Put This On Your Radar

Vicky Shick’s “Another Spell.” Photo © Ian Douglas.

A weekly, highly personal and subjective list of performances and artists we want you to know about:

Leigh’s picks

Early January is one of the busiest times in New York’s dance calendar, and yet the activity is all-but-invisible to the general audience.  It’s the APAP conference, a yearly convergence of presenters and artists where booking dates and touring schedules get hammered out.  Showcases sprout up in every available space, and some of the best pieces from the past year get a second showing.

If you can find a presenter who can get you in, go see Sara Juli’s “Tense Vagina: an actual diagnosis” There isn’t tons of dance in it, but her wry, sharply-observed narrative about the stresses of motherhood is a kind of Portnoy’s Complaint for the lactating set.  Here’s what I wrote in on its last run at The Chocolate Factory Theater.

Vicky Shick’s “Another Spell” is getting an encore presentation at Danspace, and tickets are available to the public.  As I wrote back at its premiere, it’s “the kind of enchanting nonsense that might make up a post-modern ‘Alice in Wonderland’ – if Alice grew up and wrote the story herself.”

Martha’s picks

Big Dance Theater’s Paul Lazar will be moving to Annie-B Parsons’ choreography in “Cage Shuffle” at the American Realness Festival at Abrons Arts. It’s based on John Cage’s “Indeterminacy,” and will combine randomly excerpts from Cage’s written fragments with randomly selected pockets of Parsons’ dance ideas. Look for an odd and fascinating mix, performed by the ever-quirky and watchable Lazar.

Molly Lieber and Eleanor Smith, who have spent the last decade creating intimate, intense duets, will offer “Basketball” in a premiere at COIL 2017, presented by PS 122 at Baryshnikov Arts Center. If the past is any prologue, the piece is likely to find these two glorious dancers melding even further into each other, as they explore yet new twists on personal boundaries and possibilities.