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Heat Wave

Burn the floor 
The touring edition of the hit Broadway dance show Burn the Floor  is currently in a brief run at Hollywood’s Pantages Theatre. This attempt to bridge the somewhat elitist form of dance theater with the more popular genre of feel-good Broadway fluff is a harmlessly engaging if scarcely unforgettable enterprise. Matching performers and the sensibility of TV’s hit phenomenon So You Think You Can Dance (including alumni thereof—Anya Garnis, Pasha Kovalev, Robbie Kmetoni, Janette Manrara, Karen Hauer) with a wide variety of high-energy dance styles, the production seems determined to wow even the most jaded among us into submission.

By evidence of the audience reaction to the opening performance, the gambit largely pays off. Few spectators seemed to care that there is no book—or any other discernible linking device—to tie together this long string of flashy production numbers. Dance styles such as the Lindy, the Tango, the Foxtrot, the Charleston, the Cha-cha, Viennese waltz, the Rumba, and Samba lead up the climactic jive classic “Proud Mary,” showing the talented troupe off to good advantage. Sexy bodies and even sexier dance moves—plenty of swiveling hips and suggestive gyrations—heat up the proceedings, as the performers show off their consummate dance skills. They predictably run through the aisles at times, adhering to a cliche of current musicals. Director-choreographer Jason Gilkison helms the dazzling proceedings. The run continues through May 8.

--Les Spindle
Photo by Joan Marcus

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