprised to see so many people were there, because I figured it was such an underground thing that there wasn’t going to be that many people there. But there was a really large turnout, and it really surprised me. That kind of made me nervous in the sense that look at all this potential what if these kids are better than me?”
The day before Morris and his partner practiced for hours in preparation for their audition the next day. They helped each other work on their individual routines.
“We went out there and kicked butt, we really did and we both got in. It was a really interesting process just to say I had the experience try out for a dance group and get in, is really cool.”
Morris is a sophomore theater major in the Diederich College of Communication at Marquette University. He hopes to participate in every aspect of theater there is. Morris is excited to pay his dues and start at the bottom to work his way to the top. He was inspired by Michael Jackson as many individuals were. When he was very young he excelled at learning the rumba and is confident he can excel at any other type of dance.
This year Morris has been in five different dance shows. Hype Milwaukee is only in Milwaukee. Both Marquette University and University of Wisconsin Milwaukee both participate in showcases. Each dance group goes to the other school to perform and support the other school. At the UWM showcase he had a horrible wardrobe malfunction. His suspender was no longer attached to his pants and during a turn smacked another dancer in the face. Even with this malfunction everyone was able to move past it and put on a great show. With the school year coming to an end, Morris is preparing for what lies ahead.
He is planning on wrapping up the year by finishing strong on his finals. He dreams of landing a job relating to his theater major when he graduates school. Until then he is figuring out which apartment to live in for his junior year and plans to continue dancing with Hype Marquette.