Live Review: Ragnarok (Heidi Duckler Dance Theatre)

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Arts & Books
The shell of the former Rexel/Taylor Electric Supply building has become a graffiti-covered urban backdrop since someone set fire to the building in 2006. The four-alarm fire, fed by wire and other electrical components, all but destroyed the building, collapsing its ceiling and busting out its windows. Since then, taggers have covered the remaining walls with colorful and often elaborate graffiti, ...   More
 
Saturday, February 1, 2014 AARON SPENCER

Live Review: Oregon Ballet Theatre, Celebrate

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Arts & Books
So get this: At the end of this show, people throw roses. Roses! As if this were Europe! Point is, bring roses to this show, because you get to throw them.The show, of course, is Celebrate, Oregon Ballet Theatre's season closer and the last performance for principal dancer Alison Roper, who's retiring after 18 seasons with the company. Roper's been all over local media in the past few weeks, from our Q&A ...   More
 
Friday, April 18, 2014 AARON SPENCER

Live Review: Emio Greco, Rocco

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Arts & Books
Upon entering the Newmark Theatre for Rocco, a work choreographed by Emio Greco and Pieter C. Schoten that White Bird is presenting in its U.S. premiere, audiences will find a full-blown boxing ring on the stage. Part of the audience gets to sit ringside, facing two boxers, both dressed in shiny athletic shorts and dragging on cigarettes, who’ve already taken up posts in opposite corners. One slouches ...   More
 
Friday, April 11, 2014 KAITIE TODD

Live Review: Northwest Dance Project, Director's Choice

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Arts & Books
It was simulcast free to the public Thursday evening, but if you saw Northwest Dance Project's Director's Choice show live at the Newmark, you got your money's worth with nearly two hours of serious dance. Portland's leading contemporary company turns 10 this year, and artistic director Sarah Slipper's anniversary show is a selection of four works, including a premiere, from that decadelong ...   More
 
Friday, April 4, 2014 AARON SPENCER

Live Review: New Expressive Works

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Arts & Books
Studio 2’s New Expressive Works residency program, now in its third year, is developing a reputation for audacious moments—last year, drag queen Kaj-Anne Pepper taped back her penis in front of the audience, and in another act, Rosana Ybarra stuffed her mouth full of dried lavender. This year is no different, but also like previous years, the edge is tempered with milder material. The residency ...   More
 
Saturday, March 29, 2014 AARON SPENCER

Live Review: Stephen Petronio Company, Like Lazarus Did

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Arts & Books
The performance of Stephen Petronio's Like Lazarus Did is a special one for dance presenter White Bird, not because of the dance company—White Bird's presented Petronio six times, more than any other choreographer—but because of the live accompaniment by the Pacific Youth Choir. As the curtain rises merely a foot, just enough to show Petronio lying on his back in a black suit downstage ...   More
 
Friday, March 7, 2014 AARON SPENCER

Live Review: Cloud Gate Dance Theatre of Taiwan, Songs of the Wanderers

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Arts & Books
Abstract, expressive dance commonly seeks some kind of enlightenment. Butoh, for example, is often credited for changing lives with its agonizingly slow movement and grimaces. More difficult-to-categorize performance art has similar goals—if I may use a word as deliberate as “goal.” Cloud Gate Dance Theatre of Taiwan, presented by White Bird, abides by a similar rule, although perhaps more overtly. ...   More
 
Wednesday, March 5, 2014 AARON SPENCER

Live Review: Cedar Lake Contemporary Ballet

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Arts & Books
Cedar Lake Contemporary Ballet, an ever-popular company out of New York, is no stranger to popular culture: Emily Blunt was cast as a company dancer in The Adjustment Bureau. But its repertoire is at least high-minded in intent, as seen in a one-night performance Wednesday night, presented by White Bird, that featured three works by European choreographers. The first, Violet Kid by Hofesh Shechter, is ...   More
 
Thursday, February 27, 2014 AARON SPENCER

Live Review: Oregon Ballet Theatre, Reveal

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Arts & Books
Alison Roper begins Bolero with steely energy, surrounded as she was in 2008, when the piece premiered, by metal panels that gradually rise as Ravel’s snare drum-driven score increases in intensity. Within moments, Artur Sultanov bursts gallantly from stage right and rushes to her, completing the time warp to six years ago when the pair first danced the piece by Nicolo Fonte.  Sultanov, who at ...   More
 
Sunday, February 23, 2014 AARON SPENCER

Live Review: (a)merging (Program Nox)

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Arts & Books
The second weekend of Lindsey Matheis’ (a)merging compilation show is a lot prettier than the first. While the first weekend leaned more experimental—with such ornaments as rave rings and frying eggs—the second is largely straightforward, pleasant dance. The lineup of choreographers includes Princess Grace Award-winner Katie Sherman and Portland Festival Ballet dancer Emily Shultz, both of whom ...   More
 
Saturday, January 25, 2014 AARON SPENCER

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