IT ISN'T EASY being a choreographer in this city. There are few performing spaces, which inflates rents; the transience of the community means unstable audience support; and the proximity of New York soon draws away many dancers.
There are some hardy souls, however, who continue to work away, carving out new performance venues, keeping their dancers together, and banding together to present new work. Five of these artists will be performing at two area churches this weekend.
At the Church of the Epiphany, just across from the Metro Center station, four choreographers -- Theresa Barry, Beth Burkhardt, Elly Porter and Colette Yglesias -- will present "Viewpoints." Among the works to be presented: "In Other Words," Yglesias' brooding quartet to a soundtrack of threatening noises and composer John Cage's musings on the human condition; and D.C. newcomer Theresa Barry's rhythmically challenging, nonstop dance that sends three women whirling as if propelled by a gust of wind. Each piece will be performed in-the-round.
Over at St. James Episcopal Church on Capitol Hill, Diane Hunt and Dancers will concentrate on the solo form. Seven solos, all by Hunt, will be featured. Three of them -- "Reel," "Love Song" and "Lisdoonvarna" -- are set to a traditional Irish score, and another to the magical piano music of Erik Satie. "Woman Hopping" evolves in silence; "Every Silver Cloud" has the dancer speaking, moving forward and backward, and coping with the occasional interruption. Lyricism and sly humor run through many of these works, and Hunt's ensemble is made up of unaffected and winning performers. VIEWPOINTS -- Friday and Saturday at 8, Sunday at 3 p.m., Dance Arts/Moving Arts, 1317 G Street NW. Tickets $7, $6 for students. 737-1662. DIANE HUNT & DANCERS -- Saturday at 8, Sunday at 5, St. James Church, 222 Eighth St. NE. $5. 270-4445.