"Gotham City" (Chicago Crash Dance): Dark and Magnificent Spectacle!

"Gotham City" (Chicago Crash Dance):  Dark and Magnificent Spectacle!

#126. I’ve seen Gotham City through the eyes of Adam West, Michael Keaton, Val Kilmer, George Clooney, and Christian Bale.  Each of these batmen saw their crime-infested hometown differently, but never like this…

Chicago Dance Crash, in association with DCA Theatre, presents the world premiere of GOTHAM CITY.   From sunset to sunrise, Gotham is on lock down for the protection of civilians.  In the dark, the city is infested with undesirables.  The underworld rules the night.   When some curfew violators get stuck outside, they must battle the forces to survive until day.  With the streets filled with gangsters, hookers, FBI and clowns, it’s going to be one helluva unforgettable night.  GOTHAM CITY is a dark and magnificent spectacle!

From lights down, this show crushes it!  Lighting Designers Mike Goebel and Joshua Paul Weckesser deliver drama in shadows and spotlights.  The heart-pounding score is an eclectic (Ludacris to Danny Kaye) collection edited and compiled by DJ Johnny Romano, Mikey Rioux, DanQwan Gibson, Dopples 3000, and DJ Ganger.  It’s the perfect soundtrack for this dangerous war zone.  Costumes, makeup and even tattoos (designed by Laura Maceika) are a cross between ordinary street clothes, gangster garb and circus attire.  This futuristic look is casual demented chic.  The whole vibe is comic book graphic. The design team definitely get us into the city limits and the dancers hold us captive for the duration.

Choreographer Jessica Deahr takes Mark Hackman’s clever plot and gives it legs.  The thirty dancers tell the story in an amazing mingling of visceral and whimsical.  Anger dominates the stage as the ensemble attacks each other in stylized athleticism.  People are bashing into other people, the floor and the sideboards.  It looks painful and real!  The dancers have ferocious physicality! Deahr mixes genres for a Black-Swan-meets-Thriller-at-Barnum-Bailey entertainment.  Led by Brian Humpherys, the clowns inject this playful, yet sinister, energy.  A wickedly-smiling Humpherys taps, pirouettes, and dominates Gotham.  Other standouts are dance partners Mary Tarpley and Charlie Cutler.  This tourist couple seem to be dysfunctional but that’s an illusion.  Tarpley and Cutler’s dancing is a beautiful union of timing precision.  Wow!  But my favorite is Chantelle Mrowka, street urchin turned warrior princess.  The captivating Mrowka leaps, dives, backflips across the stage at a frightening velocity.

No need to wait until July 20th to get your batman fix.  Christian Bale may be able to act but he can’t dance, not like this.  No one can!  These dancers are phenomenal! *This* GOTHAM CITY should be your summer destination.

Running Time:  Two hours and ten minutes includes an intermission

At DCA Storefront Theatre, 66 E. Randolph

Written by Mark Hackman

Choreographed by Jessica Deahr

Fridays and Saturdays at 7:30pm

Sundays at 3pm

Thru July 15th

Buy Tickets at www.dcatheater.org

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