outside the box

Trio of works integrate movement and technology at HCL

By on April 6, 2016

Writer/producer Cynthia Bond’s first go at curating a series of dances on her own shines a lens on the use of technology to complement, alter, or replace movement. Dubbed Body ±, the one-nighter at High Concept Labs on the fourth floor of Mana Contemporary’s massive warehouse space in Pilsen seems the perfect project for the alternative intimate […]

Montom Mixes and Mingles at Mana (review)

By on March 28, 2015

Visiting Mana Contemporary at its relatively new Chicago location nestled in a weird, barren block of Pilsen is becoming a more frequent occasion, and it seems likely that Mana will soon be on EVERYONE’S radar. It’s not too far and there is more parking than imaginable, plus, Mana has a hip vibe that can only be felt […]

Nexus Redux (review)

By on January 11, 2015

Does Chicago need another new dance company? No. Does Chicago need another new dance studio? Probably not. And yet, it felt so exciting walking into the raw, cold footprint of the north side garage that will eventually become Dovetail Studios… walking in for the kick off a new name in town: The Cambrians. New, but not […]

A New Lens for Dance: Pros and Cons of Live Streaming Performance

By on October 28, 2014

Dance for the camera is nothing new, but with idevices, YouTube, and the Internet literally everywhere, broadcasting dance to living room sofas is easier than ever. Chicago companies large and small are trying it out, in different iterations, and for slightly different reasons. The common goal, however, is to access and engage with new audience […]

Soham Dance Project is born (review)

By on September 22, 2014

I spent my birthday this year with Soham Dance Space for a special Moving Dialogues during Chicago Dance Month (CDM). The theme of CDM 2014 was “Open doors, open spaces,” and the narrow studio‘s warm and welcoming feel was echoed by owner Anjal Chande’s calm and genuine presence. Chande is tiny in stature, but watching her dance, […]

Scatterdance presents a smattering of dance (preview)

By on May 1, 2014

Nora Sharp isn’t a typical dancer. “I grew up playing classical music intensely,” she said in an interview on Easter morning. Sharp didn’t start dancing until she was nearing the end of her tenure at Oberlin College. Being relatively new to dance and relatively new to Chicago, Sharp felt gaps in the community in trying to […]

Skate Dance Dream unites skating and dance, kids and pros

By on April 11, 2014

  My first contact with Parker Pennington was when I accidentally tweeted him good luck in Sochi. Thinking he was Jason Brown by looking at tiny pictures on my phone… ok I have no excuse, and that was really embarrassing. But Pennington has had an extremely impressive career of his own, winning US National Figure […]

Ginger Krebs’ Soft Parade works hard, plays hard (preview)

By on April 4, 2014

The day after Giordano Dance Chicago closed its spring season, I went to a studio showing of Ginger Krebs’ Soft Parade, premiering this weekend in the Katten/Landau Studio Theater on the fourth floor of Roosevelt University. Talk about polar opposite experiences. In the same way that jalapeño poppers and vichyssoise are both food, Soft Parade and Giordano […]

Eat to the Beat is back, with a twist…

By on January 27, 2014

In an effort to attract new audience members, the Harris Theater for Music and Dance has been working to develop programs that draw from the thousands of working professionals in the loop. Premiering this Thursday is a spinoff of the successful lunchtime series Eat to the Beat. Artist-y types have really gotten behind the series that brings […]

Opposites Attract in Paige Caldarella’s ‘Off Center’

By on November 3, 2013

CHICAGO — Can different genres of dance co-exist in a performance space? The question isn’t new, but each attempt at an answer produces widely different results. In her final outing as a Chicago Dancemakers Forum Lab Artist, Paige Caldarella fashions a relationship between ballet and vogue, calling on her background as a Julliard trained dancer […]

Cristina Tadeo and Nicholas Davio’s “Bread & Butter”: A Complex Issue in Analog Form (preview)

By on August 14, 2013

Young choreographer and recent Columbia College grad Cristina Tadeo set out to make a duet this summer with no other objective than paying her dancers.  Ironically, as the work started to come together it became more and more about the thing she set out to do. I watched the fifteen minute piece last night – […]

Hubbard Street 2’s Terence Marling and the Inside/Out Choreographic Workshop (Preview)

By on July 5, 2013

“You make the road as you go…”  Terence Marling The Inside/Out Choreographic Workshop is the annual chance for Hubbard Street’s dancers to strut their stuff as choreographers. Among a slew of other dancer-made concert series (The Seldoms’ Mix with Six and Thodos Dance Chicago’s New Dances are notable examples), Inside/Out uses four of its 52 contract weeks […]

Preview: Midwest Nexus Kicks Off with Synapse’s ‘Swath’

By on June 2, 2013

I’ve known Rachel Damon for about 10 years, and I feel like I know her work pretty well. A Damon dance is grounded, dark, and shrouded in abstraction. She blurs the lines between genders, genres, and disciplines in her work and creates through improvisation and visceral experiences.  Her costumes are grey, and red, and blue. Swath is […]

(Review) Hubbard Street 2 at Wheaton College

By on February 13, 2013

Dancing to live classical music isn’t exactly a novel idea, but somehow the combination of Hubbard Street Dance Chicago’s second company and the Wheaton College Orchestra last Saturday evening felt like uncharted waters.  After a Korsakovian intro from the orchestra, conductor Daniel Sommerville gave a brief speech applauding the diligence, dedication, and hard work demanded […]

Diablo Gives Ballet a Reboot

By on January 25, 2013

Ever since the Dance/USA conference I’ve seen Diablo Ballet all over the internet.  This relatively small-scale ballet company out of Walnut Creek, CA would likely be completely unfamiliar to me if not for its inspirational quotes on Twitter, dance history tidbits on Pinterest, and Audience prompts on Facebook.  In talking with Dan Meagher, Director of Marketing […]

Lizzie Leopold on how dancers are people. and so are audience members.

By on October 22, 2012

Ok, so, you might notice some changes around here… I'm in the middle of a massive re-build of the website!  Unfortunately, that means that we're is in a continual state of virtual chaos.  So exuse the "dust", if you will, while I talk briefly about a project that couldn't wait until the web changes are done…. […]