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Blasting Boundaries: Printz Dance Project

Modern dance can be as indecipherable as a bright blue bathtub sitting in the middle of a gallery floor. But Printz Dance Project takes the best of the genre and filters out the head-scratching, inserting everyday life into fluid athleticism and articulated grace. Blending universal emotion with a gleeful patois of dance disciplines, the choreography will suck you in – whether you understand the precise difficulty of stopping a pirouette just there without toppling over or you can’t distinguish African dance from pigeons strutting down Market Street.

Now in its tenth year, Printz Dance Project pulls out the best of past seasons to celebrate. Stacey Printz explores her personal foray into family in Treading, which translates the joy and utter bafflement of new motherhood into movement. Birds, Bees, and Other Metaphors probes human instincts and patterns, profoundly echoed by the winged, and might I add, less brainy honey bees. L7 is a raw look at the boundaries of the human mind and how those walls transfer onto the treatment of its fellows (see: racism).

Glossy limbs move at high velocity in a hip yet seasoned demonstration of how easily the definitions constricting dance forms melt away and reassemble into something completely new. From its modern dance roots, the choreography explodes in a fusion of ballet, hip-hop, and ethnic dance. Set to music by beatboxer Carlos Aquirre and violinist Jon Sung – their limbs may be less glossy, but their rhythm kicks canned stereo ass – each piece has a textured flow that finds unexpected shapes and galvanizes the eye and the id. 

Plays November 5-7 at Cowell Theater, Fort Mason Center. Tickets $20 general/$18 students. Call 415-345-7575 or visit www.printzdance.org.