Fall on the floor

FALL ARTS PREVIEW: The season's standout local and touring dance programs

Project Bandaloop dancers Damara Ganley, Rachael Lincoln, and Anje Lockhart are fearless in Bound(less).


FALL ARTS While by no means complete, these selections have enough variety to hopefully entice the experienced as well as the novice dancegoer.

Zhukov Dance Theatre Product 04, Yuri Zhukov's latest evening of dance, says a lot about the man. His work is solid, non-showy but sturdy, and, above all, beautifully performed. Zhukov's company is small, with four excellent dancers. (Sept. 1-3, ZSpace; Facebook: Zhukov Dance Theatre.)

Project Bandaloop When Bandaloop takes to the air — whether it's on skyscrapers in Hong Kong or El Capitan in Yosemite — users inevitably gasp. While unquestionably spectacular, it's the combination of grace and guts that makes Amelia Rudolph's choreography special. Bound(less) is the company's 20th anniversary piece. (Sept. 8-9, Mint Plaza, SF; Sept. 15-17, Great Wall, West Grand at Valley, Oakl; www.projectbandaloop.org.)

Mark Morris Dance Company According to Morris' biographer, Dido and Aeneas (1989) originally featured Morris himself dancing the rejected Queen of Carthage, and it had a whiff of the autobiographical about it. Those wounds have since long healed. What remains is a masterpiece of musicality, drama, and wit. These days Amber Star Merkens dances the double role of Dido and the Sorceress. (Sept. 16-18, Zellerbach Hall; calperfs.berkeley.edu.)

Maïmouna Coulibaly In Hééé Mariamou, urban pop culture gave Parisian choreographer-dancer Coulibaly the vocabulary for her sardonic comedy about growing up female in a Franco-African community. Two years later she and her women dancers are returning — with a nod to Roger Vadim? — in And God Created Woman in a World That Shake. "Shake" stands in for "sins." (Oct. 21-23, Dance Mission Theater; www.dancemission.com.)

If you missed Merce Cunningham Dance Company's blowout at Cal Performances, you have another chance to wish these magisterial dancers farewell. Before the company disbands at the end of December, they'll alight at Stanford in Cunningham's last work, the autumnal Nearly 90². (Nov. 1, Memorial Auditorium; livelyarts.stanford.edu.)

Shantala Shivalingappa Shivalingappa's 2010 SF debut surprised even seasoned dance observers with the elegance, wit, and musicality of her Kuchipudi — one of the less familiar forms of classical Indian dance. Four exquisite musicians had traveled with her. Happy to say, they'll do so again. (Nov. 1, Herbst Theatre; www.performances.org.)

Wayne McGregor/Random Dance San Francisco Ballet watchers may have seen Wayne McGregor's Eden/Eden (2005) and Chroma (2006) as one of the more radical British choreographers rethinking the ballet vocabulary. Now he is bringing his own company in 2008's Entity, in which he and his dancers continue exploring the physics of movement. (Nov. 11-12, Yerba Buena Center for the Arts; www.ybca.org.)

Dance Brigade What do Serge Diaghilev, Susan Sontag, and Krissy Keefer have in common? A prominent streak of white hair, for one thing, but more pertinently perhaps the ability to pursue clearly perceived goals and overcome adversity, plus a nose for politics. Keefer's Wallflower Order/Dance Brigade celebrates its 35th Anniversary with (partially free) reprises of the Great Liberation Upon Hearing and other dances. (Nov. 18-20, Yerba Buena Center for the Arts; www.ybca.org.)

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