Lucky Plush in Trip the Light Fantastic

Chicago's dance season opens full force in September with exciting festivals, company seasons, and premieres of new choreography. New and noteworthy this year for both balletomanes and neophytes is Audience Architect's Dance Around Town Sampler Pack, a first of it's kind, limited time offering for dance lovers AND for those who want to discover more dance in Chicago.

Get discounted tickets to your favorite Chicago dance company's Fall 2016 performance and try a few new shows as well! Dance Around Town allows you to select 3 different shows between September and December for between 25 and 58% off the original price of each ticket. These performances represent outstanding artistry in different dance styles at venues throughout Chicago — create your own fall dance season today! Quantities are limited so act fast.

Here are 5 September highlights from Chicago's dance scene:


An Evening of Dance with MacArthur Fellows
Hot Ticket! FREE to the Public

An Evening of Dance with MacArthur Fellows (September 16, 7:30 PM, Harris Theater) will honor 35 years of the iconic MacArthur Fellowship program. The program, free to the public, will include:

  • Kyle Abraham's "Dearest Home," performed by;
  • Mark Morris's "Pacific," performed by Mark Morris Dance Group;
  • Merce Cunningham's "Springweather" and "People," performed by Erin Dowd and Forrest Hersey of the Merce Cunningham Trust;
  • Susan Marshall's "Kiss," performed by Hubbard Street Dance Chicago; and
  • Michelle Dorrance's "Boards and Chains," performed by Dorrance Dance.
*Tickets currently sold out; contact box office for up-to-the-minute performance availability information 312.334.7777


Harvest Chicago Contemporary Dance Festival
Two Weekends, 20 Dance Companies

Harvest Chicago Contemporary Dance Festival

Harvest Chicago Contemporary Dance Festival (September 16-17 and 23-24, 2016, Ruth Page Center for the Arts) presents its 7th annual event. The Festival was founded in 2010 as a way to share and celebrate the work of practicing contemporary dance artists and companies. Producers Nicole Gifford and Melissa Mallinson have gathered a roster of artists and companies from Chicago and around the country. Chicago audiences can see a different lineup of dynamic, innovative dance works each weekend, with the same program offered both Friday and Saturday nights. Buy now: festival tickets ($25) on sale online.


Fall Concert Series: Cerqua Rivera Dance Theatre
Four World Premieres and a Full Jazz Band

Cerqua Rivera Dance Theatre's Fall Concert Series (September 29-30 and October 1, 7 PM, Links Hall; October 1 4 PM and 7 PM) is the one chance this year to see their unique combination of live music, original choreography, and visual art performed by a full jazz band and complete ensemble of dancers. Four brand-new works will be premiered.

  • Renowned Chicago choreographer Sherry Zunker collaborates with CRDT co-founder Joe Cerqua to create "Between Us," a sexy new piece that explores issues of intimacy and our closest personal relationships.
  • Award-winning choreographer Stephanie Martinez and acclaimed jazz violinist James Sanders explore breaking up and moving on in the emotional "Shiver."
  • CRDT co-founders Wilfredo Rivera and Joe Cerqua take on immigration to America with "American Catracho," exploring the reasons people move, their harrowing journeys, and the complicated relationship they find when they arrive.
  • Monique Haley, Marc Macaranas, and Raphaelle Ziemba collaborate with composer Stu Greenspan's arrangements of Miles Davis' music to create "Corner Sketches, A Tribute to Miles Davis." Chicago trumpet great Pharez Whitted takes up the role of Davis.

Buy now: admission tickets ($36-44) on sale online.


Ensemble Español Spanish Dance Theater presents Flamenco Passion
A 40th Anniversary Season Finale

Ensemble Español Spanish Dance Theater makes its debut in the Auditorium Theater's "Made In Chicago" series (7:30 PM, September 29), with "Flamenco Passion," a showcase of classical, contemporary, and traditional Spanish dance. The program includes:

  • Ensemble Español founder Dame Libby Komaiko's stunning masterpiece Bolero;
  • Mil Clavos, by former Ensemble Español and Hubbard Street Dance Chicago principal dancer Ron De Jesus, which gives modern context to traditional Spanish dance; and
  • Iroko, a Flamenco contemporary ballet piece choreographed by Nuevo Ballet Español founders Angel Rojas and Carlos Rodriguez.

Buy now: admission tickets ($29-68) on sale online.


Lucky Plush presents Trip the Light Fantastic: The Making of SuperStrip
Superheroes Combine with Comic-book Style Graphics & Effects

Lucky Plush returns to the Dance Center with "Trip The Light Fantastic: The Making of SuperStrip" (September 29-30 and October 1) in its signature blend of nuanced dialogue, complex choreography and off-the-cuff improvisation.

SuperStrip follows a group of washed-up superheroes attempting to reinvent themselves by starting a nonprofit think tank for do-gooders. Complex training missions and specialized movement techniques bring structure to their collective, but the unlikely supers are unable to find a shared mission and brand. In the struggle to achieve consensus, they discover that real-world problems are far more complex than singular forces of evil, and having power is part of the problem. Buy now: admission tickets ($24-30) on sale online.


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