Bob Eisen's Chance Dance Fest, performed every Tuesday night in August for the past three years, has grown into a summertime ritual in the dance community. Folks wander in wearing shorts and sandals, fan themselves in the heat, and watch some of Chicago's best experimental dance unfold before their eyes. This easygoing atmosphere provides a tremendous amount of creative freedom; maybe it's the heat, but during the Chance Fest Eisen and his fellow postmodern-influenced choreographers take a more playful, experimental approach toward movement than they do during the rest of the year. This summer Eisen's act consists of improvising a dance with Julie Worden and traveling into the realm of spoken word with Bus Tales, a performance inspired by his trip across the U.S. in a Greyhound bus. As always, he shares the bill with someone different every week: Sheldon B. Smith and Aly Alt on August 10; performance artist Frank Melcori on the 17th; Jellyeye, the drum group known for its production "Avalanche Ranch," on the 24th; and choreographer Winifred Haun on the 31st. The fact that Eisen, Worden, Haun, and the Sock Monkeys (who performed August 2) have all been nominated for various Ruth Page Awards (the dance community's equivalent of theater's Jefferson Awards) should add a prestigious luster to such a laid-back affair. Tuesday at 8 at Link's Hall, 3435 N. Sheffield; $5. Call 281-0824 for information and reservations.
Art accompanying story in printed newspaper (not available in this archive): photo/Terry Lane.