Nora Chipaumire cuts a stunning figure when she's doing her thing. The statuesque Zimbabwean dancer/choreographer and featured performer with the groundbreaking Urban Bush Women troupe thrashes, undulates, and slinks across the stage in engrossing and endlessly gorgeous manifestations of the walking wounded. But her new work, Chimurenga, isn't just intense movement-as-metaphor. It's a 70-minute projectile of potent dance, paired with multimedia expressing Chipaumire's transnational identity. Joined by musician Alex Potts, who blends sounds into an entrancing tribal-techno fusion, Chipaumire's work is based on the collective devastation of war -- in this case, Zimbabwe's second war of liberation, Chimurenga Chechipiri (1965-1980). In ferreting out the calamitous relationships between rural and urban, African and non-African, ancient and modern, Chipaumire avoids merely presenting viewers with a cathartic spectacle. While news of Africa remains little more than a dispiriting blip on the garbled collage of the American conscience, Chipaumire's work is important precisely because it hacks away at the imaginary borders that separate us. And as confrontational as the work is, she tunnels into a trauma that connects us all.
Sept. 7-8, 8 p.m.