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Heartzz and Bonies

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Heartzz and Bonies (a Mental Experiment), the AVID DVD Society, at the National Pastime Theater. Don't ask me what the title means--in fact, don't ask me what any of this evening of live and videotaped performance pieces means. David Wilson and his band of actors, dancers, videographers, and musicians work very hard to keep meaning at arm's length, offering only teasing hints in laconic snatches of dialogue and frequent costume changes.

Sometimes this tactic is absolutely infuriating, especially when the troupe's refusal to be pinned down seems to hide an incomplete mastery of craft, as in the short video "The Flower and the Box." But just as often the tactic is liberating: these artists sometimes make up for their obtuseness with enthusiastic inventiveness--in many ways the show is more a sketchbook of interesting ideas than a finished work--and lots of energetic, high-spirited choreography. Wilson and Tarah Brown in particular perform with dancerly power and precision--long, lanky Wilson executes some of the oddest, most dangerous looking moves I've seen. In one bit he flings himself, arms and legs flailing, over a railing and off a platform to the stage a good 10 to 15 feet away. And though some of the pieces are lame, they're all blessedly short: the longest bit is no more than eight minutes. --Jack Helbig

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