Theater, Dance, Comedy and Performance in Chicago

Review: “Landing/Place”/Bebe Miller Company

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Choreographer Bebe Miller’s “Landing/Place” draws on the resources of Ohio State’s Advanced Computing Center to create a multimedia expression of location and its discontents. The piece employs different layers of projection to display both video images and motion-capture imagery, which abstracts recorded motion by Miller’s company into patterns of light. “Landing/Place” is a dramatic and disorienting piece of work—disorienting not just on account of the layers of visual processing it demands, but also given the frequently disjunctive movements of the company, who fall in and out of synchronization with tantalizing rapidity. At times, the melange of elements becomes simply overwhelming, defeating the audience’s attempts to take it all in. But out of such moments of frustration emerge movements of isolated fluidity, as though the dancers had become human screen-savers, gyrating and whirling their way across the mediated space. Like the performers themselves, the audience is asked in “Landing/Place” to take up the position of migrating birds, able to perch only momentarily before flocking again away. (John Beer)

Bebe Miller Company performs at the Dance Center of Columbia College, 1306 South Michigan, 312-344-8300, through October 8.

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