All Tharp

With some choreographers, an evening of their work is an essay in sameness, slight variations on a single theme. A program of Twyla Tharp, however, is most definitely a mixed bill. For this year’s All Tharp show, Pacific Northwest Ballet offers a pastoral romp to Brahms, a discordant examination of emotional dysfunction, and a bubbly vaudeville-tinged entertainment. But while these three dances are totally distinct on the surface, they share a wickedly complex approach to structure and an articulate use of ballet vocabulary. There aren’t many choreographers who make you feel smart while you’re laughing out loud—Tharp is one of the few. SANDRA KURTZ

Tue., Oct. 5, 7:30 p.m.; Nov. 6-14, 2010

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