Chicago choreographer Winifred Haun is a puzzle, an artist of considerable talent who can't seem to decide whether to go for the arcane and challenging or the popular and accessible. So she does both. Trained in ballet, a former member of the technically exacting Joseph Holmes Chicago Dance Theatre, Haun veers between taut classical lines and softer, more expressive gestural movement; the combination is often arresting. Her new ensemble work, East 90/94, both explores the pace of contemporary life and experiments with formal issues: Haun uses contrasting styles--jazz dance, modern, the occasional ballet move, even t'ai chi--and all levels and areas of the stage space to maintain our interest. And does it so well we don't even notice she's trying. Typically, she's chosen a difficult mix of music--Iannis Xenakis, Karlheinz Stockhausen, Melissa Etheridge, Peter Gabriel--for the score, executed by Scott Silberstein; her dancers have never looked better. Just one year old this month, Winifred Haun & Dancers will be performing this work and several others Friday and Saturday at 8 at the Athenaeum Theatre, 2936 N. Southport, $10. (Saturday night there'll be a coffee and dessert benefit after the show; tickets for both performance and reception will be $35.) Call 227-4496. You can also see excerpts from last 90/94 Sunday at 7 when they'll be performed as part of the Oak Theatre Project (see listing), at the Oak, 2000 N. Western; $5 in advance, $7 at the door (975-0038).
Art accompanying story in printed newspaper (not available in this archive): photo/Michael Mauney.