Zephyr Dance's Molly Fe Strom and Michelle Kranicke in Shadows Across Our Eyes (photo by Cristina Tadeo.)
Clef Notes Chicagoland Journal for the Arts
To invite the public to discover its new space SITE/less, Zephyr Dance will premiere Artistic Director Michelle Kranicke’s evening-length work, Shadows Across Our Eyes, on April 26–May 5. Located at 1250 W. August Blvd., on the western border of Chicago’s North Branch Corridor between the West Town and Noble Square neighborhoods, SITE/less aims to be an experimental gallery/performance space/work place/community gathering space that explores the intersection of architecture and choreography.
“SITE/less as a performance space offers a new geographical layout to chart, different from the traditional floor plan of a Chicago storefront,” said Kranicke. The dance not only will emphasize the topographical aspect of the space, but also will navigate additional architectural elements designed by David Sundry, Kranicke’s husband.
Kranicke’s new work, Shadows Across Our Eyes, which she performs with Zephyr member Molly Fe Strom, is highly abstract, yet open to myriad images and ideas. While continuing her aesthetic investigations of the interaction between dance and architecture, Kranicke creates an atmosphere of tension as she and Strom move through the piece balancing their task of executing movement while encumbered and restrained, hands bound and wearing heels. Enhancing Kranicke’s choreography and Sundry's architecture are lighting by Richard Norwood and costumes and wearable sculpture by Amanda Lee Franck.
SITE/less will not exist in a traditional “finished” state, but rather continue to evolve and grow with time, functioning as an incubator, a laboratory, a physical structure, a dance, and a place where distinct art forms can speak directly to each other. In addition, SITE/less will work to facilitate connection with the public and promote social interaction by creating an atypical arena to host non-art events such as community meetings and pop-up dinners. The center will work to establish an open gathering zone not unlike a reading room, Internet hotspot location, long-term art installation, or other types of public space located within a private building.
Steeped in the milieu of experimental dance, Zephyr is known for pushing to the edge of the discipline to question current trends in dance making and the reduction of the art form to its most quantifiable, easily recognized patterns. The company stages its performances in various spaces, from the proscenium stage to large auditorium spaces to galleries, to allow viewers choices in how they encounter, and engage with, movement. The results are works that transform the atmosphere of a space with rich images, sensual movements and unexpected occurrences.
For more information about Zephyr and Site/less, visit zephyrdance.com.