Tere O’Connor Dance Presents Chicago Debut

Photo Credit: Julieta Cervantes
Photo Credit: Julieta Cervantes

If you’re feeling political fatigue in the last week on the 2016 presidential election, choreographer Tere O’Connor has the perfect show for you. Tere O’Connor Dance presents two pieces, Undersweet and Transcendental Daughter, running together at The Dance Center at Columbia College Chicago November 3 through the 5. The show offers a decidedly apolitical piece of art.

“I feel what’s happening right now in the arts is a lot of people are taking political stances…I don’t care about art as a rebranding of someone’s [political] status,” O’Connor said. “I want to make a piece that’s not my opinion of the world, but something that reflects it.”

The show consist of Undersweet, a duet exploring facades, sexual desires, and the tension between individuals’ outward selves and private lives, and Transcendental Daughter, a trio that recently premiered in New York City. O’Connor said these pieces are a departure from the the large group works he’s been creating in the past few years. He’s using the duet and trio formats to explore a more delicate use of the body. More than themes, the pieces are explorations of abstraction, movement, and non-linguistic communication.

“They don’t necessarily fit together other than they’re two different versions of looking at abstractions,” O’Connor said. ” It’s been interesting to work from such huge amounts of complexity down to there not being that many objects.”

As part of the series, O’Connor is participating in residency activities with the dance students at Columbia College, something he is looking forward to.

“Young people can really make you question what you think you’re so certain about,” he said. O’Connor will lead students in classes and conversation during his Chicago stay.

He said he’s excited to bring his work to Chicago–a city he loves but has never brought his company to before. As an instructor at University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, his students and peers plan to travel to Chicago to watch the show, which he hopes his audiences finds a connection with.

“I’m not trying to make something cryptic, I’m trying to make something [the audience] can bring themselves to and project themselves on…let it kind of blend with their brain network,” O’Connor said. “The audience is a partner is creating an understanding of what’s going on it the work.

“Performances are November 3–5 at 7:30 p.m. at the Dance Center of Columbia College Chicago. For information and tickets, call 312-369-8330 and or visit colum.edu/dancecenterpresents.

Miriam Finder Annenberg
Miriam Finder Annenberg