Arts & Culture » Theater Critic's Choice

Same Planet Different World Dance Theatre

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Variety is this company's aim: its annual concert features five pieces by five choreographers. New to Chicago is David Berkey's The Waiting Game, a quartet whose structure--a solo, a duet, and another solo--suggests first someone alone and longing for love, then a happy couple together, then someone alone again. Berkey died this fall at age 53; the final tune here, the poignant "Where Do You Start?," is full of loss, longing, and regret. At the opposite end of the spectrum is former Chicagoan Sam Watson's Badum Boom, an antic piece first presented in 1991. It opens weird: two female dancers wearing cow and sheep noisemakers sweep their arms up and down dramatically to produce tinny barnyard sounds, followed by two men who rattle and slap tiny tambourines attached to their asses, pecs, and groins. When a percussion medley starts (Watson picked up the recording at a garage sale for a quarter), the four dancers are driven into an escalating frenzy that ends in complete collapse. The company (now headed by Jeffery Hancock, Joanna Rosenthal, and Katie Saifuku) also presents another Chicago premiere, Jodi Lomask's Mantle; Jan Erkert's Antigamente; and Marcelo Evelin's improvisational solo Tender Out of Balance, performed by former SPDW artistic director Anna Simone Levin. Fri-Sat 12/10-12/11, 8 PM, Sun 12/12, 1 PM, Duncan YMCA Chernin Center for the Arts, 1001 W. Roosevelt, 773-506-8730, $15-$20. Note: Tickets to the company benefit Saturday are $30 and include the performance plus a party.

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