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March is for Dance Fans

Ballet Idaho's 'NewDance, Up Close' and Balance Dance Company's 'Balance Alchemy'

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For fans of dance, March was like being a kid in a candy store.

Ballet Idaho presented the spring offering of its NewDance, Up Close, a series of new works by company dancers and freelance choreographers. Balance Dance Company presented Balance Alchemy, a program of new works

NewDance, Up Close opened strong with Daniel Ojeda's "With All Disrespect," a dance defined by focus and clarity.

"Ringkiri," a moving work by Phyllis Rothwell Affrunti, featured dancers on Lazy Susans, illustrating motion and stasis as aspects of romance. Ballet Idaho dancer Adrienne Kerr was elegant and graceful in Lydia Sakolsky-Basquill's "Fear. Unveiled.," an anxiety-ridden stress test on the relationships between sound and music, and motion and dance. The highlight of the program was Edson's "Missed Migration," an intensely emotional experience with the energy and scale of a full ballet.

In Balance Dance's Balance Alchemy, Molly Heller's "Outside the Lines" opened a program of problem-solving and science-themed dances. In Sadi Mosko's "Wherever There Is," dancers explored fission and cohesion, while Amanda Micheletty's "On Memory" tackled orbital motion and chaos. "Time:space," by Artistic Director Leah Stephens Clark, and Christine Chang Gillespie, a former NASA engineer, was Alchemy's most explicit treatment of problem solving with its meditations on chaos, resolution and order. While Alchemy comprised several thoughtful thematic works, like Ciera Shaver's geometrical-themed "125," its soul was Johanna Kirk's "Tough Love," which drew from the nervous energy of failed relationships and flawed reconciliations in a way that left the audience stunned.