Deborah Hay Dance Company

Firmly believing that anyone can dance
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PREVIEW Deborah Hay may not be a household name among today's dance fans. But take even a cursory look at the Judson Dance Theater movement of the '60s, an influence that still courses through dance like some subterranean stream of inspiration, and her name will pop up. Again and again. One of the pioneers of pedestrian movement and a firm believer that anyone can dance, the My Body, the Buddhist author moved quickly from performance to dance as a communal activity to dance as a spiritual exploration. In Austin, Texas — where she settled in 1976 — she developed workshops for dancers and devotees who flocked there as if to nirvana. For a while she had been creating huge circle dances and dances to be performed without audiences. In the mid-'90s she started to focus on solo choreography by designing pieces that individual dancers could adapt. Moving in yet another direction, last year she created Mountain with Seattle-based dancers Gaelen Hanson, Peggy Piacenza, and Amelia Reeber. She said of the work, "A mountain has a shape, yet we know it is not fixed. It is easy to imagine it teeming with life. How is it that we look for shape in the dancing body and forget to imagine it teeming with life?" (Rita Felciano)

DEBORAH HAY DANCE COMPANY Thurs/29–Sat/31, 8 p.m., $18–$25. ODC Theater, 3157 17th St., SF. (415) 863-9834, www.odctheater.org

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