The old-school method of making dance and theater with the vision of a single choreographer or director is becoming rare. Because of funding demands, academic residencies, or just an itch to find new paths to creativity, group dynamics — so-called performance research — informs much of the work being created today.
This week, Headlong Dance Theater presents Avalanche at the Performance Garage, an earnest dance theater piece driven by all the aforementioned elements.
Performed by five professors of dance and theater from Maine's Colby and Bates Colleges, it was vintage Headlong, with enough cerebral zaniness and things to watch to engage you even when you couldn't figure out where it was going. And at Thursday's opening, it had a built-in equally earnest — and savvy — audience that included members of the Society of Dance History Scholars, in town for their annual conference.