All architecture is created by human beings to contain their lives, but houses particularly so. Homes are the space—usually safe, sometimes otherwise—where we play out our most intimate dramas, joys and dreams. Choreographer and Artistic Director Elana Jacobs and her collaborators have been making performances in and about homes across the country under the name CabinFever and, considering the moniker, what better month than February to bring the project to Chicago with an evening of music, dance and art in the historic Florsheim Mansion? Though not as private as past CabinFever locales in Seattle, Denver, Santa Fe and Isle La Motte, Vermont (if you have $1,255 burning a hole in your pocket you can book a night at the Florsheim on Airbnb), the former home of shoe heiress and sculptor Lillian Florsheim has long been a center for the arts and has a vast and fascinating architecture for the four dancers and four musicians on the project to explore. Jacobs works with collaborators from across the country who gather—usually only for a few days—to meet with the family who owns the home, hear their stories, get immersed in the space and craft a performance that takes the audience on a journey through rooms, passageways and backyards. Jacobs says that it’s always surprising how moving CabinFever performances are. She says, “We have an emotional attachment to the place.” (Sharon Hoyer)
CabinFever at the Florsheim Mansion, 1328 North State. Friday-Sunday, February 19-21 at 7:30pm. Tickets at lillian.brownpapertickets.com. $13 general, $10 artist or student.