BIPED (1999, music by Gavin Bryars), to be performed March 13, takes its title from the simulated wire-frame figure created with LifeForms the motion-capture software Cunningham has used to choreograph for more than a decade. Perhaps because of such insider references, his reliance on chance operations, and his allegiance to such creative forces as iconoclast artist Marcel Duchamp and the I Ching, some unfortunately misperceive Cunningham's defined technique as too cerebral, solemnly abstract, or even chaotic. In fact, it's highly organic, structured, and often humorous. Cunningham's dancers fly, balance, point their toes, and change direction on a dime. As he puts it, instead of being something, they are doing something.
[Originally published in March, 2004.]