Well now this is interesting: In a shorty by Sid Smith in yesterday’s Trib, the initial announcement for this year’s Chicago Dancing Festival made its way out into the wild. The names dropped made it mostly easy to play Match ‘Em Up and Guess The Rep: River North goes with Robert Battle (last year’s Train), Oregon Ballet Theatre goes with Trey McIntyre, and Jessica Lang and Edwaard Liang pair with the Joffrey (Lang’s site announces her commission from JB for ’09 and Liang’s popular if undercooked Age of Innocence premiered there last year). All three companies are said to be slated for an event August 18 at the Harris whose free tickets, if last year is any indication, will be snatched up in an instant.
The second paragraph is a little more mysterious. Smith’s tease says an August 20 concert is still waiting on a confirmed venue and names the Joffrey again–I’d bet Liang’s work goes up the 18th at the Harris, unless this other venue is someplace even bigger–in addition to Hubbard Street, Luna Negra and Lar Lubovitch Dance Company. Choreographers named are Jerome Robbins [the Joffrey again, with In The Night (which, incidentally, they danced superbly)?], Alvin Ailey, Lubovitch (LLDC, natch) and William Forsythe. Now, Forsythe’s Quintett, one of my favorite works of choreography, you might have noticed was slated to go up for the Hubbies’ June bill but was recently pulled with predictably little fanfare. Does that mean, then, that it’s been merely pushed back, perhaps premiering in a one-off as part of the Festival ahead of a proper Chicago premiere at the Harris in the fall? Or is some other yet-to-be-named company going to be executing rotating inscriptions and transferred isometries to Gavin Bryars’ trancendently taxing Jesus Blood Never Failed Me Yet? (If HSDC isn’t bringing the Billy I suppose it could be any work, in which case I’ll mention I wouldn’t mind seeing Eidos:Telos again.)
Also mentioned is an August 22 concert at the Pritzker Pavilion, which will no doubt be the packed, fun, run-into-everyone-you’ve-ever-met, crappy-sightlines-unless-you-get-there-early, conspicuously-long-appearance-by-the-Lubovitch-company, program-generally-not-quite-interesting-enough-for-the-serious-dance-fan-but-still-enjoyable-overall-especially-after-a-preshow-cocktail madhouse we’ve come to know and love. A fourth show at the MCA is also in the works; perhaps the Fest’s blog will be the place to watch for that announcement.