Fairfield University is known for their Division 1 Athletics, but not very many know of the competitive dance team that we have right on campus.
Fairfield Dance Fusion represents our school at competitions all over the New England area for the entire academic year. They compete in a variety of dance styles including jazz, hip-hop and lyrical. This year they even broadened their stylistic horizons to tap, forming a small group of five. Senior Morgan Carrozzella, Brianna Napoli ‘19, Alicia Phaneuf ‘19, Nicole Porter ‘19 and Danielle Minieri ‘21 are pioneers in this genre of dance here at Fairfield, and they are expanding their levels of expertise for future Stag dancers to come.
Captains Napoli and Carrozella expressed to us how important it is to have a team like theirs on campus. Carrozella expressed how Fusion allowed her to continue doing what she loved while also being able to manage the workload of a full time student. “I was someone in high school who always thought I wanted to go to school for dance because that’s what seems right, but I’m so glad I chose Fairfield because I was able to be a part of this team. Fusion has allowed me to still keep dance as a part of my life but not have it consuming my life completely which I love.”
She also described the connections built through close-knit team as one comparable to a family. She said, “My favorite part about it is that we really are a family. I have met some of my best friends through this team and have made memories that I will never forget.”
Fusion has brought in some amazing choreographers who collaborate with the student-athletes to create award-winning numbers. Not only is the troupe a powerful group for collegiate dancers, but it is also a mode in which we can keep our alumni network strong.
This year, two of the group dances were choreographed by Nicole Lambi ‘17. Lambi’s creativity resonated with the judges of the Endicott College Dance Competition, and each of her two numbers entitled “Got My Money” and “Breathe” earned notable accolades. “Got My Money” won first place in the Hip Hop category, while and “Breathe” captured the highest honor as well, but this time in the Jazz category.
The group even called upon professional dancer, Michelle Montano, to choreograph a lyrical routine. This professional exposure is so valuable to the young dancers on our campus who are looking to break into such an intensely selective industry.
Fusion most recently competed at a Delaware Dance Competition hosted by Delaware Dance fever called “Evolve” on Saturday, March 2. They left with a first place ranking for tap in the open category, choreographed by Captain Carrozella, and third place in the Hip Hop category.
Fairfield Dance Fusion is a group to watch, and holds tryouts each semester for dancers who look to continue competing and are interested in doing so at a university level.