Chicago choreographer Winifred Haun has always had a wry side. The solo Offer Void (which she made while still dancing with Joseph Holmes Chicago Dance Theatre some ten years ago) alternates contemporary classical music with Joe Cocker's "She Came In Through the Bathroom Window"--and the dancing likewise vacillates between the astringent and the overblown and floppy. The 1991 Close My Eyes is a funny, horrifying account of a cocktail party gone terribly awry. And Leadfoot Suite, premiered in 1995, uses a mix of music--including Dr. John's classic "Right Place Wrong Time"--as a backdrop for such whimsical movement as twirling wrists and ankles. These dances are on the program this weekend as well as Haun's In the First Place, a new piece about family relationships in which the wry edge is considerably softened. As comfortable as your oldest pair of pajamas, it features a mother, father, and four daughters whose everyday interactions form the basis of the piece; in one particularly nice segment the four girls sit cross-legged in a row and lean into each other, put their chins on their fists, or flubber their lips in unison. Siblings do have their solidarity, though it gets less play than their rivalries. Lonny Gordon, a choreographer who teaches at the University of Nevada in Las Vegas and who has a strong background in Eastern art forms, has created a solo for Haun, The Woman Who Fed Her Diamonds to the Goldfish Bowl, 2, and Chicagoan Frank Fishella has choreographed a new piece for the company with a Middle Eastern flavor. Friday and Saturday at 8 at the Ruth Page Theater, 1016 N. Dearborn, Chicago; $12-$15. Call 773-583-2995 for tickets and information. --Laura Molzahn
Art accompanying story in printed newspaper (not available in this archive): photo/Erica Dufour.