When: Fri., May 16, 8 p.m. and Sat., May 17, 8 p.m. 2014
Smuin Ballet will close its twentieth season with verve, presenting two new works that highlight its evolution into a contemporary company of note. Titled XXcentric, the show at Lesher Center for the Arts (1601 Civic Dr., Walnut Creek) is a little eccentric and a lot entertaining, and was well received in its San Francisco debut. Val Caniparoli’s “Tutto Eccetto il Lavandino (everything but the kitchen sink)” is a choreographic free-for-all, right down to the metaphorical sink, while choreographer-in-residence Amy Seiwert’s “But Now I Must Rest” channels the emotion of the late Cape Verdean singer Cesária Évora, whose rich voice conveyed joy and sadness with equal lushness. The show concludes with one act from Michael Smuin’s Dancin’ with Gershwin, a jukebox ballet set to the composer’s greatest hits.