We were shocked and dismayed by the uncharacteristic review of “Dance for Life” written by Laura Molzahn [August 25]. Having read her reviews through the years, this “changeling” review deserves reply both as to content and intent. Ms. Molzahn, as a dance critic and reviewer, has every right and indeed, obligation to review the dance–but her comments about the event itself, “Dance for Life,” were both mean-spirited and out of place.

Since she raises the specter of money, we wonder if that brand of journalism does not have such motives. “Dance for Life” is an act of love for all the dancers involved. We all work free of charge. Yes, we try to raise a lot of money for AIDS causes. Perhaps Ms. Molzahn would see us as more virtuous if we were less successful. (Even in the arts, success is an acceptable goal.)

The assumption that dance is exclusively an “intimate” art is new to us. Anyone who attends a theater that seats in excess of 1,000 people understands that it is not meant to be “intimate.” There are small theaters and there are large theaters. We do not judge apples because they are not oranges. We appreciate both.

As for her remarks about choreographer Elaine McLaurin’s The Murk Groove and her musings about the imagined negotiations between Ms. McLaurin and Hubbard Street Dance Chicago or her absurd comments and idle suppositions about the artistic directors gracing the stage for the raffle drawing, they would have been more fitting in a tabloid than in the Reader.

Your newspaper and Ms. Molzahn have always supported the life and strength of Chicago’s dance community. Let us hope that this commentary in the guise of a review will not see its like again.

Woodie T. White

Harriet Ross

Co-Chairs of Dance for Life