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Indigenous

 

Luminato Dance: The Canadians 

By Michael Crabb “Tono”, “Skin Divers”, “The Second Person” Sandra Laronde, Red Sky Performance, Dominique Dumais, The National Ballet of Canada, Crystal Pite, Nederlands Dans Theater

For ten days in early June Toronto goes crazy for culture; sort of. That’s when Luminato, the city’s much-vaunted, robustly sponsored “festival of arts and creativity” saturates the scene with a multi-disciplinary cornucopia of offerings aimed at boosting the cultural image of Toronto’s as a “world-class” city.  

 

Resonant and Restless Voices 

By Holly Harris “Sauti” NAfro Dance Productions

Voice – the elusive quality that speaks volumes about subjective artistic experience – took centre stage at The Gas Station Theatre as NAfro Dance Productions opened its fusion-based, African contemporary dance season with “Sauti”. 

 

Indigenous Dancelands 

By Melanie Florence “The Threshing Floor” Kaha:wi Dance Theatre

On the night of the worst snowstorm of the year in Montréal, I trekked through the sleet and wind to a small dance space called Tangente to see the touring performance of Indigenous Dancelands, a program of three works by aboriginal Canadians: Gaétan Gingras performing “Mémoire de sang”; Michelle Olson and Kimberly Tuson (Raven Spirit Dance) in “Songs of Shär Cho”; and Santee Smith and Michael Greyeyes (Kaha:wi Dance Theatre) in “The Threshing Floor”.

 

Reconnections 

By Philip Szporer A mixed progam by Gaétan Gingras  Gaétan Gingras

Iroquois-Mohawk by ancestry, but cut off from his roots for most of his life, at fourteen Gaétan Gingras learned that his maternal grandparents were aboriginal. The truth had been hidden for many years.  

 

Intertwining Difference 

By Janelle Hardy “Uqquaq, The Shelter” Geneviève Pepin, Laurentio Q. Arnatsiaq

After purchasing tickets, we stand in the hot sun in an alleyway outside an abandoned warehouse next to the Boys and Girls Club in downtown Whitehorse. As the first sounds of music snake out from under the closed doors, we are let into the building. Entering a dark cavernous room, our attention focusses on the floor-level stage, set in the round, with a row of chairs on each of four sides.

 

A Ceremonial Event  

By Kaija Pepper “Percy Gladstone Memorial Dance (The Skidegate Project)” Karen Jamieson Dance Company, Dancing on the Edge Festival

The good news from the Edge is that it got off to a great start. Margie Gillis, the opening headliner for the 17th annual Dancing on the Edge Festival of Contemporary Dance, drew excellent houses for both nights of her “Voyages Into the Interior Landscape”. Gillis appeared at the mid-sized, close to 700-seat Vancouver Playhouse, an upscale, downtown theatre, and to see it well filled and bustling made for a festive launch to the ten-day event. 

 

Contemporary Connections: Dance and Nature 

By Gregory C. Beatty Indigenous Dancelands Anthony Dieter, Gaetan Gingras, Byron Chief-Moon, Karen Jamieson, Santee Smith

Presented by New Dance Horizons (Regina), Peterborough New Dance and Tangente (Montréal) under the auspices of CanDance Network, Indigenous Dancelands offered a fascinating amalgam of traditional First Nations and contemporary Western dance practices. Featured was the premiere of Saskatchewan-based filmmaker Anthony Dieter’s Show-Down; Manitowapan by Montréal-based choreographer Gaetan Gingras; Elmer and Coyote, which was co-choreographed by Byron Chief-Moon (Alberta) and Karen Jamieson (British Columbia); and an excerpt from Ontario dance artist Santee Smith’s Kaha-Wi.  

A (re)View of "Quest" 

Quest Byron Chief-Moon, Karen Jamieson

This review was submitted in response to the postings below by Lindsay Zier-Vogel, who is exploring the integration of poetry into her writing about dance. See this author’s response to Zier-Vogel’s writing under the “Of Wishes and Driftwood” link. 

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