Urban Jazz Dance

When: Fridays, Saturdays, 8 p.m. Continues through Aug. 27 2011

Like any contemporary dance artist, Oakland's Antoine Hunter loves to blend ballet, modern, hip-hop, and even African styles into unique new movement. Unlike most, he also includes American Sign Language -- born deaf, the accomplished dancer and choreographer incorporates signing into lyrical, high-energy pieces that his company, Urban Jazz Dance, performs Friday and Saturday, Aug. 19-20 and 26-27, at Shawl-AndersonDanceCenter (2704 Alcatraz Ave., Berkeley). Urban Jazz comprises deaf, hearing, professional, and nonprofessional dancers who share Hunter's belief that anyone can reach their dreams -- a message that will be powerfully clear, even to audience members who don't sign. On the second weekend, the company is joined by Fred Beam & the Wild Zappers, a nationally recognized all-deaf male dance company. Advance tickets are highly recommended. 8 p.m., $15-$35. 510-654-5921 or

Claudia Bauer

Price: $15-$35

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