The fine art of dance is alive and well-performed at George Mason University, where the campus company presented "A Dance Event" last week in the student union lounge.

The students of artistic director and dance instructor Claudia L. Murphey communicated an immediacy, a real sense that the performing arts are happening now for all of us.

The dancers' infectious and joyous personal involvement in dance caught the enthusiasm of the noontime crowd.

Dancers literally performed in the laps of other GMU students, faculty and friends as they made the best possible use of hallways, poles and confusion in the large but crowded foyer.

A versatile hour-long program included six pieces two choreographed by Murphey, "Bem Cycles," by Greg Simione, contrasted a soft touch of whimsy with a hard sense of physicality. The imaginative use of intriguing , ensemble tableaux added an intense sense of mood and stance.

"Watching, Waiting, Laughing and Walking - An Improvisation," by Bobbi Baumann-Vischi, created a Chaplinsesque atmosphere that set the dancers wiggling, boogeying and vocalizing in a counterpoint of music, voice and movement. Also saxophonist Glenn Smith, a GMU music student, provided the jazzy accompaniment.

The final piece of the program "A Wink Is as Good as a Nod to a Blind Horse," was full of fun and fancy. With colorful costumes and exuberant rough and tumble choreography, Murphey sounded just the right note to end the concert.

The next program of the GMU dance company is scheduled for April 14, 15 and 16 at 8 p.m. in the north campus auditorium. Call 691-7950 for more information.