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Review: CTT’s Superhero Tap Dance Opera

By Amy Mikel in Arts & Entertainment on Jun 30, 2008 6:44PM

CTT_Hourglass.jpgThe title of Chicago Tap Theater's new production, The Hourglass and the Poisoned Pen: a Superhero Tap Dance Opera piqued our interest immediately, but this show is no gimmick. The production is the collaborative brainchild of artistic director Mark Yonally and comic book artist Andrew Pepoy, and is meant to be a way for Yonally to further challenge his dancers, as well as the way his audiences see tap.

Pepoy, who will be one of the featured artists at the upcoming Comic-Con International in San Diego, helped to co-write and design the production, unifying the dancing with the comic book theme. The storyline is the standard comic book battle between good and evil, and while main plot points are projected onto a backdrop, the story is primarily told by the dancing. Tap is absolutely the star of the show.

Throughout, each company member is given ample opportunity to showcase their tapping aptitude, thanks to Yonally’s intricate choreography. The show is a relaxed way to see some high-intensity tap dancing combined with an innovative theme, and if you happen to be inspired to buy a pair of tap shoes, consider taking a CTT tap class, available at locations all over the city.

Athenaeum Theatre, 2936 N. Southport Ave., Studio 3, 6/27-7/20, $18-30