Dancing to beat the band

July 23, 1998|By Judith Green

As a choreographer, Doug Hamby rushes in where angels fear to tread.

In his program at the Dance Place this weekend, Hamby and his University of Maryland, Baltimore County-based company will journey from the lyrical romance of "Quintet" (whose composer, Scott Pinder, suppports his musical gift by running the TelePrompTer on ABC-TV's "Nightline") to the exuberant and celebratory "Opus 98," with a percussion accompaniment, "Genderang Senga" by Ben Pasaribu, for brake drums, tom-toms and woodblocks, played live by Tom Goldstein of the UMBC faculty.

The most unusual performer, however, is Maurice Tombe, a cheerful, bright yellow, six-legged robot about the size of a cat. Maurice, whose individual computer-controlled units are made by Lynx Motion, was constructed by Tony Farquhar, a professor of mechanical engineering at UMBC, and programmed by Todd McCleaf. Maurice is destined to justify his $4,000 cost by deactivating unexploded anti-personnel land mines, but for right now he dances a mean beguine.

Doug Hamby Dance will perform at 8 p.m. Saturday and 7 p.m. Sunday at Dance Place, 3225 Eighth St. N.E., Washington, a two-block walk from the Brookland/CUA Metro stop on the Red line. Tickets are $12, students and seniors $10. Call 202-269-1600. The company will give a free, abbreviated program at 7 p.m. Thursday at the George Meany Center for Labor Studies, 10000 New Hampshire Ave., Silver Spring. Call 301-431-6400.

Pub Date: 7/23/98

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