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Reviews

 

Defying the Familiar

dance: made in canada’s Mrozewski Series By Valeria Nunziato

The Mrozewski series at this year’s dance: made in canada festival defy the familiar with Katia-Marie Germain’s Habiter and Josh Martin’s Leftovers.

 

Blending In, Blending Out

Syreeta Hector’s Black Ballerina By Valeria Nunziato

Syreeta Hector’s Black Ballerina bears a loaded title, with an equally weighty repertoire of choreography. At SummerWorks Performance Festival, we were offered a preview of this work-in-progress, her first-solo work, with the full program premiering at The Citadel this fall.

 

That Sweet Spot Between Gallery and Stage

Alexa Mardon and Erika Mitsuhashi’s Tender Engine By Rachel Silver Maddock

Across four evenings this June, VIVO presented Tender Engine, a performance-installation piece co-choreographed by Alexa Mardon and Erika Mitsuhashi. The artists have been in research for over a year through residencies in Vancouver and Halifax, during which they investigated four areas: technology, language, storytelling and “performative expertise.”

 

An Electric Bolt of Messy

Helen Simard’s Requiem Pop By Philip Szporer

Helen Simard explores the life and work of music icon Iggy Pop in her newest creation called Requiem Pop, which tackles the notions of hero worship, fandom and the cultural icons we don’t know but love. The work unleashes an electric bolt of messy, self-destructive Iggy chaos onto the stage.

 

Gogol’s Glitch

Kidd Pivot’s Revisor By Philip Szporer

The co-creators of the bold and distinctive Revisor, Jonathon Young and Crystal Pite, bear witness to themes of deceit, tyranny, greed and corruption in their re-telling of Nikolas Gogol’s The Inspector General.

 

Skin, Pain, Plastic and Paper

Kelly McInnes’s SHINY at the Vancouver International Dance Festival By Rachel Silver Maddock

Just how deep does the damage go? In SHINY Kelly McInnes gets to the guts of this question in a persistent and stealthy topic: the effects of the beauty standards inflicted on women through media.

 

Alien Rituals

10 Gates Dancing’s TRUST at the Vancouver International Dance Festival By Rachel Silver Maddock

The program describes the duet as a “requiem for wood and stone” – a “primitive mystery of vulnerability and transformation.” With or without these descriptions, the setup places us immediately inside some kind of ritual or spiritual journey, though its parameters and significance are unclear.

 

Renaissance, Ritual and Passion

Toronto Dance Theatre’s Persefony Songs By Collette Murray

An inquisitive storyline begins as a pomegranate flips through the air. In response, the ensemble rises to engage in a syncopated choreographic trail.

 

Lonely Elegy

Akram Khan’s XENOS By Philip Szporer

To appreciate Akram Khan, the exalted British dance artist, is to see his fierce spins, angled gestures, intricate patterns and the sublime articulation of hands, fingers and feet. But it also means seeing his moments of soft repose, which give pause.

 

In the Cypher

Three street-to-stage performances in Montréal By Helen Simard

2019 might be the year that the Montréal stage dance community finally catches on to what’s going on in our city’s street dance scene.

 

Phosphorescent Figures Rattle

Priscilla Guy and Sébastien Provencher’s Deux squelettes By Philip Szporer

Guy and Provencher’s characters are, in their work Deux squelettes, two artists who’ve shed, well, everything to probe the meaning of their existence.

 

Stepping into the Twilight of the Sacred

Canada’s Royal Winnipeg Ballet presents Vespers at the National Arts Centre By Sheenagh Pietrobruno

James Kudelka transforms the religious evocation of this 1610 choral masterpiece into a contemporary spiritual testament to the union between animals, humans and nature.

 

Navigating the Voyage

Lucie Grégoire’s Territoires By Philip Szporer

In many ways Lucie Grégoire’s new work, Territoires, is like an elusive secret. She notes that this piece is drawn from previous works and new material – a revisiting of her creative bank of work.

 

Turn Me Inside Out

Rock Bottom Movement’s fantasylover brandishes a feminist awareness with a self-aware wink By Jillian Groening

fantasylover layers pop culture references and vibrant subversion of fairy tale tropes to create a feminist utopia.

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