OCTOBER 25

Founded in 1972, the Muntu Dance Theatre of Chicago specializes in traditional West African dance. Thanks, however, to artistic director Aminiyea Payne, who has worked with Cab Calloway, Stevie Wonder, and Rita Marley as well as African dancers, and a company that includes performers born in Jamaica and the United States as well as West Africa, Muntu productions offer both time-honored and contemporary perspectives. Tonight’s program, while including more stagey works, such as the Senegalese ballet excerpt Kotebah, will stress classic folkloric efforts such as Lamban, a rite of passage regularly danced by griots, Econne Econne, a dance identified with Senegalese rice field workers, and Fangama, a Guinean war dance. Whether or not one can identify with such themes, this 17-member company’s flamboyantly athletic jumping, kicking, and spinning, as well as its accompanying polyrhythms, should prove stimulating. At 8 p.m. at the Publick Playhouse, 5445 Landover Rd., Cheverly. $15. For reservations call (301) 277-1710. (Steve Kiviat)