Saturday, May 22, 1999

Dancers whisper director's fitting finale

Enquirer contributor

        “This is the way the dancing ends, not with a bang but a whisper,” read the program notes for Disappearing Acts, a Dance Projects presentation at the Aronoff's Jarson-Kaplan Theater. And so it does.

        After this weekend's performances, Dance Projects as a performing group is history. And after 19 years of inventing contemporary dance in Cincinnati in her frank and earthy way, director Shawn Womack is leaving for California.

        In keeping with the way she likes to do things, Ms. Womack is surrounded by collaborators — co-choreographers Kelly Gottesman and Cheryl Wallace, actor Mark Mocahbee, artists Cheryl Couch and Linda Reiff, and singer Terri Templeton.

        Chris Dahlgren has written an engaging score that goes from marches to dark melodies to dreamy voices. Set design is Kathy Kohl's hanging ropes that come and go and are all that's needed to set a locale — curtains at one point, a prison, and later garden vines.

        There are scenes but no story line or dialogue, only a few recorded words; each examines dreams and fears from disappearance and loss. They come at you in layers of information, one idea overlapping another with stories and movement that hint at life's ups and downs, loves and death.

        Coming out of a three-year Dance Projects collaboration with 11 Tristate Catholic schools, Disappearing Acts involves children, parents and teachers. With 160 in the audience for Friday's opening, fifty people took part in a variety of roles, including children in masks (designed by Ms. Couch), members of the Purcell Marian High School Marching Band and others as journeyers and tiny sprites, creating a ruckus before the ending sneaks up with a whisper.

        Disappearing Acts continues at 8 p.m. today and 3 p.m. Sunday at the Aronoff Center's Jarson-Kaplan Theater. 241-7469.


St. Ursula Senior Tea melds ideals
Has zero tolerance in schools gone too far?
Light rail to need new bridge
Prisons change rules for moms
Boy, 7, and mom arrested at school
First off-track-betting parlor could be open in Ohio by fall
Gamblers from SW Ohio among casinos' big losers
Record Hoosier Lotto jackpot fails to woo buyers
City police allocating federal grant
Cocaine and attack led to death
Fox Highway? It's up to agency
Jury says strangler should die
Kenton winnows 'wanted' warrants
Light turnout expected for primary
Movie on nuclear waste panned
Paper kayak takes Miami crew to competition
Trio sought in beating death
Pregnant senior loses valedictorian honor
- Dancers whisper director's fitting finale
Tribute to Shaw sublime memorial
A new look at Big Bone Lick
Molester charged with lying to immigration
Caution made on new betting
Ex-officer files suit against village
G. Vehr hired as UC lobbyist
Mason summer concerts get gift
Princeton seeks 3.95-mill levy
Report: Central State presidents erred
Strikers get added restrictions
Suit seeks to recover seized money