Chicago Theater Review: WINTER PAGEANT (Redmoon)

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by Erika Mikkalo on December 16, 2013

in Theater-Chicago

WAY BETTER THAN A PARTRIDGE IN A PEAR TREE

Redmoon’s seasonal performances are not events or even experiences, but passages to a fleeting world of contemporary fable, complete with masks, music, machines, puppetry, and particularly in this years’ Winter Pageant, dance.  Forty multi-talented performers take the stage to tell a pigeon’s tale: An unpresuming bird is chosen to go on a quest to correct a dastardly deed performed by his nemesis, a raven. The resulting new myth was inspired by Persian Farid ud-Din Atta’s twelfth-century mystical poem, The Conference of the Birds.

Kinnari Vora and Ashley Fargnoli, both of The Kalapriya Center for Indian Performing Arts, as Dove and Deer in Redmoon's WINTER PAGEANT.

Through forest and jungle, into the deep blue sea, the pigeon and his right-wing bird, a dove, dance with the birds of the air and the beasts of the field.  They encounter belly-dancing bunnies, fey deer, bad baboons, raucous monkeys, and menacing sharks. These assorted menageries showcase the talent of the collaborating dance troupes: Indian dancers of Kalapriya, Indonesian Dance of Illinois, belly dancers from Pineapple Dance Studio, and the young hip-hop dancers of The Happiness Club.

Aerialist Helena Reynolds as Phoenix on The Ladder Machine in Redmoon's WINTER PAGEANT.

Aerial artist Helena Reynolds performs suspended from an expected Redmoon apparatus. Surf-rock band the San Andreas Fault, led by Rob Warmowski, provides stellar accompaniment throughout – the raven is introduced with an appropriately bitchen riff. Córdova Hernández, from the Mexico City-based clown company La Piara, contributes consummate clowning, presenting the pigeon as a relatable everybird prevailing against adverse circumstance.

Pak Ngurah Kertayuda from Indonesian Dance of Illinois as The Hoopoe in Redmoon's WINTER PAGEANT.

The 2013 Winter Pageant conjures the spirit of the winter holiday of your choice, celebrating courage, community, friendship, reconciliation and light.  Visit Redmoon to experience the vivid colors, fancy machines, shadow-puppetry, and detailed masks associated with their aesthetic. A swing set and creation station are available for younger guests before the show, and the hour-long performance is timed to match their attention spans.

Pigeon (Fernando Córdova Hernández of La Piara) and Dove (Kinnari Vora of The Kalapriya Center for Indian Performing Arts) protect the light from the Raven Skeleton Army in Redmoon's WINTER PAGEANT.

photos by Al Zayed

Winter Pageant
Redmoon
Redmoon’s Pilsen home, 2120 S. Jefferson Street
scheduled to end on December 22, 2013
for tickets, call 312-850-8440 x123 or visit www.redmoon.org

for info on this and other Chicago Theater, visit http://www.TheatreinChicago.com

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