2013 Guelph Dance Festival

In the Park

605 Collective

Vancouver, British Columbia

Audible 2009

Choreographed by The 605 Collective

In Audible (Excerpt), four rambunctious performers meet for a public ritual to unwind and decompress from today’s hyper-communicative world. Their need to find physical connection reveals itself through highly athletic contact sport: jumping, diving and colliding with one another to create a rough-and-tumble dance. Audible addresses the 21st century’s “Attention Age”, where our lives are increasingly connected and consumed by technology and social media. Through 605 Collective’s integration of forms comes a raw and energetic dance that investigates a replacement of social skills, the dislocation from immediate surroundings, and the craving for a very basic human need.

Compagnie Danse Nyata Nyata

Montreal, Quebec

Montreal by Night 2010

Choreographed by Zab Maboungou

Montreal by Night is an urban tale of life and movement where individuals constantly interact and each go their own ways. Extremely refined gestures dispatching multiple planes of energy ravish the stage during a nightly opera at the edge of dawn.Zab Maboungou/ Compagnie Danse Nyata Nyata is a company whose style and movement are engaged and the rhythm generous. They create an energy field out of remarkable gestures that are at once full of force and finely tuned.


Montreal, Quebec

In Mixed Company 2013

Choreographed by David Albert-Toth & Emily Gualtieri

In Mixed Company investigates the tension felt by individuals as they oscillate between the search for meaningful relationships and the pressure exerted by society to conform to its norms. Though radically modern and unprecedentedly connected, our world can still baffle our attempts to be heard, understood and loved, leaving us stranded, alone. In spite of this, we try tirelessly to overcome our isolation and to find the deeply intimate connections that bind us together. Inspired by the works of Theatre of the Absurd playwright Eugene Ionesco and novelist Milan Kundera, this work explores the dissonance that arises within us when social codes hinder ourParajumpers Light Long Bear search.

Ritmo Flamenco

Toronto, Ontario

Sombras de Locura (Shadows of Madness) 2013

Choreographed by Anjelica Scannura

The map of the soul is vast where past, present, and future co-exist. The conscious mind makes sense of the present, but within its vault lies memories buried deep within the unconscious self. It is said that each person’s psyche is split into three. In Sombras de Locura one woman (personified by three dancers) opens her own personal vault of memories in order to embark on her own ‘rite of passage’ from one stage of life to the next. Choreographer Anjelica Scannura was inspired by Stravinsky’s Rite of Spring to set this daring contemporary work.

On the Stage

605 Collective

Vancouver, British Columbia

Co-Production with Animals of Distinction New Animal 2012

Choreographed by Dana Gingras

New Animal is a ferocious Parajumpers Jacket Women work exploiting the supreme versatility of its five dancers. Suffused with raw, unbridled energy, groove, and a hunger for movement, the performers reclaim their animal bodies as a means of becoming fully human. Set to an eclectic soundtrack assembled and manipulated by Roger Tellier-Craig, New Animal walks a tightrope between fleeting moments of control and radical shifts in dynamics. The collective effort to maintain form under pressure requires an acceleration of energy from the feral performers, and a willingness to adapt against imminent disorder.

Dark Circles Contemporary Dance

Dallas, Texas

Jokers in the Deck 2011

Choreographed by Joshua Peugh

Jokers in the Deck provides the audience with a chance to think about fate: whether mankind controls it or not. This work encourages questions Parajumpers Kodiak Jacket on whether fate can be changed, or if humanity simply follows the path destiny has laid out before it.


Montreal, Quebec

Junkyard/Paradise 2010

Choreographed by Mélanie Demers

Junkyard/Paradise exists in a fragile balance Parajumpers Gobi Bomber between beauty and atrocity, between elegance and aversion, between grace and desolation.

While a junkyard is often a shelter for what is still precious and paradise often a dump for our disposable love stories, this piece sways between opposing forces. What can be read as child’s play soon becomes a power game. What is passion becomes compassion. What is inoffensive becomes Parajumpers Jacket Men fatal. And what is imminence of death turns out to be a ticket for life.

Welcome to a world where nothing is exactly what it seems.

Alan Lake

Quebec City, Quebec

Là-bas, le lointain 2012

Choreographed by Alan Lake

Là-bas, le lointain is a work in three acts: a tableau vivant, or living fresco, that marries the body with sculptural elements; a film, or the creative starting point of this project; and a performance, a piece for four dancers. Featuring a community in perpetual motion, coming together and falling apart, a cascade of embraces lost and found. Creatures reflecting on life, death, and memory. A desire for escape to contemplate the beauty of the world and to accept the ephemeral nature of ourParajumpers Gobi Jacket bodies and the obsessive presence of absence.

In the Studio

Tracey Norman

Toronto, Ontario

Witness 2013

Choreographed by Tracey Norman

Observation theory is the driving force behind the creation of Witness, a duet commissioned by JDdance. The work developed out of physical tasks stemming from the “observer effect” and an interest in how we alter our behavior or performance accordingly, based on our cognizance of being watched. There is a corresponding struggle to both overcome and embrace the idea of being viewed by others, and the two women in this work explore both the dark and light aspects of this in their relationship with each other and the viewer. This work had its world premiere in Toronto in April 2013.

Pamela Tzeng

Calgary, Alberta

I do not and I do 2012

Choreographed by Pamela Tzeng

I do not and I do stands as an exploration of identity and relationship through a surrealist lens. Inspiration for this came from the painting ‘Les Amants’ (The Lovers) by Belgian artist Rene Magritte and the poetic wavering words of Pablo Neruda’s Sonnet XLIV.

