Extreme sports meets dance when the members of Diavolo leap, fly and spin on a variety of contraptions to create imaginative, innovative and athletically challenging works. The members of Diavolo are masters of timing and teamwork. This group will leave audience members at the edge of their seats when they perform at the WVU Creative Arts Center Sunday, Oct. 9 at 7:30 p.m.

Everyday items such as doors, chairs and stairways provide the backdrop for the dramatic movement of the Diavolo dance team as they flip, dive and twirl to create metaphors for the challenges and struggles of relationships, life and humanity. Under the guidance of artistic director and founder Jacques Heim, this group was nominated for multiple Lester Horton awards and was namedBest of the Festby the London Independent and Critics Choice by the Guardian at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival.

Jacques Heim founded Diavolo Dance Theater in 1992 and was the recipient of the Special Prize of the Jury at the Saitama International Dance Festival in Japan that same year. He has been named one of theFaces to Watch in the Artsby the Los Angeles Times and one of the100 Coolest People in L.A.by Buzz Magazine . Heims innovative way of working with architectural structures inspired Cirque du Soleil to hire him to choreograph their newest permanent Las Vegas show,Ka,which opened in February.

In 1998, the company opened the performance series at the new Getty Center Museum in Los Angeles and also created its first full evening length work which was commissioned by the National Dance Project and nearly a dozen prominent performing art centers around the country. The 1998-1999 season marked Diavolos first full North American tour. The company has performed in over 30 states and also in countries such as Japan, Mexico and Chile.

Heim says his artistic vision is tocapture and comment upon the ironic and frequently humorous patterns, as well as the darker consequences, of human behavior.He tries to break down the barriers of dance by incorporating serious risk taking and dramatic movements along with adaptations of everyday items into his productions.

The movements Heim works with are derived from observations of normal pedestrian behavior. Although Diavolo is very theatrical, Heim believes that the familiarity of the movements enables audiences to perceive the themes of the various dance pieces despite some of its more abstract content.

With 10 members in the company, Diavolo has over a dozen works in repertoire and has attracted the criticsattention from the very beginning. The Los Angeles Times said that Diavoloestablishes [Heim] as a creative force in the community, someone with both a compelling vision and the ability to inspire others.

Family audiences will be wide-eyed with wonder as they witness fearless daredevils who fly into the air, plunge off huge movable sets and fling themselves across the stage into one anothers arms. Much like last seasonsCirque Dreamsshow, Diavolo transports audiences into an unexplored realm of imagination.

Tickets are $30 and may be purchased at the Mountainlair and Creative Arts Center box offices, online at ticketmaster.com or at any Ticketmaster outlet (including Giant Eagle in the Mountaineer Mall) or by phone at 293-SHOW (7469) or 292-0220.

The University Art Series is produced by WVU Arts&Entertainment. For more event information, call 304-293-SHOW, or visit us online at events.wvu.edu.