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Meet Boomshaka’s Suzanne Hutt

Name: Suzanne Hutt

Class: Sophomore

Majors: Dance and Art History

What makes Suzanne so Celebritastic? You just feel sunshine and unicorns swirling around you whenever she squeals “Hello” and jumps to give you a hug. Even if she’s met you only once or twice. She’s snarky, yet insightful. Quirky, but collected. Straight-edged, but badass. You can’t pin her down. Don’t even try. We just attempted to get to know this beacon of happiness a little better so you could too.

Admissions decisions just came out. Why do you love Northwestern?
The first thing that comes to mind is the people. Never have I found myself so at home with so many amazing people. I always find myself more inspired by every new person I meet and the fact that they’re so excited about what they’re doing. No one is into just one thing that they’re into here. And I love that.

What are some niches that you’re in?
So dance is a pretty big niche. The dance department is so small and mighty that we’re all able to be so close. And I love being able to grow in that close and non-competitive environment.

Boomshaka is my primary niche – They’re like my family. Every year just brings us closer. There’s just something really special about making music with people – I see that on a lot of different levels, metaphorically and emotionally too, whether it’s chilling in the dorm room with friends or making something stage-worthy with your peers. It makes me want to work harder in every other aspect of my life. And, getting to share it with everyone, performing for our friends or for little kids, it’s really special. When we’re just goofing around in rehearsal and someone starts a beat and everyone starts dancing around, it just becomes this wholly new and amazing thing. We thrive off of each other’s energy.

So what is Boomshaka for people who don’t know?
Our tagline is “Boomshaka is Northwestern’s premiere dance, drumming and rhythm ensemble.” We’ve got dancers, we’ve got drummers, and then we just use lots of crazy found instruments like trash cans and wooden poles and metal chains and most primarily, our bodies to make rhythm. We do it all year and we have a spring tour where we go to a new city each year and then in May we have our big show of all new student choreography. It’s also completely student run. Love that – it’s a lot of hours but it’s all worth it.

Had you heard of Boom before coming here?
I hadn’t and then, once I got here, I was really intimidated to try out. In high school, I had danced in an environment that was all girls and modern lyrical and I figured that’s what I’d keep doing. Boomshaka seemed like you had be badass or kind of edgy – and I’m so not edgy. But, it’s really so eye-opening and amazing and not what I thought at all. I can do so much more now even than I could last year. It’s about pushing yourself with the help of really good friend-teachers. We all have to share but everyone is so willing to.

So when you’re not Booming, what do you do?
Well, I’m also involved in GES, the Global Engagement Summit. I’m on the Open Shutter committee, which focuses on photography.A lot of us go abroad at NU.OpenShutters tries to figure out, “How do you capture the essence of another country without bringing an over-americanized eye to it?” We have an exhibit every quarter to show Northwestern student submissions and we have the Summit coming up with a bigger exhibition in a few weeks where students come to talk about ideas for global and local development. That’s what I love – there are lots of people who it’s their thing, that’s what they study and they do NUCHR and GlobeMed and GES. For me, GES is a diversion from my normal scene, but something I’m really interested.

What’s one thing you wish you could be involved in, as if you don’t do enough?
There are so many things, but this is so obvious:  A capella. I just love to sing and I have no outlet – I auditioned for chapel choir and got in and I was so pumped but I didn’t realize they sang every Sunday in chapel. So now I just sing in my room by myself. I’m sure all my neighbors hate me, but I’m not ashamed.

What’s your style?
Oh, I’m wearing legwarmers on my arms – do you watch Glee? It’s not original. But, I did realize that I really just like wearing funny glasses, too. So, I guess that’s my style.

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