The critics have long been divided when it comes to Brian Brooks' dance works. They've praised the challenging demands of his technique (which we'll see in the perpetual motion duet from Motor), his sometimes-whimsical approach to subject matter (including corporate America in I'm Going to Explode) and his obsession with striking visuals and unconventional props and set design (in the air dance sequences of Descent). They've also repeatedly critiqued overly weening incremental changes in works that test the endurance of dancers and audience without a lot of development.
The love/ hate relationship continues with Brooks' latest work, Big City, which premiered in California in April prior to a New York showing last month. The New York Times panned it, while a more sympathetic take in offoffoff.com still criticized its "overgrounded, possibly overthought choreography." American Dance Festival audiences will decide for themselves when the company performs this quartet of new and repertory works Monday and Tuesday at 8 p.m. —Byron Woods