Theatre, a cappella and dance groups take the stage with in-person performances at “Rock the Lake”


Madison Smith/Daily Senior Staffer

Refresh Dance Crew performs at Rock the Lake.

Diego Ramos Bechara , Web Editor


As waves danced and crashed against the Lakefill rocks, Northwestern students gathered for a night of performance — the school’s first large, in-person arts show in over a year. 

Singers belted ballads, comedians stirred laughs and bodies grooved with rhythm as several NU theatre, a cappella and dance student groups performed live onstage at a Wildcat Welcome event: “Rock the Lake.”

Freshmen, transfers and sophomores took to the Lakefill Sept. 18 to witness highlights of the performing arts scene at NU, from singers and dancers to actors and comedians.

“I absolutely loved all the events,” Weinberg freshman Blessing Agyare told The Daily. “I really loved everybody’s energy, and I’m just so impressed by how talented all these performers are.” 

The event included performances from a cappella staples like the Undertones, Purple Haze and Extreme Measures; dance groups like Boomshaka, Dale Duro Latin Dance Company and Fusion Dance Company; and theatre groups like Jewish Theatre Ensemble and Mee-Ow Improv and Sketch Comedy. 

The in-person performances didn’t only thrill attendees. Kamali Lopez Kuno, a Communication sophomore and member of Extreme Measures, described being on stage for the first time in over a year as “liberating and pulse-pounding.” 

“I’ve been performing for most of my life, and there’s really nothing like a live show where you just give it your all and leave it all on the line,” Lopez Kuno said. “It was something I really missed, so I was really excited when we finally got to perform live and in person.” 

Though many sophomores were happy for the opportunity to partake in the campus tradition, some felt disheartened that they had to share the event with the freshmen.

Communication sophomore Lily Ryan said she was excited for the Wildcat Welcome Back programming, but she felt that the sophomores were “being shoved in with the first-years.”

Nonetheless, she was happy to see what the groups had to offer. And for many student groups, the night was a chance to engage potential new members. 

“The goal of us performing at ‘Rock the Lake’ was really to spark interest, especially among the first-years, to try out for Extreme Measures,” Lopez Kuno emphasized. “It’s impossible to know for sure if we succeeded yet, but I know our group was really energized during the performance, which I know would excite me if I were in the audience.”

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