River North Dance Chicago Critic's Choice Recommended The Short List (Theater)

When: Every other day 2012

"We're creative soul mates," says River North Dance Chicago artistic director Frank Chaves of his relationship with composer Josephine Lee. And at a rehearsal they comfortably switched roles; he turned conductor, advising Lee to make her dynamics "wavier," and she became a dancer, rocking on her piano bench. Lee heads the Chicago Children's Choir, but there's nothing childish about The Good Goodbyes, one of two premieres on RNDC's Valentine-themed program, "Love Is . . ." Though PG rated, it delineates brief, intense, bittersweet relationships whose lights and darks are echoed in Lee's piano suite. (She'll play live Friday and Sunday.) The other premiere, Contact-Me, is an octet by Italian choreographer Mauro Astolfi that aims to capture the "countless and varied ways to stay close to someone." Also on the bill: Robert Battle's Ella, Sidra Bell's Risoluta, Chaves's perennial Sentir em Nós, and Al Sur del Sur, choreographed by tango legends Sabrina and Ruben Veliz. —Laura Molzahn

Price: $30-$75

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