Summer Solstice Celebration | Theater Critic's Choice | Chicago Reader

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Summer Solstice Celebration

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The Museum of Contemporary Art's 23-hour party features more dance than ever, maybe because of last year's "Everybody Dance" segment, which closed the event with a hit performance by multiple companies and lots of innocent bystanders: organizer Dennis Wise said it was intended to "make a statement that Chicago dance is alive and cookin'." This year the festival includes, as usual, many music, performance, and visual-arts events (see separate listings) but opens and closes with dance. From 6 to 9 PM on Friday, Lisa Wymore and Sheldon B. Smith perform a partly improvised piece accompanied by the video projections and music of Matt Lux. "Everybody Dance" will again end the festivities, with short performances beginning at 2:30 on Saturday afternoon and a large group work involving the professionals and "buddies" they recruit from the audience at 3:30 on the plaza out front. In between you can see plenty more moving bodies--and move yourself. Gingarte Capoeira Chicago performs the Brazilian martial-arts form capoeira, a precursor of break dancing, from 7 to 9 PM Friday; Muntu Dance Theatre of Chicago offers African and African-American dance from 10 to 10:45 PM; Meg Duguid hosts a "silent dance party" in which festival attendees can don headphones and boogie to music provided by DJ D-Jaded from 10 PM to 1 AM; and the finalists in a local salsa competition--some 20 couples--compete for the championship from 11 PM to 1 AM, performing to the live music of Angel Melendez y Su Orquesta Arallue (viewers can dance between competition sets). On Saturday from 7 to 9 AM you can learn tai chi in the MCA sculpture garden; from 11 AM to 3 PM, dancer Asimina Chremos trails red yarn from a giant ball during a solo improvisation, Ariadne, that travels around the building; Anacron of the Original LA Breakers and a pair of DJs invite you to spin on your head during "Outbreak" between noon and 2 PM; and the Chicago Human Rhythm Project presents a tap show featuring MADD Rhythms, Rhythm I.S.S., Perfect Timing, and Especially Tap Chicago from 1 to 2:15 PM. Museum of Contemporary Art, 220 E. Chicago, 312-280-2660. Friday, June 21, 6 PM, through Saturday, June 22, 5 PM. $10, available only at the event; free for MCA members and children 12 and under.

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