HSD Spring LicketySplit

Hubbard Street Dance Chicago Spring Series, “An Evening of Alejandro Cerrudo”

It was an absolute pleasure to attend the Hubbard Street Dance Chicago Spring Series, “An Evening of Alejandro Cerrudo” at the Auditorium Theatre. The performance was amazing. I was in awe of the grace and strength displayed by the entire ensemble. In fact, my friend Helen and I had quite a discussion about whether or not the dancers actually have joints! 4 Spotlights

Performing in the Spring Series: Craig D. Black Jr., Rena Butler, Alicia Delgadillo, Kellie Epperheimer, Michael Gross, Elliot Hammans, Alice Klock, Myles Lavallee, Adrienne Lipson, Florian Lochner, Ana Lopez, Andrew Murdock, Minga Prather, David Schultz, Kevin J. Shannon and guest dancer, Connie Shiau.

Alexander Cerrudo, Hubbard Street’s resident choreographer for the past ten years, can make a complex dance movement seem like an essential part of the music. Although I’d never seen the three ‘audience favorites’ included in this performance I loved his “Niebla”, a part of HSD’s Fall Series.

“Lickety-Split”, the very first piece Cerrudo choreographed for HSD, featured three couples dancing to the lush music of Devendra Banhart. In various groupings, they demonstrated the language of love. It was sexy, sensual and absolutely beautiful.

I think “Off Screen” was my favorite piece of the evening. It began with a young woman, sitting in one of the boxes, reciting a quotation – in a very good British accent. It ended with another recitation, this time by a man silhouetted in a strong spotlight. In between, a series of delightful vignettes, (I think I recognized Mack Sennett’s Keystone Kops) from the movies.

The young woman mentioned above was Rena Butler. I only know her name because I happened to be sitting near her father, who could hardly contain himself, he was so proud of his daughter.

This was actually the Chicago premiere of “Silent Ghost”, which premiered at the Aspen Santa Fe Ballet in 2015. Set to original music by Dustin Hamman, King Creosote & John Hopkins, Olafur Arnalds and Nils Frahm, “Silent Ghost” is an angsty, melancholic love story featuring Craig D. Black Jr and Alicia Delgadillo.

The world premiere piece, “Out of Your Mind”, created specifically for the Auditorium space, featured Rena Butler and David Schultz and the entire HSD ensemble. The dancers are so strong, so talented, so creative, they made it look easy.

Next up for Hubbard Street Dance: their Summer Series, a full evening-length work reimagining Ohad Naharin’s “Minus 16”, June 7th through 10th at the Harris Theatre, 205 E. Randolph, Chicago. Tickets range from $25-$110. Parking is available at a slightly reduced rate with a validated ticket. A much less expensive parking option ($15) is the garage on Randolph between Michigan and Wabash (take a short walk through the Randolph Street Station to the Harris Theater). FYI www.hubbardstreetdance.com.

Read all of my reviews at www.spotlightonlake.com.