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Reviews

 

Festival de theatre des Amériques 

By Philip Szporer "100 Rencontres", "In Side" & "Aura" Benoît Lachambre, Par B.L.eux, Stéphane Gladyszewski

“100 Rencontres” by Benoît Lachambre, Par B.L.eux May 25-29, 2005 Société des arts technologies (SAT) “In Side” & “Aura” by Stéphane Gladyszewski May 30-31, June 1-2, 2005 Tangente  

Sita's Journey to Canada 

By Nova Bhattacharya "Sitayana -- Sita's Story" Menaka Thakkar Dance Company

The Menaka Thakkar Dance Company’s presentation of “Sitayana – Sita’s Story” from May 12-15, 2005 at the Betty Oliphant Theatre, Toronto, was a virtuoso production of a dance drama in the bharatanatyam style. 

 

First, A Comedy 

By Kaija Pepper RIFF Tara Cheyenne Friedenberg, Day Helesic

Tara Cheyenne Friedenberg is half man. On her father’s side, going way back. Also, she tells us at the start of “BANGER”, she married a man. Amazing, eh? Who better, then, to explore the contemporary male than Friedenberg?  

 

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 Savvy Program 

By Paula Citron dance Immersion 2005  dance Immersion

Somewhere toward the end of dance Immersion, this writer had an epiphany. No matter how stirring the traditional African drumming and dancing, or how stylish a tap routine, or how attractive the synchronization of energetic b-girls, or how charming the Caribbean folklore, it was the contemporary choreography that gave substance to the evening.  

 

Turning Up the Heat 

By Robin J. Miller ¡BULLA! Hannah Stilwell, Kimberley Cooper, Decidedly Jazz Danceworks

It’s too bad Victoria doesn’t get snow, because it would have been fun to watch it melt under the heat of “¡BULLA!”, the latest full-length show from Calgary’s Decidedly Jazz Danceworks, subtitled “A Loud Cuban Jazz Experiment.” And loud it was. Also raucous and sexy and colourful, and very definitely hot.  

 

A Double Handful 

By Kathleen Smith New Crop of Dancefilms Premiere at FIFA  FIFA (Festival International du Film sur L'Art) 

Montréal’s Festival international du film sur l’art (FIFA) launched its 23rd edition this past March at venues all over town. In addition to profiles of artists, films by artists and documentaries about creative process and art history, FIFA regularly premieres a double handful of dancefilms and docs about dance. This year’s crop was particularly accomplished. 

 

A Quorum of Collaborators 

By Philip Szporer Social Studies/Sciences Sociales  Quorum

The idea for Social Studies/Sciences Sociales surfaced when, back in 2001, Danse-Cité director Daniel Soulières danced with Ziyian Kwan in David Pressault’s work, “Violet”. He came away from that experience with a tenacious desire to unleash a platform for contemporary dancers from Vancouver teamed with choreographers from Montréal. Then he met another terrific, fluent Vancouver dance artist, Susan Elliott. Fellow Vancouverite John Ottmann became the third artist to join the East-meets-West project. (The trio also became known as a new collective, Quorum.)  

 

Vancouver International Dance Festival 2005

By Kaija Pepper Vancouver International Dance Festival Vancouver International Dance Festival

The fifth Vancouver International Dance Festival at the Roundhouse Community Centre took place from March 8-26, 2005 

 

Introspective Expressions 

By Philip Szporer Sa Geste: Sasha Ivanochko and Audrey Lehouillier  Sasha Ivanochko, Audrey Lehouillier

Sasha Ivanochko and Audrey Lehouillier are a study in contrasts. Together on the same bill, they explore the inner lives of women, but also show their differences to good measure. On a triple bill, along with Japanese-based dancer-choreographer Kunie Suzuki, they performed their own solo works at Tangente’s annual celebration of women in dance, SaGeste, a program that coincides with International Women’s Week.  

Mixed Blessings 

By Kathleen Smith Platform 33 in works by Muñoz, Itoh and Bédard  Damian Muñoz, Platform 33, Kim Itoh, Louise Bedard

There hasn’t been a Toronto show in recent memory to spawn as many heated and diverse opinions as the recent Danceworks show featuring commissioned work for a new collective called Platform 33. Audience members on the evening I attended seemed to position themselves all along the spectrum. I love when that happens, because it usually means a chord of some kind has been struck.  

 

Dancers and Gemstones 

By Kathleen Smith CanAsian Dance Festival Program B  CanAsian Dance Festival

Great dancers are like gemstones. Fully experiencing their brilliance can depend on the sensitivity and fit of the setting theyve been given by the choreographer, composer, set designer etc. When everything is up to the standard such artists can inspire, excitement ensues; mess up with the setting and it feels like a crime against art.  

 

Of Loss and Healing 

By Kathleen Smith "Grace" Eryn Dace Trudell

Sometimes, dance is very good at capturing the zeitgeist. Eryn Dace Trudell’s “Grace”, is a memorial to her aunt Grace McDace Barker, who passed away from breast cancer in 2002. It is an overt and intimate treatment of the subject. 

 

Sharing Time 

By Philip Szporer "Lwáza" Zab Maboungou, Compagnie Danse Nyata Nyata

In Lwáza (“chatting” in the language of the Kongo people) dancer-choreographer-philosopher Zab Maboungou has created a terrific piece. It’s a mesmerizing work for three dancers and two musicians that challenges the notion of gesture and the meaning of origin and raises the question of accessibility.

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