Five Dance Shows to See in L.A. This Week, Including Pilobolus Meets SpongeBob SquarePants

Dancer Paul White in The Oracle
Dancer Paul White in The Oracle
Photo by Regis Lansac

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5. Stravinsky's Rite of Spring goes solo

In 1913, Nijinsky's Rite of Spring for the Ballet Russes evoked foot stomping primitives. In the 1970's, Maurice Bejart's white-clad dancers suggested a mating ritual of uber hipsters and in the 1980's Pina Bausch's fevered tribe sacrificed one of its own amid a stage deeply covered with peat. What more could a choreographer do with Stravinsky's iconic Rite of Spring? In The Oracle, choreographer Meryl Tankard's answer was to skip the tribal hordes and go in a completely different direction, filling the music with one extraordinary solo performer, Paul White. The Oracle premiered at the Sydney Opera House and finally arrives here. Better known in Europe than in the U.S., Tankard danced with Pina Bausch's company before returning to Australia where she led several major contemporary dance ensembles and built her own reputation as an in demand choreographer. Tankard generously employs celebrated Australian dancer Paul White's gymnast skills and his ability to amplify small isolations as well as erupt with the tremendous power required to embody Stravinsky's music. The event is part of the ongoing festival celebrating the 100th anniversary of the 1913 premiere of Rite of Spring and comes with the alert that nudity is involved. At Irvine Barclay Theater, 4242 Campus Dr., Irvine; Tues., Feb. 26, 8 p.m.; $22-$32, $11-$16 under 30. www.thebarclay.org. (949) 854-4646.

4. Modern dancers That Evoke

Encore Dance Company takes the stage with Evoke and a promise to stir emotions. The host troupe gets help from the Los Angeles Contemporary Dance Company making a guest appearance at the Los Angeles Theatre Center, 514 S. Spring St., dwntwn.; Sat., Feb. 23, 7:30 p.m., Sun., Feb. 24, 2 p.m., $15, $10 students & seniors, www.encoredancecompany.org/news. www.thelatc.org.

3. Dance with benefits

As part of its mission, Lineage Dance presents benefit concerts to raise funds for worthy organizations that give back to the community. Proceeds from this event go to the Action Committee for Women in Prison which advocates for humane treatment of incarcerated women. At Lineage Performing Arts Center, 89 S. Fair Oaks Ave., Pasadena; Fri., Feb. 22, 7 p.m., $50, www.acwip.net. 626-844-7008, www.lineagedance.org.

Pilobolus
Pilobolus
Photo by Grant Halverson

2. Jugglers and SpongeBob SquarePants collaborate with Pilobolus

A new generation of bendable dancers brings the wondrous and inventive world of Pilobolus Dance Theatreto town. Look for a new work developed with a MacArthur genius award juggler and a collaboration with a the lead writer for television's SpongeBob SquarePants along with repertoire favorites showcasing the troupe's distinctive gymnastic-flavored modern dance. At Smothers Theater, 24255 Pacific Coast Highway, Malibu; Tue., Feb. 26, 8 p.m., $30-$50. 213-480-3232, arts.pepperdine.edu/tickets/.

1. Last chance for a flamenco night out

Flamenco dancers Jennifer Larson and Claudia Moreno join vocalist Antonio Sanchez and guitarist Borislav Solakov for the final Sevilla Flamenco Dinner Show. At Cafe Sevilla, 140 Pine Ave., Long Beach; Sat., Feb. 23, 7 p.m.; $47.50. www.cafesevilla.com/locs/longBeach/index.html.

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Pilobolus
Pilobolus
Photo by Grant Halverson

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