Arts & Culture » Theater Critic's Choice

Gus Giordano Jazz Dance Chicago

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Now in its 40th year, the troupe has branched out from the classic jazz-dance creations of its founder, who's turning 80 next summer, to embrace the choreography of company members and national figures alike. Two new additions come from local choreographers. Randy Duncan's Sister Girl, a dance for five women, is set to an original score by Rob Milburn and Michael Bodeen, while Entropy, an ensemble piece by Davis Robertson of the Joffrey Ballet of Chicago, plays with the notions of chaos and order. At times recalling the stateliness of ballet, at times the energy and freedom of African dance, Entropy is set to a score that veers wildly from classical string music to a vaguely Latin sound to tango to instrumental music informed by Middle Eastern and Indian influences; the final movement begins with demonic speed but hits the occasional speed bump, grinding down to romantic slow motion, then picking up where it left off. Company member Jon Lehrer presents his Bridge and Tunnel, a good-natured, easygoing piece set to Paul Simon songs; Liz Imperio, choreographer to the stars (Madonna and Jennifer Lopez, for example), offers La Raza del Barrio; Chicago guy Billy Siegenfeld is represented by his classic Getting There; and former company member Eddy Ocampo, now the Giordano school's codirector, presents Black Binasuan, based on a traditional Filipino folk dance. Overall, current artistic director Nan Giordano, Gus's daughter, has created a nice mix of family feeling and international appeal. Merle Reskin Theatre, 60 E. Balbo, 312-922-1999. Through October 13: Saturday, 8 PM; Sunday, 3 PM. $20-$30.

Art accompanying story in printed newspaper (not available in this archive): photo/Mike Canale.

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