After just over a year of hard work and preparation, a student-led film project is about to make its debut in the Putnam Theatre. Keene State College senior, theatre and dance and management major Amanda Untracht, and sophomore film production and theatre directing major Megan Lummus, have created a documentary which discusses what makes a dancer, Untracht said.

“This is a topic that sits near and dear to my heart. Since I define myself as a dancer, I have grown up seeing how dance has had a positive effect on everyone,” Untracht said. By asking people of all backgrounds about what defines a dancer, the film is meant to blur the definition of a “dancer” and bring the audience to the conclusion that dance can be something anyone is capable of. Untracht said, “This is a project that I wanted to use to expand my education here at Keene. I have no idea what I am doing when it comes to editing a film so I wanted to work with someone with the passion for film making,” a passion she found in her project partner, Lummus.

Lummus said, “I think the topic is something that isn’t discussed a lot, especially as a non-dancer myself. But the topic should be discussed more, at least from the non-dancer perspective. To separate ourselves is to ignore the things that make us all connected… This film is definitely something new for me,” she said. “I’ve never made a documentary or a dance film, so going in this was completely new territory. But I think making something that I’ve never made has taught me a lot, and I now want to explore more in this territory.”

By interviewing so many different subjects of all backgrounds, Untracht hopes to help the viewers learn more about what it is that makes a dancer grab your attention on the stage, and how it can be seen in daily life as well, she said.

To first-year dance major Samantha Witham, the topic’s importance is unquestionable. “I loved being a part of this film… Dance is such a big part of many people’s lives. Whether we are dancers or not, dance touches the lives of everyone in some way,” Witham said. “I hope this film impacts the way people see and feel about dance…  Each dancer has a different style and technique which I think helped to make one of the movie’s points clear which is that dance is different for everyone.” Witham said being a part of this film was an amazing and fun opportunity to get to show people what dance means to everyone, not just dancers.

Untracht and Lummus are excited to see the project come to its conclusion as the finishing touches are put on the film. “I truly enjoyed working on such an in-depth project,” Untracht said.

The film, Hidden: Behind the Curtain will be shown in the Putnam Theatre in the Redfern Arts Center on March 7 at 8:30 p.m..

Emma Mehegan can be contacted at

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