Entering the disjointed world  of the subconscious, two figures confront the insular struggles and pretences of their relationship. Vulnerability evoked by uncertainty stumbles to the forefront, unveiling the two selves’ questionable and unresolved love.

Local Initiatives

Behind the Scenes of Dance

Heart at Night: David Earle in Guelph Film Screening

In anticipation of the Guelph Dance Festival, we will feature Vaughn Barclay’s documentary Heart at Night: David Earle in Guelph, an intimate portrait of contemporary dance legend, David Earle, one of Canada’s most beloved choreographers and a pioneer in modern dance.This screening will be followed by a short documentary about the Guelph Dance Festival by Michele Ayoub, featuring performance footage and interviews with dance artists from last year’s Guelph Contemporary Dance Festival.We will also invite local dance artists to share personal stories about their creative process.

IMAGEO artworks

Guelph, Ontario

Invisible Hands 2013

Choreographed by Georgia Simms in collaboration with Tanya Williams

Borrowing the metaphor used in political economic theory, Invisible Hands explores the many unseen but influential forces that govern our collective decision-making and actions. The dancers investigate a shift from persistent patterns of conflict and blame to ways of being that can truly hold complexity and foster empathy, understanding, and accountability.

The inspiration for this piece began with ideas of transition, motivated by research conducted by Musagetes through community dialogues hosted in Guelph. An emergent theme in these dialogues was democracy and the shared desire to create thriving systems of participation and co-existence to replace those of exploitation and separation.

Lynette Segal

Guelph, Ontario

Spontaneous Order 2013

Choreographed by Lynette Segal

“Sometimes we blur the distinction between art and life; sometimes we try to clarify it.  We don’t stand on one leg.  We stand on both.”  John Cage

Well, sometimes we stand on one.

A confluence of improvisation and choreography by Lynette Segal, danced by Janet Johnson and Lynette Segal with live music. 

Youth Moves

Carousel Dance Company

Ticking Clocks is about the constant rush of life in an over-stimulated society always running against time.

The Chimera Project’s Company B

Toronto, Ontario

One Against Many 2013

Choreographed by Malgorzata Nowacka

One Against Many is a movement meditation about the origin of behavioural change and the path that the catalyst of this may take.

Contemporary School of Dance

Waterloo, Ontario

Return 2013

Choreographed by Robyn Ellis & Natasha King

Return to Oz is an unofficial Disney film sequel to the much-loved Wizard of Oz, and a more accurate adaptation of the Frank L. Baum books. In contrast to the usually opulent Emerald City, Return to Oz depicts a foray into a ruined empire, highlighted by quirky, discordant characters and an unsettling storyline. Contemporary Dance Theatre and DanceWorks, the performing companies of Contemporary School of Dance, have combined their artistic talents to bring you a glimpse of the subject matter embodied by this cult classic—the ability of dreams to twist the familiar and expose our subconscious fears, precarious adventures that reveal the most obscure aspects of our personalities.

Guelph Youth Dance Company

Guelph, Ontario

In an orderly fashion 2013

Choreographed by Julia Garlisi

This playful and energetic piece of choreography takes place on the playground in a schoolyard. The young children are free to roam, play, and explore given the confines of order and discipline that surround them. This piece follows the youth in their journey to be authentic and original in a controlled environment. They move through the space with such freedom and innocence. As the piece progresses so does their physicality and intensity in the movements. One question remains… How does one have the courage to be an individual while belonging to a group?

no. 369 Collective

Orangeville, Ontario

Once there was a little girl… 2013

Choreographed by Kerri-Ann Hutton & Sarah Felschow

This piece delves into the children’s classic Little Red Riding Hood, with a dark approach to the work. While young friends frolic, a monster lurks in the shadows just waiting to consume each one of them. Little Red must risk a journey through the forest to visit her grandmother and avoid a deadly meeting with the wolf. Who’s afraid of the big bad wolf???

Swansea School of Dance

Toronto, Ontario

The Future Within 2012

Choreographed by Julia Aplin

Young dancers, magicians of movement, alchemists of the truth, listening to the hum of the earth, connecting to the very centre and moving forward. Looking for the future even though we cannot know. All we can do is approach with as much peace, love, harmony, beauty, joy, kindness, courage, strength and wisdom as we possibly muster. The piece is dedicated to Lhasa whose music has inspired the choreographer many times over.

YMI Dancing

Toronto, Ontario

Kids 2011

Choreographed by Kate Franklin

Kids is a fresh, cool dance explosion based around intricate rhythms and fun. The piece features eight dancers clad in brightly coloured jeans doing complex partner work, tight unison, and daring solos to the infectious beats of music by Sleigh Bells and their own clapping. It expresses teenagehood, a zest for life and the laughter that ensues from one another’s company.


Flamenco with Ritmo Flamenco

Anjelica Scannura will be teaching a basic Introduction to Flamenco. You will learn lively footwork, swirling arm and hand movements, and the dynamic hand-clapping you would typically associate with a Flamenco fiesta! A short and very fun choreography will be taught to the accompaniment of Flamenco guitarist Roger Scannura. This is perfect for anyone that wants to try something new and have a great time!

Rhythms and Movement with Zab Maboungou

This workshop focuses on movement, space, and musicality using rhythmic progression and the building of endurance. Zab Maboungou will bring her unique blend of African and contemporary dance styles that has been 25 years in the making. As the founder and Artistic Director of Compagnie Danse Nyata Nyata based in Montreal, she has received international recognition for her deep knowledge of the rhythms and traditions of African dance and her contributions to the landscape of contemporary dance in Canada.

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