When the modern-dance company Bangarra Dance Theatre from Australia promises to perform works inspired by aboriginal Dreamtime stories, they don't mean they'll be putting you to sleep. On the contrary: Their latest two-part work titled Awakenings is full of high-energy dances that blend modern movements with traditional Aboriginal practices, bringing to life 40,000-year-old legends about mythical gods who once roamed the outback. The first piece, Boomerang, uses authentic rituals to reflect on the wisdom of the Aboriginal elders and their spiritual connections with nature. The second, Brolga, concerns a young girl's initiation into womanhood at a sacred site. Bangarra's artistic director Stephen Page, who is of Aboriginal descent, discusses his work with Anna Kisselgoff, dance critic for The New York Times, on October 23 at 6 p.m.
Tue., Oct. 21, 7:30 p.m.; Oct. 23-25, 7:30 p.m., 2008