Teal Sherer glides across the dance floor with a smooth perfection beyond the grasp of the finest foot-bound ballerina. With outstretched arms, she turns exquisite circles around her various partners. She spins with all limbs liberated from the Earth.
Full Radius Dance, a company whose members include dancers who use wheelchairs, has a way of redefining "disability." The company was founded in 1998 by Douglas Scott and Ardath Prendergast when they integrated two nominally distinct companies that were both directed by Scott. Dance Force was an experimental company using traditional dancers. E=motion expressed the same artistic impulses using disabled dancers. "They were doing the exact same kind of work, just different dancers," says Scott.
In 10 Things We Do In The Dark, opening June 28, Scott turns the talents of his integrated group to an evening of motions and emotions related to the dark. At turns sensual, serene and slumber-party silly, the production features 10 separate dance pieces that contain movements inaccessible to traditional companies. In "Spelunking," Prendergast squeezes her body through the claustrophobic undercarriages of three wheelchairs. Margo Gathright-Dietrich and Scott create an erotic sculpture in motion atop a scooter in "Make Love." The mighty Tommy Gates "flies" Prendergast across the stage, her face suspended a breathless inch above the floor.
The company is equal parts dance and daredevil, perhaps determined to answer every "You can't" with a "Watch this!" Says Prendergast, "There's nothing we won't try. There's nothing we can't do." That audacious spirit makes for a thrilling ride.
Full Radius Dance presents 10 Things We Do In The Dark at 7 Stages, 1105 Euclid Ave. June 28 at 8 p.m. and June 29 at 3 and 8 p.m. 404-724-9663. www.fullradiusdance.org.