Chance Dance Fest | Dance Critic's Choice | Chicago Reader

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Chance Dance Fest


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Chance Dance Fest

Bob Eisen's dances have texts but no subtexts. They're filled with a sense of purpose, but their busy surfaces reveal no clear aim. His most recent piece looks like a classic farce, with its four performers narrowly avoiding collisions as they slam in and out of the Link's Hall closets, march from here to there, pause to touch a particular spot on the floor with their palms, write intently on a yellow pad, or change clothes (at one point Eisen dons a full-body snowmobile suit--pity the poor man if this weather holds). But of course it's not a farce, despite its humorous moments; it has no characters, no story, not even a clear reason for being. Yet his works gather force and feeling as they go. He'll show this piece--which is mostly set, not improvised--on each of the five Wednesdays in the ninth annual Chance Dance Fest; a different guest rounds out the bill each week. Peter Carpenter joins Eisen this Wednesday in a structured improvisation for five: Carpenter, who also performs, has instructed each dancer to focus on an unforgettable event from her own life that she's never understood. Richard Parker supplies original music mixed live. Then it's "materials-based physical theater" by Local Infinities (Charlie Levin and Meghan Strell) August 5, Frank Melcori singing the Gettysburg Address August 12, New York-based David Figueroa August 19, and participants in Jan Erkert's writing-dance workshop August 26. Wednesdays at 8 through August 26 at Link's Hall, 3435 N. Sheffield; $5. Call 773-281-0824 for tickets and information.

--Laura Molzahn

Art accompanying story in printed newspaper (not available in this archive): Bob Eisen photo by William Frederking.

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