Maximum Affect: Hubbard Street Dances Forsythe at ADF

This is a Hubbard Street Dance Chicago year at the American Dance Festival, and seeing them last night at the Durham Performing Arts Center brought two hours of solace, wonder and joy on a very bad no good day at the end of the worst week I can remember since George Wallace roamed the land.

The program repeats tonight, 7 PM. Read my review in full on, but here’s an excerpt and a few photos of the magic. (Company PR photos, not from last night.)

Forsythe makes what I call “industrial-strength ballet.” It will strip the pretty off your picture of ballet right quick. But it is beautiful. Not only is Forsythe among the most inventive choreographers (his picture could be in the dictionary next to the word), his work is honest. Every thing in it rings with truth, and the dances are unburdened with the overtwisted conceptual preciousness of so much dance theater. There’s no room for neurosis in a Forsythe action sequence.


Hubbard Street Dance Chicago performs William Forsythe’s Quintett. Photo: Todd Rosenberg, courtesy HSDC and ADF.


Hubbard Street Dance Chicago performs William Forsythe’s N.N.N.N. Photo: Todd Rosenberg, courtesy HSDC and ADF.


Hubbard Street Dance Chicago performs William Forsythe’s One Flat Thing, reproduced. Photo: Todd Rosenberg, courtesy HSDC and ADF.


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