Music: Terrible Town

When Sherwood Anderson wrote Winesburg, Ohio, he was trying, he said, to convey "a new looseness [ of ] lives flowing past each other.'' His stereopticon smalltown grotesques were translated with difficulty to me legitimate stage. But last week at the Jacob's Pillow (Mass.) Dance Festival, they took on vivid new life in a fresh medium: a "dance drama" based on the book and choreographed by 38-year-old Donald Saddler, who arranged the dances in Broadway's Wonderful Town.

For his dance version of Winesburg, Saddler focused on four of the book's most luridly contorted figures:...

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