Cerqua Rivera Dance Theatre | Theater Critic's Choice | Chicago Reader

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Cerqua Rivera Dance Theatre

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Artistic director Wilfredo Rivera has invited outside choreographers to participate in the company's inclusive "Latin Fire" show. Dionna PridGeon contributes an inventive two-part piece, as yet untitled, using music by the Buena Vista Social Club; the introspective first section represents the difficult time when the group was struggling for survival while the second, more upbeat part captures its renaissance. Michelle Manzanales of Luna Negra Dance Theater has choreographed Te Escogi Companera ("My Life Companion"), set to a raw-sounding song with lyrics from a Pablo Neruda poem about the virtues of a woman who's lived close to the earth. The company also performs Eddy Ocampo's passionate Voces Inocentes, first presented last fall at Dance Chicago: projections of kids and their drawings form the backdrop for choreography whose occasional playfulness makes its menace all the more horrifying. Honduran native Rivera is showing Mi Primer Baile ("My First Dance"), a semiautobiographical piece about immigration and assimilation, and a riotous finale, Hablemos el Mismo Idioma ("Let's Speak the Same Language"), using ranchera, cumbia, and salsa music. As usual with this troupe, all music is performed live. a Fri-Sat 6/8-6/9, 8 PM, Vittum Theater, 1012 N. Noble, 773-342-4141, $30.

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