Flavorpill’s Guide to Dance at the New York Fringe Festival


The Unsightful Nanny by Jonathan Riedel; photo by Julie Lemberger

Navigating the New York International Fringe Festival is notoriously overwhelming — unless you’re looking for dance performances. Of the roughly 200 shows at this year’s festival, only six fall under the heading of dance (we’ve excluded musicals, which may contain dancing or some approximation thereof, as well as a one-woman show about a dance therapist). While it would be nice to see dance better represented at the Fringe, the upside is that the process of choosing what to see won’t make your head explode. Heck, you can even see all six!*

Here, we make the process even easier with our handy guide.

*Convenience bonus: All dance performances take place at the Robert Moss Theater.

Circuits, Patricia Noworol Dance Company

Polish-German choreographer Patricia Noworol, who founded PNDC in 2008, creates multimedia works that explore “primal human responses to emotional trauma.” Circuits, the company’s second evening-length piece, contrasts the onstage glamour of dancers in performance with the mundane realities of their lives. Performance time: 1 hour

Dates and times: 8/23, 4 p.m.; 8/25, 4:30 p.m.; 8/26, 8 p.m.; 8/28, 7:45 p.m.; 8/30, 1:45 p.m.

Dances in Funny, Claire Porter and Ara Fitzgerald

In an art form that tends to take itself a bit too seriously, dance comedian Claire Porter is a rare gem. This show is a good choice for people who like their funny dark. Performance time, 1 hour, 5 minutes

Dates and times: 8/22, 9:30 p.m.; 8/23, noon; 8/25, 9:30 p.m.

Ectospasms, Lola Lola Dance Theatre with the Institute for for the Study of Performance and Spirituality

This multimedia dance theater piece takes us back to 1848, when famed mediums Maggie and Kate Fox first made contact with the dead. Written by Edmund B. Lingan with choreography by Jessica Bonenfant of Lola Lola Dance Theatre. Performance time: 1 hour, 15 minutes

Dates and times: 8/22, noon & 7:30 p.m.; 8/23, 9:30 p.m.

Lola Lola Dance Theatre in Ectospasms

Face the Music…and Dance!, Tina Croll, Heidi Latsky, Maura Nguyen Donohue, Julian Barnett and Noa Sagie

Take that, economy! Five New York choreographers put a positive spin on our current economic woes with a program of works celebrating strength in unity. There’s savings in unity, too – five top-notch choreographers for the price of one. Talk about a recession buster. Performance time: 1 hour, 15 minutes

Dates and times: 8/23, 2 p.m.; 8/27, 9 p.m.; 8/29, noon.

Noa Sagie; photo by Patricia Kantzos

Testify, ETCH Dance Co.

Elisha Clark Halpin, head of Penn State University’s department of dance, founded ETCH in 2008 in order to “create dance grounded in life experiences.” In Testify, her all-female company explores unrequited love, warfare and other side effects of the human condition. Performance time: 30 minutes

Dates and times: 8/25, 8:15 p.m.; 8/26, 4:15 p.m.; 8/27, 5:45 p.m.; 8/29, 8:45 p.m.; 8/30, 3:30 p.m.

Ukrainian Eggs: Terrible Tales of Tragedy and AlleGorey, Riedel Dance Theater

Choreographer Jonathan Riedel has a knack for bringing Edward Gorey’s twisted tales to life onstage. The former member of Limon Dance Company has created four Gorey works in the last seven years, and he brings back all of them, plus one new one — The Undergarden — for his company’s performance at the Fringe. Featuring guest artists from Limon. Performance time: 1 hour, 5 minutes

Dates and times: 8/25, 6:15 p.m.; 8/27, 7 p.m.; 8/28, 2:15 p.m.; 8/29, 6:45 p.m.; 8/30, 4:45 p.m.