Dance performances

6 Dance Shows to See in the Seattle Area in Fall 2019

A classical ballet in pointe shoes; a working weekend examining masculinity, homosexuality, race and gender; and an array of new choreography across the city – yes, it’s fall in Seattle and the dancing begins. Here are some highlights from the season.

“Carmina Burana” & “Agon”

Pacific Northwest Ballet kicks off its 2019-20 season with a study in contrasts: Kent Stowell’s more is more “Carmina Burana,” with singers and wandering monks and a massive golden wheel, and the minimalist classic “Agon by George Balanchine. Of the two, the latter alone is worth the ticket price: another of Balanchine’s brilliant collaborations with composer Igor Stravinsky, ‘Agon’ is seductive and piquant, with every move of its dancers in leotards and tights totally unexpected. (In the breathtaking pas de deux, the woman enters a sustained arabesque – and the man falls to the ground, while still holding her hand.) The ballet premiered at Balanchine’s New York City Ballet in 1957 and still looks completely modern; it is still young work. Sept. 27-Oct. 6; Marion Oliver McCaw Hall, 321 Mercer St., Seattle; tickets from $37; 206-441-2424, pnb.org —MM

“Opacity property”

Velocity Dance Center is known for its interdisciplinary and limitless approach to dance, and choreographer Takahiro Yamamoto’s “Property of Opaqueness” promises to deliver a case study in this commitment to pushing the boundaries of what dance can do. . Part of a larger, multi-year project called Opacity of Performance, “Property of Opaqueness” joins a body of work – including art simultaneously appearing at Henry Art Gallery – investigating the complex interplay between performer and the viewer. 7:30 p.m. Sunday, October 6, Velocity Dance Center, 1621 12th Ave., Seattle; tickets from $7; 206-325-8773, Velocitydancecenter.org — Mo

Chamber dance company

One of the treasures of Seattle’s dance community, Chamber Dance Company – in residence at the University of Washington – is dedicated to presenting, recording and archiving modern dance works of historical and artistic. The company’s fall concert features four such works: an early career trio by José Limón from 1945, ‘Concerto Grosso’; Talley Beatty’s 1947 solo “Mourner’s Bench” on the witty African-American “There Is a Balm in Gilead”; Seattle dance legend Mark Morris’ 1982 work, “Canonic 3/4 Studies,” set to ballet studio music; and Brian Brooks’ 2012 duet First Fall, created for New York City Ballet’s ballerina Wendy Whelan. October 10-13; Meany Hall, University of Washington Campus, 4040 George Washington Lane NE, Seattle; tickets from $10 student, $22 regular; 206-543-4880, dance.washington.edu/events/chamber-dance-company-concerts —MM

“BOYS IN TROUBLE”

One need only read Velocity Dance Center’s promotional copy to be enthused by Sean Dorsey Dance’s “BOYS IN TROUBLE”: “True transsexual confessions.” A shameless love letter between gay black men. A dispatch of all things macho. A weird twist on butchness. A real discourse on whiteness. An invitation to take a deep look at shame. Witness pain and grief. A roadmap for another path. Sold. Dorsey, the critically acclaimed modern transgender choreographer, will bring “BOYS IN TROUBLE” to Velocity for a weekend filled with work examining masculinity, homosexuality, race and gender – issues the dance world would make well to consider as long-standing sexism and racism come crashing down on an emerging ethos of inclusion and needed developments such as pointe shoes for dancers of color and public displays of support for boys who dance. October 17-20; Velocity Dance Center, 1621 12th Ave., Seattle; tickets from $15; 206-325-8773, Velocitydancecenter.org — Mo

locally sourced

Here’s a welcome rarity at Pacific Northwest Ballet: an evening of brand new work, all from local choreographers. The world premiere ballets will be Eva Stone, Founder/Producer of CHOP SHOP: Bodies of Work; Donald Byrd, Artistic Director of Spectrum Dance Theater and Tony Award-nominated choreographer (“The Color Purple”); and PNB Corps member Miles Pertl, whose work has been seen at the company’s Next Step and PNB School performances. Stone’s work, “Foil”, will be set to music by female composers from past centuries (Nadia Boulanger, Elisabeth Jacquet de la Guerre, Fanny Mendelssohn and Clara Schumann); Byrd’s, entitled “Love and Loss”, is set to music by Emmanuel Witzthum, and Pertl (as yet untitled) is composed by Jherek Bischoff. November 8-17; Marion Oliver McCaw Hall, 321 Mercer St., Seattle; tickets from $37; 206-441-2424, pnb.org —MM

Pilobole

Named after a light-loving mushroom, modern dance troupe Pilobolus has been around since the early 1970s, intriguing and delighting audiences with their unique brand of body sculpting and collaborative movement. They’re in town to present “Come to Your Senses,” which was inspired by their collaborations with MIT’s Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Lab and Radiolab. In the show, the company “unravels the mystery of the origin of life, explores the beauty and strength of human connection, and celebrates our orientation in the biosphere.” It seems like a lot, but Pilobolus still delivers. November 14-16; Meany Hall, University of Washington Campus, 4040 George Washington Lane NE, Seattle; tickets from $61; 206-543-4880, meanycenter.org —MM