Going for baroque 

Dance Theatre of Oregon presents dance, comedy theatre all in one

Who: Dance Theatre of Oregon

Where: Millennium Place, 7 p.m.

Having a bad hair day?

Nothing a curly powdered wig and some rouge can’t fix.

The Dance Theatre of Oregon takes the grandiose out of Mozart’s baby grand, spoofing Baroque mannerism akin to the time period.

"People go nuts over the show, and we get to stay in great places while we perform," says Marc Siegel, artistic director and co-founder of The Dance Theatre of Oregon.

Together with partner Pamela Lehan-Siegel, the two bring a rhythmic parody of fun in their latest travelling performance, Greatest Hits on Tour.

The two dancers met while working with touring companies based out of New York City. After years spent touring with different shows, developing their own company was a natural.

They felt there was a place for dance that also incorporated a lively, theatrical element. The company, based in Eugene, Oregon, maintains a different touch alongside the town’s one other ballet company.

"Some audiences consider dance to be quite serious. We want to take (that) serious note out of dance performance," says Siegel, whom you might also find humming jazz from the ’40s.

Their mission is to combine modern dance, ballet, and theatre to give audiences a feel for the combined arts.

Siegel completed an MA in choreography from UCLA, performed as Mike in A Chorus Line in New York, and taught modern dance at Yale University.

Lehan-Siegel completed her BFA at Sarah Lawrence College, thereafter performing with the Ballet West of Salt Lake City, establishing the Lehan and Company/Dance in 1986 in New York, and acting with the Eugene Festival of Musical Theatre.

The show includes some serious Baroque fooforaw, among other comedy sketches.

"The comedy helps (convey a story), and each dance is totally different from the other."

The Baroque period, which involved an ornate style of dress and ornamentation for members of the upper classes, gets tilted on its wigs by the dance troupe.

Additional sketches include Three Legged Lady, Tell Me Mother Goose, and David Parson’s Sleep Study, a sketch about "people in their pajamas."

"One guy does belly rolls to this type of Klezmer music, and he always manages to get audiences clapping!" says Siegel.

The cast for the show features Emily Russell, Kristin Wilson, Darrell Shaft, Eric C. Smith, Sheri Farnsworth, and Kyra Ynez Siegel.

The Dance Theatre of Oregon is a resident company of the Hult Center for the Performing Arts, which houses two theatres, one at 2,500 seats, and one with 500 seats.

For information and tickets call the Millennium Place Box office at (604) 935-8418, or Ticketmaster. Tickets are $23 day of the show, $18 in advance.

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