Mr. Scatter is not a dancer. This may seem odd, considering the number of dance posts that have been on this site of late (or maybe, once you’ve read them, it seems painfully obvious), but that is partly a matter of coincidence. There’s been a lot of dance in town lately, and more is on the way.
We’re talking, of course, about presentational dance, art dance, dance as performance — not the social dance that Mr. Scatter did not learn in the 1950s and 1960s, when he suffered from a not uncommon affliction known as Two Left Feet, complicated by a textbook case of shyaroundgirlitis. Yes, he did go to his senior prom. He was in the band. The perfect end-run.
Watching dance, on the other hand, is a longtime pleasure, one that slides from tap to tango, classic to contemporary, Broadway to ballet. And it strikes Mr. Scatter that, while a lot of people weren’t looking, Portland’s become a heck of a dance town.
Oregon Ballet Theatre is somewhere near the middle of it all, continuing its lovely performances of Christopher Stowell‘s A Midsummer Night’s Dream and George Balanchine‘s The Four Temperaments through Saturday at Keller Auditorium.
And surely much of this renaissance can be laid at the feet of White Bird, which has routinely brought the un-routine to Portland audiences, exposing the city to worldwide dance ideas. Fresh from Hubbard Street, which has barely had a chance to skip back to Chicago, here White Bird comes again, this time presenting England’s Random Dance (that’s them in the photo above) Thursday through Saturday in the Newmark Theatre. The piece, Entity, by company leader Wayne McGregor, runs an hour and is reputed to be fast and furious. It also marks the end of White Bird’s two-year Uncaged series, which has spotted dance in adventurous spaces around town while it’s waited for its regular second-season home, Lincoln Performance Hall, to be refurbished. That’ll be done by the start of next season.
But as important as they are, the scene is far from just OBT and White Bird. Keep an eye out for these upcoming events, too. (The dance action’s so hot and heavy that we’re sure we’re missing something; we apologize in advance.):
Continue reading Random Dance, and other movements