Amara Decker – Dance and Theatrical Design


My major has given me the proper training to be a professional dancer as well as a producer. The education I have received has qualified me to be the one to hire dancers and design productions. My disciplines include; dance, theater, theater design, writing, business, marketing, and communications.

Applied Project:

My applied project consisted of producing an all dance music video called “Lil’ Red; A Twist in the Tale”, based off the classic story of “Little Red Riding Hood”. This is somethingthat I’ve been wanting to do for a while and it uses all of the disciplines in my major plus more. I learned a lot about the differences between dance on film and dance on stage, but the most important impact that was made in my education was about communication and organization.

Research Article:

The topic for my research article was “Controversy in the Performing Arts”. This is a topic that I am very passionate about because there are so many issues in the performing arts world that affect me greatly. Leaning about these issues will be very useful to me when looking for a job.


My major, applied project, and research article all prepared me to work for a theatrical production company. My interdisciplinary education has brought together all of the disciplines that I am very passionate about and will make a difference in my career as an artist.


Lil’ Red; A Twist in the Tale

Here it is! My senior capstone project: Lil’ Red; A Twist in the Tale. This was one of the most challenging, stressful things I have eve had to do. I had to organize everything myself, but of course I had an insane amount of help along the way and I couldn’t be more thankful for that.

Let me tell you a few stories about filming days. First of all; I was in the hospital two days before the first filming day. I had insane stomach pain and had to be rushed to the emergency room, and all I could think about was how I couldn’t get sick because I had to film the video. Luckily I was fine the next day and I was all set to go. The second story involves the lovely weather we had during the filming days. The first day I was so cold that my arms turned blue. Thankfully I managed to shoot everything that I wanted to, but it was very frustrating to be dancing on wet muddy leaves, be exhausted, be on a time crunch, and be freezing on top of all that. Then the second day it was so hot out mostly everybody’s clothes were partway off in between takes. Of course that was better than having blue arms, but it was still frustrating and difficult the edit out shadows that we didn’t have the day before because of the sun. The universe wasn’t completely against me though, I had my strengths. I believe the biggest strength I had was how familiar I was with my story. I originally wrote down all of the different camera angles I wanted for each part but when it came to shooting days I barely looked at it. I knew exactly what I wanted and what came next which really helped move everything along quickly.

This project required me to use every single part of my major plus more. I used the dance part of my major obviously to dance and choreograph the entire video. The theater pat of my major was probably the most challenging one to incorporate because I had to act of course but I also had to direct. I’ve had to work with plenty of directors before so I know plenty about directing but acting on film and acting on stage are quite different. I believe acting on film is more personal but a little bit more settle. It was a little difficult to adjust to that at first but after a while I became more comfortable with it. The theatrical design part of my major played a huge part in this production. I had to come up with a setting, I had to design the costumes, and I had to edit the music (which all ending up being amazing in my opinion). All of this was probably the most fun part of the production process. There’s something about the design of a production that is so interesting and amazing. You create so much magic behind the scenes. Writing also had a huge part in this production. I based this story of “Little Red Riding Hood” but I wanted to make the story contemporary and I made the story a little different to make it interesting. One interesting challenge to the structure of this story was the adaptation of the characters. Instead of having a wolf, that character was Lil’ Red’s alter ego. Instead of having a hunter, he was was just a stranger in the woods that happened to see what was going on and he knew he had to help because that happened to him before, and instead of having a Grandma, she was just a friend. These were all a lot to think about.

My goal for this project was to entertain my audience and give them something interesting and different. I wanted to relate to my target audience by putting in things like hip hop dance, and dub-step music but also give them part of their childhood. I absolutely love fairy tales, which is why I thought it would be the coolest thing do this adaptation. So many people thought the same way. They were amazed by it and I couldn’t be happier with it. If I were to do anything different I would hired just one more camera man to help so the pressure wouldn’t have been all on one person, and I would have put aside just a little bit more rehearsal time just so we would feel a little bit more prepared. Other that that I am so pleased with how everything went. I can’t thank everyone enough for being a part of this process and I am looking forward to producing another project like this in the future.

Click here to check out the bloopers:

Click here to check out my other blog posts about this project:

Lil’ Red; A Twist in the Tale

The Minor Struggles