High stepping

Dancing with the stars
By DEBRA CASH  |  March 11, 2010

FEELING THE BEATS: Choreographer Tim Rushton’s Danish Dance Theater makes its Boston debut at the Paramount Theatre April 27-28.

The heavy-hitter repertory shows this season come from ALVIN AILEY (Wang Theatre, April 15-18; celebrityseries.org) and GEORGEBALANCHINE (see below). But why not welcome spring by taking a chance on fresh experiences as well? Eerie butoh artist ZACK FULLER performs Into the Shiny Battle at Mobius and also offers slo-mo workshops in physical theater and "body weather" training in Cambridge (March 19-20; mobius.org). STEPHEN PETRONIO COMPANY dances at gale-force speed in the Boston premiere of I Drink the Air Before Me at the Institute of Contemporary Art (March 19-21; worldmusic.org).

An ambitious, day-long symposium of master classes, films, panels, performances, and an until-the-wee-hours party honors three recently departed geniuses who moved dance forward, each in his or her own way: PINA BAUSCH, MERCE CUNNINGHAM, and MICHAEL JACKSON. The live — and lively — participants on hand at the Cambridge Multicultural Arts Center will include David Parker of the Bang Group, Chicagoan Julie Rhoads, Max Pollack, Eric Cruz, and the impish ladies of Monkeyhouse (April 10; cmacusa.org).

BOSTON BALLET will join only two other companies in the world who've been approved to present Balanchine's version of the charming man-meets-living-doll ballet Coppélia at the Opera House (April 8-18; bostonballet.org). The company will offer more Balanchine the following month — The Four Temperaments, Apollo, and Theme and Variations (May 6-16) — and then Jirí Kylián's Black and White (May 20-30).

Dance and filmmaking have never been the same since they were reshaped by the theoretical rigor of YVONNE RAINER. She'll be talking to major second-generation telenarrative artist JOAN JONAS about "the politics of looking and being looked at" — with documentations of Rainer's performances providing illustration — at MIT's Bartos Theatre (April 12; visualarts.mit.edu/about/lecture.html).

Zimbabwean dance diva NORA CHIPAUMIRE, who made her mark with Urban Bush Women and has become a formidable soloist, joins forces with her Shona countryman musician THOMAS MAPFUMO and his band the Blacks Unlimited to explore dissidence, artmaking, and exile at the ICA (April 23-25; worldmusic.org).

TIM RUSHTON is one of the great humanist choreographers in the world today. With the Boston debut of the brilliant DANISH DANCE THEATER at the new Paramount Theatre, we'll experience his channeling of the profane spirituality of the American beat poets and his musing on mortality's inevitable erasures (April 27-28; celebrityseries.org).

National Heritage Fellow PANDIT CHITRESH DAS and LA-based tapper JASON SAMUELS SMITH juxtapose spicy Indian and jazz rhythms alongside a tight jazz trio at the ICA (April 30–May 2; worldmusic.org). Beforehand, the kathak master will be the guest of honor at Springstep's free retrospective video celebration covering 30 years of his solo work (April 28; springstep.org).

You can support our local dance community by catching CAITLIN CORBETT, ANA ISABEL KEILSON, SARA SMITH, JUDITH WOMBWELL, and WANDA STRUKUS within the framework of the third installment of DANIEL MCCUSKER's This/That Show at Green Street (April 9-10; danielmccuskerdanceprojects.org). And later in the season, McCusker's own choreography gets an airing alongside that of ROZANN KRAUSMARIANNE HARKLESS, MARGOT PARSONS, and DERRICK DAVIS, his fellow Dance Complex faculty members (May 22-23; dancecomplex.org).

Related: Wanting more, Group hug, 2009: The year in dance, More more >
  Topics: Dance , Entertainment, Entertainment, Opera House,  More more >
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