It's all individual initiatives in 'COLEctive Notions' | Dance Critic's Choice | Chicago Reader

It's all individual initiatives in 'COLEctive Notions' 

Five members of Margi Cole's Dance COLEctive offer works of their own

Dances inspired by art, country music, and a bread recipe, from Dance COLEctive

Dances inspired by art, country music, and a bread recipe, from Dance COLEctive

William Frederking

The Dance COLEctive presents new work by five company members in this third annual "COLEctive Notions" showcase. Artistic director Margi Cole provided feedback on the pieces, and sometimes her proteges took her advice—as Kaitlin Bishop did, for instance, regarding Into the Crevasse. Performed by Maggie Koller, this sure-handed solo about sadness benefits from Cole's suggestion that the minimalist score of static and spare piano notes issue from Koller's iPhone armband instead of conventional speakers. You get the sense that she's enveloped in—and possibly driven by—a personal soundtrack barely audible to the rest of us.

Molly Grimm-Leasure's abstract paintings were the jumping-off point for her ambitious septet Primary Blends. After watching the dancers do improvisations based on her art, Grimm-Leasure shaped their responses into an abstract composition—a sort of danced painting. Alaina Murray's trio Please Read Carefully was inspired by a bread recipe, but it's evolved into a humorous consideration of choreography itself. Hank Williams's melancholy and swinging rhythms color Their There, a quartet about attachment to place by Shannon McGuire. And Melissa Pillarella often pits two against one in Looking Back, Running Forward, a trio exploring the process of finding oneself.

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