ANN ARBOR – With the University of Michigan’s School of Music, Theater, and Dance course guide in its final stages before publication, sources close to the school reported that a new modern dance elective will be offered to students wishing to refine the physical struggle of pulling tight pants onto damp legs.
Modern Dance 352: Putting On Skinny Jeans After A Shower will, “explore the boundaries of how modern dance intersects with the lived experiences of students,” according to school representatives.
“I think this is a great opportunity,” said acting major Tyler Wong. “I’m a male theater artist, so I have to be wearing skinny jeans at least six times a week. And I mean really skinny – the ones I’m wearing now don’t allow for any knee or hip movement which, along with the scarf and beanie, really help me feel a physical and emotional connection to The Work.”
The class, which will be offered during the Winter 2018 semester, will focus on the myriad of unnatural movements required for pulling form-fitting clothing onto the lower half of a slightly wet body. According to the catalog, mastery of moves such as the “hip thrust with belt loop yank,” “wide-legged squat with side kick,” and “jump n’ tug” will be required in order to pass.
The class itself is not limited to just jeans, either. Popular artist clothing like fishnet stockings under loose ripped jeans, “quirky” tights, and leather pants will also be featured.
Some students are looking at the course from a more political angle.
“The performance art of dance is truly a conversation between artist, space, and time,” said musical theater major Britt Sterling. “I believe the conversation I have with my pants in the morning is not just limited to scooching around on my butt while flailing my legs in the air. It’s an expression, a communication, if you will, between me and the sociopolitical impacts of the current presidential administration. This is important not just for me, but for every American I will empower when I use my pants and wet, half-naked body to take down the Trump administration.”
Professor Maxine Lagace is slated to lead the course, and has already started drawing up her lesson plan by focusing on the “narrative we speak with our bodies, souls, and movements.”
“Dance 354 will consist of several weeks of thinking about the power of tight pants, as well as group meditation and movement in which we all lay in a pile and hum together,” Legace said. “It brings the soul of the piece into all of our bodies as we prepare to embark on a journey with and towards The Work. I’m still choreographing our final performance, but it will probably consist of students being doused with water backstage before emerging from behind a curtain and putting on a pair of skinny jeans to the sound of nothing but their own grunts and curses.”
Many SMTD students seem eager to participate, with some practicing their moves before signups even begin.
Stephanie Matteau, a junior musical theater major, is preparing by mimicking certain movements she knows will come in handy.
“This move is really challenging,” said Matteau, as she hopped from one foot to the other while doing a half squat to move the waist of her pants further up her thighs. “I think coming into the course having already mastered this will give me an edge up. I want to get an A in this class so when I go to Broadway, they know how seriously I take my BFA.”
Unfortunately, Matteau was recently sent to the hospital in good condition after attempting the “high kick with crotch tug” and falling into her dresser.
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