2020-21 Community Dance Project with Meredith Thompson

Photo – John Lauener

Community Dance Project Returns

Project Lead: Meredith Thompson

Dance Artist Facilitators: Michael Baboolal, Sully Malaeb Proulx, Noriko Yamamoto

Join Us!

 Last year Toronto-based dance artist, Meredith Thompson, had just begun a community dance project called Imprint for the 2020 Guelph Dance Festival when the pandemic hit. 

After what has been almost a one year pause, both Meredith and Guelph Dance are excited and determined to find a way to carry out this project despite the ongoing pandemic. By shifting our ways of working and exploring what is possible on digital platforms, we have come up with a plan that is safe and adaptable for these ever-changing times. 

A now reimagined Imprint is being presented as part of the Guelph Dance Festival 2021 Season and we are looking for an intergenerational cast of up to 40 movers, ages 8 years and older.

Who is this project for? Anyone from the Guelph area (ages 8 and up) with an artistic or movement practice – and a desire to move their body, connect with others, and be part of a communal artistic experience. 

Meredith and Guelph Dance welcome all bodies to join in this community-based project. We are continuously working to create an environment that promotes and fosters inclusivity, respect, care and kindness, and are committed to making this project available to everyone. If you have any accessibility needs or experience any barriers in accessing any aspects of this project, please contact Meredith by sending an email to: [email protected].

Where will it take place? From the comfort of your own home (via Zoom) – and possibly  outdoors at Exhibition Park (pending both health and safety regulations and weather). 

What is needed to participate? Internet access, a device to connect with, an up todate version of Zoom, and provided we are able to venture out to the park, a well-fitted mask that you are comfortable moving in.

Rehearsal + Filming Schedule

We will begin these rehearsals via Zoom and potentially move outdoors – pending both weather and health and safety guidelines. If we are able to gather outdoors, the process and the choreography will continuously be reimagined to keep everyone appropriately distanced and safe. As a way of sharing the fruits of our collective creative endeavour, the plan is to capture footage of our time together – whether that be recording our Zoom rehearsals or filming our final outdoor rehearsals. * Please note that those interested will need to be available for all rehearsal and filming dates outlined below. 

Saturday, April 3, 1-3pm

Sunday, April 11, 1-3pm

Sunday, April 18, 1-3pm

Sunday, April 25, 1-3pm

Sunday, May 2, 1-3pm

Sunday, May 9, 1-3pm

Sunday, May 16, 1-3pm

Sunday, May 23, 1-3pm

Friday, May 28, 6-8pm

Saturday, May 29, 1-4pm

Sunday, May 30, 1-4pm

Register to participate in full project here Imprint Guelph Community Project

More about the project:

I first created this piece in 2019 with a wonderful cast of folks from in and around Toronto. While it wasn’t that long ago, the world has changed so much since then. That said, the essence of this piece seems more relevant now than it did the first time around …

Day to day, and moment to moment, we exist and live suspended by ten thousand threads of connection and interdependence. Whether we like to think so or not, we don’t accomplish anything in this world alone. Imprint is an acknowledgement of this interconnectivity and the many weavings of our lives.

I’m excited to revisit this work and adapt it not only for these unprecedented times we are living in, but also for a new group of people. I look forward to being ‘together’ in whatever form that takes, and to sharing in a communal engagement. I very much enjoy working closely and thoughtfully with new communities to facilitate a collective artistic experience that is a reflection of the people and the community itself. 

– Meredith

Imprint was first commissioned by Dusk Dances and premiered at Dusk Dances Withrow Park on August 5, 2019.

Meredith Thompson

Originally from Huntsville, Ontario, the traditional territory of the Anishnaabeg, Meredith Thompson (she/her) has long been dancing about and enjoying the physical expression of movement. As a creator and maker, Meredith most often works on projects of the collaborative nature and these projects have been presented at various festivals across the country from coast to coast to (Arctic) coast. She is particularly interested in site-specific work and has been significantly influenced by the experience of facilitating community-based dance projects for large casts of intergenerational movers. As a performer, Meredith has interpreted the works of numerous artists, and performed throughout Canada and beyond for two decades. Fond of teaching and of people of all ages, she has also taught and facilitated dance and movement workshops for a number of arts organizations, school boards, and companies, and continues to do so. Based in Tkaronto, Meredith is a graduate of York University’s Department of Fine Arts and Faculty of Education.

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