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It’s been a busy 2021-2022 season! We asked our amazing staff to share their personal highlights from the last ten months.
The Days was a lovely performance from Finland’s Maria Nurmela and Ville Oinonen, and the choreography felt fresh. Watching the piece with the intimacy of the dancers and other audience members it really made me appreciate live performance and all the work that goes into something that is over so soon. Plus as a bonus – as I’ve been teaching our Power of Dance classes for seniors this year – seeing two local seniors guest in the piece added a whole other level of enjoyment.
My highlight of the year was to have our Power of Dance program back in the schools live Marissa Wong led some wonderful classes at Sir Charles Tupper Secondary School where students new to Canada learned hip hop moves – very heartwarming. I also really enjoyed watching Gladstone Secondary School students perform at Robson Plaza for International Dance Day, showing work created by Damarise Ste Marie that we helped to support.
Linda, Associate Producer
I was interested in MAYDAY’S La Goddam Voie Lactée which we presented in partnership with PuSh International Performing Arts Festival, as I had been listening to Dear Criminals – a band that the singer Annie Holder was in. It was cool to see her and to see performers from Montreal. The performance was very enjoyable and it was nice to see the combination of live music and dance especially with a feminist angle.
Nazanin, Member Services and Outreach
This season really had me awestruck as I saw the artists come back in full form since the pandemic. A standout moment to me this season was Arno Kamolika’s performance as a part of the Discover Dance! series as I really enjoyed watching how the artists matched their expressions to the music and conveyed a story with their movements. Getting to interact with the artists behind the scenes was a great learning opportunity for me as well as I gained insight into how different creative processes can look and how artists overcome the challenges that may come their way.
Simran, Venue Administration
We presented Daina Ashbee’s J’ai pleuré avec les chiens (Time, Creation, Destruction) with the Vancouver International Dance Festival in March, and it was the most challenging and surprising piece I saw this season.
Chris, Visitor Services and Front of House
I remember it was a bit fraught when Idan Cohen, rehearsing Orfeo ed Eurydice in the theatre, had a dancer pop a balloon on stage and it was filled with confetti. Luckily, Idan had his cast help me clean it up – but imagine my surprise at the Vancouver Opera premiere at the Queen Elizabeth Theatre, when the entire cast pulled out confetti-filled balloons and popped thirty all at once!
Chengyan, Lead Technician
This season for the first time we delivered Dance In Vancouver, our biennial dance platform, as a hybrid virtual/in person event – due to the pandemic, the 80+ international presenters who normally attend couldn’t travel here. We used a new digital platform for the presenter program, and the public events happened not just in our building but in different locations around the city. For me it stood out as an opportunity for learning as well as for the spirit of collaboration between curators, artists, partners and staff team, as a new way of embracing engagement and dialogue moving forward.
Having live events again for International Dance Day this year was a great highlight. Seeing the Gladstone students perform at the Vancouver Art Gallery and then experiencing the studio showings in the building sitting with audiences was a great way to celebrate dance. Plus, we were able to still do our micro commissions for the third time which I love – every year they are so unique and really highlight how creative our members are.
We continued to run our residencies and research programs like 12 Minutes Max all through the pandemic, but the public sharings had all been online, so it was great to bring back in-person events this season – there’s something so special about gathering in a space to watch and discuss dance. And I’m very proud of our podcast which launched in September with a focus on highlighting the voices of female and BIPOC artists – every episode is inspiring to listen to.
There is not one single moment that stands out specifically; each is so unique and all are interconnected to me. The whole season has been one loong moment in a somewhat suspended and extended period of time. The very fact that we have survived and come through such a challenging time. And, while the uncertainly and the vulnerability caused by the pandemic continues to be very real, knowing that as a team and as a community we are here, and the ability to harness and assert the joys and uniqueness of live performance, the connectivity that brings us together. That is what motivates me to move ahead with gratitude, knowing we are in this together! Thank you to all!
Mirna, Executive Director
A shout-out to all the wonderful artists and companies who participated in our 2021-2022 season: Artist-in-Residence: Alana Gerecke | Corporeal Imago | Danny Nielsen | Jeanette Kotowich | Kirsten Wicklund | Ralph Escamillan | Tasha Faye Evans | Ziyian Kwan DanceLab: Calle Verde | Restless Productions | VDCM Dance Collective Dance In Vancouver: Action at a Distance + Tangaj Collective | Anouk Froidevaux | The Biting School | Cathy Levy | Charles Koroneho | Christian Vistan | CoERASGA | Company 605 | Daisy Thompson | Dancers of Damelahamid | Dance West Network | Deanna Peters | Dumb Instrument Dance | Elysse Cloma | Future Leisure | Haliehana Stepetin | Jane Gabriels | Jeanette Kotowich | Jessica McMann | Jessica Wadsworth | Joyce Rosario | Justine A. Chambers | Katie Cassady | Kelly McInnes | Kristen Lewis | Lee Su-Feh | Mahaila Patterson O-Brien | MascallDance | P. Megan Andrews | Peter Dickinson | Raven Spirit Dance | Sierra Tasi Baker | Simran Sachar | Tara Cheyenne Friedenberg | Tasha Faye Evans | Yvette Nolan | Zahra Shahab | Ziyian Kwan Discover Dance! series: All Bodies Dance Project | Arno Kamolika | Ne.Sans Opera and Dance | V’ni Dansi’s Louis Riel Métis Dancers Global Dance Connections series: Daina Ashbee | Dumb Instrument Dance | Maria Nurmela & Ville Oinonen | MAYDAY International Dance Day: Alana Gerecke | AMOK Project | Erin Lum | Gladstone Secondary School | Jhoely Triana Flamenco | Kinesis Dance somatheatro | Liat Har Lev | P. Megan Andrews | Sarah U | Shot of Scotch Vancouver | VDCM Dance Collective Open House: Aeriosa | AKS Bison | Company 605 | Danny Nielsen + Shay Kuebler | Dumb Instrument Dance | Kasandra ‘La China’ | OURO Collective | Sujit Vaidya Projects: Livona Ellis and Rebecca Margolick | Mandala Arts & Culture | Matriarchs Uprising Festival | Ne.Sans Opera and Dance 12 Minutes Max: Alexandra Clancy | Ana Sosa/Okams Racer | Eliza Regenyi | Justin Calvadores | Kaia Shukin | Marco Escalante | Sarah U | Sarah Wong Roots of Dance Korzenie tanca: Aleksandra Dziurosz | Jacek Luminski | Jhoely Triana | Lawrence Shapiro | Mateusz Czekaj |Rebecca Fiorito | Rita Findlay| Sebastian Wiertelak
Our 2022-2023 season details are coming soon. Meanwhile please consider supporting our work by making a donation.
Photo credits top to bottom, L to R: Okams Racer/courtesy of the artist; Ziyian Kwan, Justin Calvadores, Sujit Vaidya/TDC; Maria Nurmela and Ville Oinonen/Victor Dmitriev; Virginia Duirenvoorden and Kay Huang Barnes/TDC; Arno Kamolika/Chris Randle; Kelly McInnes/TDC; Gladstone Secondary School/TDC; Ne. Sans Opera and Dance/courtesy of the artist