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A good week for the arts

Sometimes living in a college town is pretty good (remind me of that next home football game, would you). This week we saw Pilobolus Dance Troupe on Tuesday, and Bruce Springsteen on Thursday. You might not think they had anything in common, but both were wonderful high-energy shows.

I hadn’t seen Pilobolus since I was in college, so possibly before a couple of the younger dancers were born (eep). An incredibly creative modern dance troupe named for a fungus? How could I not love them? I was utterly fascinated by “Automaton,” the opening number, and would love to watch it again. Several times, from different angles. I didn’t realize that the troupe had been heavily involved with Ok-Go’s videos. Here’s one that features Pilobolus: they performed this live on Tuesday. It was entrancing to see the dancers on the glass table and the projected image simultaneously.

The troupe also performed a wonderful live version of Ok-Go’s “Skyscraper” video, complete with real-time costume changes and projected background. It took six dancers to pull it off. Only two of the six were female, so some of the tangoing couples were male. The piece was clever and energetic, and it’s really too bad that I can’t find a video of the live performance for you.

We sprung for floor tickets for Bruce Springsteen’s show, which meant standing on concrete for five hours. The show started nearly an hour late for technical reasons, and then the Boss played for three and a half hours to a packed house. Springsteen can work a crowd, and it was solid entertainment from start to finish. He spent a lot of time out in the crowd, and had several people up on stage with him. He also did an excellent job making sure that each of the band members got some time up front; everyone looked like they were there because it was fun, not just because it paid the bills.

Bruce ended with “Shout” and had the crowd up and dancing even at the end of a long night.

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