Emily Johnson/Catalyst | Dance Center of Columbia College | Dance | Chicago Reader
This is a past event.
When: Oct. 7-9 and Sun., Oct. 10 2010
Price: $26-$30
Emily Johnson's hour-long The Thank-You Bar is an immersive, intimate experience. Each performance is limited to 40 viewers, seated onstage, who may be asked to move their chairs or sit on cushions at times. Three dancers, including Johnson, perform to occasional live music by guitar-and-pedal-steel duo Blackfish. But if the setup is cozy, some of the material is charged. Johnson, who's of Yup'ik Eskimo descent, talks, for instance, about the discomfort she felt as a child in Alaska, discussing Native Americans with schoolmates. And though her choreography, performed by her Minneapolis-based company, Catalyst, seems derived from Native American dancing, it can look postmodern: scoured, repetitive, mysterious. An ecstatic pounding of the chest to drumbeats, fists swiftly alternating, suggests a passionate current of giving and receiving. The Thursday, Friday, and Saturday performances are sold out (except for a Blackfish concert at 9 PM Saturday), but two shows have been added on Sunday. --Laura Molzahn



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