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No More Fear

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Director/choreographer/performer Liz Hoefner seems to bring her life to the stage. While this isn't a new or different way of making theater, Ms. Hoefner's life is filled with humorous moments that surround the challenges of being alive in our 21st century.

Performed this past weekend at the Diavolo Dance Space downtown, her new work, Fear of Drowning/Fear of Flying, included a large cast of dancers, actors and musicians. These people loaded the stage with big modern dance movement, anecdotal accounts of private experiences that frightened the speaker and sounds that ranged from electric guitar to voice and small acoustic string instruments. Co-written with another performer, Sarah Leddy and the entire cast, the eighty minute work is colorful and engaging, highlighting our cultural neuroses and playing with them.

The work opens with Leddy and Hoefner finding each other after a short absence. Leddy is carrying sand bags attached to her legs as she struggles to keep grounded and Hoefner is squeezed into a plastic inner tube. She is also wearing swimming goggles so as to avoid possible natural disasters and supplement her urban childhood and its lack of experience in water. In the twenty-three short sections that follow this, we are told about Ms. Hoefner's summer vacations with her partner's family on a Greek island, another performer's close calls on a window ledge, another's discovery of a drowned young person at the bottom of a lake and memories of September 11 from characters who were at the Trade Towers or in New York City that morning.