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5 Dance Shows to See in L.A. This Week: Dance Ripped From the Headlines

Immediate Action in Gui Makai
Immediate Action in Gui Makai
Photo by Denise Leitner

This week's dance events include an homage to a dead composer, dance from South Asia and a shared concert inspired by headlines and art.

Pennington Dance Group
Pennington Dance Group
Photo by Frances Chee

5. Political dance

Stories ripped from the headlines and dancing with art are the varied approaches taken by choreographers in this concert shared by Liz Hoefner Adamis' Immediate Action Dance and John Pennington's Pennington Dance Group. Adamis' two new works consider activists in Pakistan and South Africa who have galvanized international outrage. Malala Yousafzai was propelled to worldwide prominence after a thug stormed her school bus in Pakistan and shot her three times in the face. In Gul Makai, Adamis goes beyond the sound bite to explore the relationship between Yousafzai and her activist father, Ziauddin Yousafzai. In Like the Arabesques of a Blind Mind, Adamis tackles another politically charged topic: It's inspired by South African poet and apartheid activist Breyten Breytenbach's seven-year imprisonment in South Africa, including two years in solitary confinement. Adamis' dancers include Rebekah Davidson, Sinnamon Hauser, Lindsey Lollie, Paula Present and Sarri Sanchez.

Choreographer Pennington contributes two works employing onstage art. In OUT OF, five dancers perform with floor-to-ceiling watercolor panels by Susan Rankaitis to a commissioned score by Edgar Rothermich. In OVERLAY, Pennington launches six dancers who make the stage their canvas. The evening also includes live experimental music from the Yorgos Adamis Ensemble. At El Camino College, Marsee Auditorium, 16007 Crenshaw Blvd., Torrance; Fri., June 27, 8 p.m.; $15. (310) 329-5345, 800-832-ARTS, www.centerforthearts.orgwww.facebook.com/events/622940134468914

4. A pavane for a dead composer

With this reprise of Ceiling in the Floor, choreographer Hilary Thomas pays tribute to her longtime friend and composer Brandon Toh and his losing battle with depression and suicide. Toh's music provides the backdrop for Lineage Dance. At Lineage Performing Arts Center, 89 S. Fair Oaks Ave., Pasadena; Sat., June 28, 8 p.m., $20, $15 students. 626-844-7008, www.lineagedance.org.

3. A radio host and two dancers walk onto a stage...

Under the banner Three Acts, Two Dancers, One Radio Host, Ira Glass takes a hiatus from his radio host duties on National Public Radio to join dancers Monica Bill Barnes & Anna Bass in a stage show looking at love, loss and showbiz. Glass tells stories and they dance. The counterintuitive event has been selling out since its Carnegie Hall debut. Two shows, two chances, one night. Tickets and video at www.kcrw.org. At UCLA Royce Hall, 340 Royce Drive, Wstwd.; Sat., June 28, 7 & 10 p.m., $38.50-$65.50. (310) 825-4401, www.uclalive.org.

Dancers in Laurel Jenkins Tentindo's IMAGE ACTION
Dancers in Laurel Jenkins Tentindo's IMAGE ACTION
Photo by Taso Papadakis

2. Dancing in paper through glass

Laurel Jenkins Tentindo, a former member of the Trisha Brown Dance Company unveils her latest, IMAGE ACTION, an evening-length work with dancers moving through what she describes as a "sonic field," an obstacle course of glass objects, an instrumentarium created by Miguel Frasconi. Paper costumes from Maria Garcia interact with mobile stagelights to cast unpredictable shadows. Dancers include Barry Brannum, Milka Djordjevich, Samantha Mohr, Madison Page, Alexx Shilling and Tentindo. Info at www.artful.ly/store/events/3389. At Automata, 504 Chung King Court, Chinatown; Thru June 28, 8 p.m., $18, $15 students & seniors. 213-819-6855, www.automata-la.org.

Rangoli Dance Company in Gestures
Rangoli Dance Company in Gestures
Photo by Michael Elko Weaver


1. South Asian Gestures

With Gestures, choreographer Malathi Iyengar and her Rangoli Dance Company perform an evening of Bharatanatyam, an Indian classical dance form which relies on facial and hand gestures to retell South Asian legends and fables with universal appeal. Dancers include Sanam Chalan, Abhijnya Gowder, Lakshmi Iyengar, Ritika Iyer, Amiya Prasad, Anya Prasad and Sarayu Ramanan. Advance tickets at rangolidancecompany@gmail.com. The show is at Electric Lodge, 1416 Electric Ave., Venice; Sat., June 28, 7:30 p.m. $20 advance, $25 at the door (cash only). 310-306-1854, www.electriclodge.org.


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