"Hubbard Street Dance Chicago" tag
Garrett Anderson, right, with full ensemble in James Sofranko's Homing.© Alexander Reneff-Olson. (Click image for larger version)

SFDanceworks – Season Three: Snap, Homing, The Old Child, Jardí Tancat – San Francisco

★★★★✰   SFDanceworks is going places. Formed in 2014 by longtime San Francisco Ballet soloist James Sofranko, the relatively new company already finds itself in a season of expansion.

David Hallberg in Mark Morris’s Twelve of ‘em.© Stephanie Berger. (Click image for larger version)

Fall for Dance – New works by Michelle Dorrance, Kyle Abraham, Sara Mearns and Honji Wang, Mark Morris – New York

★★★✰✰   I caught all four new works: an expanded version of Michelle Dorrance’s Myelination, Kyle Abraham’s Drive, the Sara Mearns and Honji Want collaboration No. 1, and Mark Morris’s solo Twelve of ‘em for David Hallberg.

Garrett Anderson and Anne Zivolich-Adams in Joe & Ida by Penny Saunders.© Andrew Weeks. (Click image for larger version)

SFDanceworks – Concerto Six Twenty-Two, Lickety Split, Joe & Ida, Portrait, Z – San Francisco

★★★✰✰   With this first season, Sofranko has proved himself a good curator of choreographic and dance talent, with a preference for loveliness in movement and movers.

Wendy Whelan and Brian Brooks in the studio.© Erin Baiano. (Click image for larger version)

Wendy Whelan – Restless Creature bill – New York

The whole evening has the feeling of an extended experiment. We see Whelan ridding herself of ballerina habits and trying on new clothes.

Wendy Whelan and Brian Brooks in First Fall by Brian Brooks.© Dave Morgan, courtesy the Royal Opera House. (Click image for larger version)

Wendy Whelan – Restless Creature bill – San Francisco

Ultimately, it mattered less what Whelan and her collaborators were doing, and more that they were doing.

Hubbard Street Dance Chicago in Nacho Duato's Gnawa.© Todd Rosenberg. (Click image for larger version)

Fall for Dance at the Delacorte Theatre – New York

For the second year in a row, the Fall for Dance Festival began with a pair of performances at the outdoor Delacorte Theatre in Central Park, one of the most enchanting spots in the city.

Wendy Whelan in Joshua Beamish's Waltz Epoca.© Dave Morgan, courtesy the Royal Opera House. (Click image for larger version)

Wendy Whelan – Restless Creature bill – London

It would be invidious to compare Wendy Whelan’s brave attempt to reinvent herself as a contemporary dancer with Sylvie Guillem’s far more mature achievement.

Kellie Epperheimer of Hubbard Street Dance Chicago performs in Azimuth.© Margo Moritz. (Click image for larger version)

Hubbard Street Dance – Little mortal jump, Azimuth, Too Beaucoup – San Francisco

The dancers are really top-notch, razor-edge precise and boundlessly energetic, but limited to an eclectic vocabulary reflecting a Nederlands Dans Theater aesthetic…

Hubbard Street Dancers Meredith Dincolo and Quinn B. Wharton in Casi-Casa by Mats Ek.© Todd Rosenberg. (Click image for larger version)

Hubbard Street Dance Chicago – Casi-Casa, Blanco, PACOPEPEPLUTO, Untouched – Chicago

Ek’s movement teeters on the outer limits of emotion, barely contained and threatening to explode at the drop of a match, and there are numerous metaphoric lit matches in this piece – Casi-Casa.

Choreographer Mats Ek.© Lesley Leslie-Spinks. (Click image for larger version)

Mats Ek, Choreographer, working at Hubbard Street Dance Chicago

Ek laments the loss of dramatic repertory in today’s classical programming. “Many modern dancers don’t want that ‘reason’ for doing,” relegating drama in dance to childish pantomime, not serious business.

Chicago Dancing Festival – Free Tickets Available

The Chicago Dancing Festival today announces that free tickets for the Festival’s 6th annual series of dance performances will become available to the general public beginning Tuesday, July 17.

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