When: July 5-7, 8 p.m. 2012
Few things in life are as reliable as the annual visit by the athletic dance company Pilobolus to the American Dance Festival. Even if you've seen them perform here for enough years to have become a bit jaded about their muscular blend of dance, technology and cirque performance, your face always breaks into smiles of pleasure and your mouth always allows sounds of happy astonishment when you go. Why deny it: You like Pilobolus.
The company presents their typical four shows over three days, including a children's matinee on Saturday afternoon. This visit features two world-premiere ADF commissions, both of which exemplify the collaborative spirit of the troupe. The gravity-defying Azimuth was developed with world-renowned juggler Michael Moschen, whose dexterity and creativity has garnered a MacArthur "Genius" award. Another piece comes from the company's partnership with Belgian choreographer Sidi Larbi Cherkaoui and takes place in a "mirrored world between Tron and Metropolis." Pilobolus classics such as the shadow-dance excerpt The Transformation (2009) are mixed in with the premieres. Performances run Thursday–Saturday at 8 p.m., with a Saturday matinee at 1 p.m. Tickets are $18–$51; visit americandancefestival.org. —Chris Vitiello