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The naked truth about Collage Dance Theatre's "Guide to an Exhibitionist"

September 22, 2008 |  9:30 am


Do any of these people look nude to you?

It seems that Collage Dance Theatre may be overstating the case by writing in its press release that, in its interactive show "A Guide to the Exhibitionist" (Oct. 24-26 at Pasadena's Armory Center for the Arts), "live performers in an oversize frame expose the mysteries of the nude." Only mystery here is why people in clothes are being called nude.

A spokeswoman for the company acknowledges that they don't mean nude nude -- rather, performers will reveal the beauty of the human form in artful glimpses betwixt and between the sort of tasteful drapery worn by marble statues at, say, the Getty Villa. Let us hope that this revelation -- or, rather, lack of it -- won't hinder ticket sales, which we're told are already brisk.

And indeed, clothes or no clothes, this new "hour long, multidimensional living art performance" promises to venture outside the norm in contemporary dance concerts. Besides watching the nudes-in-clothes move within the frame, audience members will have the opportunity to participate in what the company calls an "interactive self-portrait": With the use of a microphone, camera and headset, the audience member may engage his or her "secret self" in conversation with a wired dancer behind a projection scrim.

According to the spokeswoman, audience members may reveal their secret selves but are encouraged to keep their clothes on.

-- Diane Haithman

Photos by Shannon Rodriguez