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st. petersburg times

fresh fun and games
June 17, 2010

Growing up in Tampa, Amanda Szeglowski was a fan of TV game shows. So when she moved to New York and formed her own modern dance company, cakeface, naturally she choreographed a piece based on The $10,000 Pyramid (the money total got bigger through the years), Family Feud and Double Dare. "The absurd, vacuous communication in those shows, and life in general, is what inspired the piece," she says.

The game-show dance is called alpha pups, and an excerpt of it is being performed tonight by Szeglowski and four other dancers from cakeface on the "Florida Dances" program of the Florida Dance Festival at the University of South Florida.

Szeglowski, 28, is pictured here with a stiletto heel in her face, a reflection of cakeface's quirky sensibility. "I would say that our work is performance art," she says. "There are elements of modern dance in it, but it has a lot broader scope than just modern dance."

Tonight's performance represents a homecoming for Szeglowski, who was in the first graduating class of Blake High School for the Arts in Tampa and then got a degree in dance and business from USF in 2003. She has lived in New York for seven years and founded her dance company in 2008, and also is a manager of corporate development and public relations for Dance New Amsterdam, an arts center in lower Manhattan.

Also featured in "Florida Dances" are tap dancers from the Bay Area Dance Company; Moving Current Dance Collective; and the disability dance company Revolution Dance. The program is at 8 p.m. today at USF's Theatre II. $6 and $10. (305) 310-8080; floridadanceassociation.org

John Fleming, Times performing arts critic