Graceful! Harvest Chicago Contemporary Dance Festival at Ruth Page Center for the Arts (Through September 28, 2019)

The Harvest Chicago Contemporary Dance Festival takes place over two weekends at the end of September at the Ruth Page Center for the Arts. Ten dance groups perform during the first week. Here is a selection of the best performances from the first weekend.

Giordano IIPeriphery

Choreographer: Joshua Blake Carter

The dancing in this piece is majestic and graceful. The choreography expertly matches the music by Nils Frahm, a contemporary pianist.  This group consistently brings a top grade quality performance to this festival and they have become a staple.

VADCO / Valerie Alpert Dance – Moving Through Memphis Project (Excerpt)

Choreographer: Valerie Alpert

VADCO by Leni Manaa-Hoppenworth

All of the dancers sit neatly on the ground in a single file line. As the music by Forest Swords plays, the dancers move in a short explosion of movement and then return to their position. The music in this piece captivates the audience with its dramatic effects which allows room for vivid imagery in its interpretation. Given the loud deep breathing sounds, similar to the sound of a dragon drawing long breaths, perhaps the dances represent a dragon at rest, able to explode at any moment.

Aerial Dance ChicagoStacked

Choreographer: Chloe Jensen

aerial dance

In the dark, three aerialists climb the silk rope hanging from the ceiling and strap themselves to cords hanging at three different lengths. The silk is removed, the lights come up, and the dancers spin and twist around on the cords. At the end, the lights go off and they bring back the silk rope to help them climb back down. Perhaps they should leave the lights on, as the performers getting in and out of position is a very interesting glimpse at the logistics of this performance.

Kybele Dance TheatreSonsuz

Choreographer: Seda Aybay

This professional contemporary dance company from Los Angeles puts on a work of art. It consists of beautiful movements of the dancers. As the program states, it is an abstract interpretation of Mary Oliver’s poem, “When Death Comes”.

See our reviews from last year here!

Get tickets now for the second weekend of the Harvest Chicago Contemporary Dance Festival through September 28th!


Cost of a ticket: $25

PlaylistHQ Economic Rating: Half Price +

Rating Scale: Exceptional Value > Worth It > Half Price > Go for Free > Don’t Bother


Quinn Delaney

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