SPDW offers their company as the medium for the next installment of Peter Carpenter’s uniquely political brand of dance theater. Carpenter is interested in the social and political implications of the body on stage, explored memorably in his humorous and scathing send-up of the Reagan era, “My Fellow Americans.” This piece is the latest in Carpenter’s ongoing series about wealth and excess entitled “Rituals of Abundance for Lean Times.” Chapter 5 is subtitled “Lavish Possession” and is a treatise on ownership of things both material and intellectual. A Carpenter press release really makes you want to do your reading before the show; he cites two influences for this piece: a book by Ruby Payne on poverty and class and Buddhist text on the importance of being spiritually present by Pema Chödrön.
Joanna Rosenthal, artistic director of SPDW, has a premiere that investigates the tension of art versus entertainment through the lens of vaudeville. The pressures of scrambling for funding, confronting artistic rejection and the doubt always present in the creative process inspired her to look to the short-lived genre, immensely popular in its time, to reflect on how performers in our society are valued and judged. (Sharon Hoyer)
At the Victory Gardens Biograph Theater, 2433 North Lincoln, (773)871-3000. March 8–10 at 8pm. $24.