Dance Weekly: White Bird shows at home or on the stage

Put on your jammies, pour a glass of wine, get comfortable and hit play. If you are like me and couldn’t make it out to see the Brazilian dance company Grupo Corpo presented by White Bird last night, don’t worry: You can stream all of their dances, including the two they performed last night (Suíte Branca and Dança Sinfôniva choreographed by Rodrigo Pederneiras) on Vimeo in HD for just $5 each. “Watch anytime, anywhere” it says on their website.

This is an unusual way to watch dance, and I wouldn’t recommend it on a regular basis because of how much you actually miss of the live performance experience. But it is a nice compensation, especially because the technology for filming dance has come a long way and looks more real than ever—more like you are actually in the theatre.

The folks over at White Bird are REALLY busy this week. Tonight begins the three-day run of Betroffenheit, a collaboration between two Canadian companies, Kidd Pivot and the Electric Company Theatre, exploring the concept of disaster and our reactions to it. (Given the Cascadia Subduction earthquake hanging over our heads, this has some specific local significance.) Five days later ODC/Dance from San Francisco docks in at the Newmark.

The local dance offerings are also strong this week. Butoh College finishes off with two performances and a community dialogue session on “The Future of Feminine through Embodiment”, Polaris Dance Theatre reveals its new space and shares photographer Jingzi Zhao dance/photography project “Fuse,” little red riding hood makes an appearance, a Russian orthodox sect dances to save the world, and a few of Portland’s most celebrated dancers perform in a fundraiser for The Dancing Over 50 Project.

Performances this week

Kidd Pivot and the Electric Company Theatre in Betroffenheit. Photo by Michael Slobodian.

Kidd Pivot and the Electric Company Theatre in Betroffenheit. Photo by Michael Slobodian.

Kidd Pivot/Electric Company Theatre
Presented by White Bird
March 31-April 2
Newmark Theatre, 1111 SW Broadway

You are the survivor and the disaster all at the same time, and a crisis-management team is on their way to help. You crave escape and pleasure and “The Show” is your distraction.

A hybrid of theatre and dance, Betroffenheit, is a collaboration between two Canadian companies, Kidd Pivot and the Electric Company Theatre, exploring the concept of disaster and our reactions to it.

Butoh Ad Lib: A series of extemporary dances of presence and imagination
Diego Piñón, Mizu Desierto, Douglas Allen, Christopher Mankowski, and Dreaming Body.
8 pm March 31
The Headwaters Theatre, 55 NE Farragut St

8 pm April 2
Yumiko Yoshioka, Mizu Desierto, Stephanie Lanckton, Sheri Brown, Helen Thorsen and Mary Cutrera.

Community Dialogue
The Future of Feminine through Embodiment
7 pm April 3
The Headwaters Theatre, 55 NE Farragut St

Wrapping up three weeks of classes, performances and dialogue, Butoh College finalizes this weekend in two performances by international and regional Butoh artists along with the last session of community dialogue. Organized and directed by Portland Butoh artists Mizu Desierto, Co-Founder and Artistic Director of Water in the Desert and The Headwaters Theatre.

If you have ever been curious about Butoh this is your last chance to see performances by some of the leading names in Butoh from around the world. If you are interested in further investigation into the experience of Butoh, I previously interviewed two Portland Butoh artists, Alenka Loesch and Meshi Chavez, about theirs.


The Dance over 50 Project. Photographs by Gregory Bartning.

Dancing Over 50 Soirée
Hosted by Stance On Dance; Emmaly Wiederholt and photographer Gregory Bartning
6 pm April 1
Alberta Abbey, 126 NE Alberta St

A collaboration between dancer/writer Emmaly Wiederholt and photographer Gregory Bartning, The Dancing Over 50 Project, through interviews and photos, works to destroy the myth that dance and professional dancing belong only to the young by talking with dancers over 50 from the West Coast about their lives in dance.

The project is being turned into a book and the fundraiser for the book publication will take place this weekend with performances by Gregg Bielemeier, Linda Austin, Carla Mann, Susan Banyas, Emily Schultz, Bb DeLano (of 11 Dance Co.), Joshua Hernandez (of Nonsense Dance), Rachel Slater (of Muddy Feet) and a short talk by Alito Alessi.

Portland dancers included in the publication are Linda Austin, Susan Banyas, Mike Barber, Gregg Bielemeier, Nancy Davis, Jim Lane, Heidi Duckler, Tracey Durbin, Jamey Hampton, Carla Mann, Tere Mathern, Jim McGinn, Josie Moseley, Jayanthi Raman and Eric Skinner.

Polaris New Home Open House and Jingzi Photography exhibition “Fuse”
6 pm April 1
Polaris Dance Theatre, 1826 NW 18th Ave

Polaris Dance Theatre has a new home and they want to share it to you. Join them in celebration of their new digs with drinks, hors d’oeuvres, a raffle, and open rehearsals by the Polaris Dance Company and Polaris Junior Company.

Polaris will also be hosting a sneak peek at “Fuse—Portland Dance Portrait,” featuring the photography of Jingzi Zhao, on display from April 1-May 1st. “Fuse” is a collaborative dance/photography project by photographer Jingzi Zhao that captures dancers on location, in historic landmarks, neighborhoods, and businesses around Portland, to showcase the beauty, culture and lifestyles of Portland.

A larger body of work by Jingzi Zhao will be exhibited at the Multnomah Arts Center from October 7-25.

Agnieszka Laska Dancers
April 1-3
Studio 2-Zoomtopia, 810 SE Belmont St

Inspired by Polish writer, Olga Tokarczuk and paintings by Zdzislaw Beksinski, Bieguni or “runners” in English, depicts the story of a Russian orthodox sect that believes all evil comes from stagnation, and that only people, continually in motion, can save the world. The premise? The moving body is sacred.

Original choreography by Agnieszka Laska with an original score by ALD Resident Composer Jack Gabel.


Raven and Red in Tempos Contemporary Circus’s production of Little Red. Photo courtesy of Tempos.

Little Red
Tempos Contemporary Circus
April 1-3
Echo Theatre Company, 1515 SE 37th Ave

This dance tells the Little Red Riding Hood story through the eyes of the circus, the Tempos Contemporary circus that is. Wearing her famous hood, this Red Riding Hood dances, leaps and flies her way through the forest, avoiding creepy creatures and having a ball of a time until she meets the inevitable wolf.

Dance Wire Dance Passport participant. Click for details.

Next Week’s Performances

April 7-8, ODC/Dance, White Bird
April 7-21, Pearl Dive Project, BodyVox Dance
April 8, The Journey, Inclusive Arts Vibe Dance Company Performance
April 8-9, Ignite, PDX Dance Collective
April 14, Leo, A contemporary dance by Ron Amit

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