Dark Knights

The rest of the evening was not as interesting. Rob Scoggins' 1999 "Bologna Sandwich" is more performance piece than dance, amusing most of the time but often obscure. When Scoggins did dance, however, he was delightful, as was Alice Bloch as his muse. Kate Benkert Meacham's 1999 "One for My Baby," with Todd Weeks as a father marrying off one daughter after another, was sweet and touching but a bit wispy. Much of the handsome dancing arose from ballroom steps, and the company looked awfully classy throughout. Julie Voellinger's 1999 "Shades of Blue" also seemed a bit lacking in substance, although the Madco women, in violet satin chemises, shakin' their booties to John Lee Hooker, were certainly sexy and entertaining.

The two pieces by Sara Brummel, one opening the evening and the other closing the first part of the program, were the least successful, which no one would have known unless they were given a chance to succeed. You always take a chance, as performer or audience member, on new work, which is occasionally disappointing. But how disappointing is a work that gets Stacy West, one of the area's most engaging professional dancers, downstage center, moving so beautifully that you're inclined to tear up?

-- Harry Weber

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