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Ira Glass combines radio with dance for his show at the Englert: ‘Three Acts, Two Dancers, One Radio Host’


“Three Acts, Two Dancers, One Radio Host”

Englert Theatre — Saturday, October 18 at 7:30 p.m.

Radio meets…dance? That’s the irreverent idea behind “Three Acts, Two Dancers, One Radio Host,” a dance production collaboration between public radio personality Ira Glass and choreographer Monica Bill Barnes, coming to The Englert this Saturday at 7:30 p.m..

Though there might seem to be very little common ground between radio and dance, Glass was drawn to collaborate with Barnes, and her dancing partner Anna Bass, precisely because of how their storytelling approach to dance mirrored the humanizing style characteristic of Glass’s WBEZ-produced This American Life radio program.

“They were enacting these moments from real life of awkwardness and triumph and hope and awkwardness, a lot of awkwardness,” Glass said in a interview with the Washington Post. “It had a documentary quality.”

Just like an episode of This American Life, the touring production is divided into three acts, each overlaying modern dance with Glass’s radio narratives and interviews, including those that draw on the dance career experiences of Barnes and Bass. Though Glass’s role is primarily as an emcee, assurances have been made that audiences will get to see Glass take the stage to show off his own fancy footwork.


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