DanceWorks to Open Season with New Work by Heidi Strauss, 9/25-27
DanceWorks, Toronto's longest running contemporary dance series, presents the world premiere of elsewhere, an adelheid dance projects production choreographed by its award-winning Artistic Director, Heidi Strauss. This highly anticipated work launches DanceWorks' 2014-15 season and runs September 25-27 at Harbourfront Centre Theatre as part of Harbourfront Centre's NextSteps.
The newest work by acclaimed choreographer Heidi Strauss, elsewhere takes inspiration from the anthropological concept of 'affect' - our human capacity to affect, or be affected. The choreography maps a condition that gives everyday life a quality of continual motion, felt within impulses, expectations and encounters; an internal graph of lived intensities. A kinetic meditation, elsewhere bears witness to our resilience, posing moments of tenderness, force, and surrender as what bears witness to our resilience.
Performed by five remarkable dancers - Danielle Baskerville, Miriah Brennan, Luke Garwood, Molly Johnson and Brendan Wyatt - who lend a vivid intimacy to the work which is the company's first independent creation for an ensemble, also bringing together talented designers Jeremy Mimnagh (sound & projection), Rebecca Picherack (lighting) and Teresa Przybylski (set & costume).
adelheid will also partner with Grimm Pictures to create a series of short films based on elsewhere, co-created by Grimm's Laura Taler, adelheid's Artistic Associate Jeremy Mimnagh and Strauss. These will be screened in public contexts where dance is not usually seen in Toronto, including Pattison Onestop subway platforms, shopping malls, underground walkways and high-rise elevators. The films will move elsewhere into the realm of public art.
Five years in the making, elsewhere has been supported by partnerships across Canada forged in the earliest stages of research and development, including residencies at the Theatre Centre (Toronto), Public Energy (Peterborough) and Dance Victoria (Victoria, B.C.). After its Toronto premiere, elsewhere will be presented at Public Energy (Oct. 10), Oakville Centre for the Performing Arts (Oakville, Oct. 8) and Danse Cité (Montreal, Oct. 1-4). The presenting partnerships that follow the premiere represent a commitment rare in the culture of contemporary dance, where the life of a choreographic work is so often transient.
Heidi Strauss is a resident artist at the Theatre Centre. She was artist-in-residence at Factory Theatre from 2008 to 2012, during which she created as it is, the Dora Award-winning this time, and still here. Her most recent work, Everyday Anthems, commissioned by Christopher House for the ensemble of the Toronto Dance Theatre, was presented at Harbourfront Centre's World Stage and hailed as "a triumph" by the Globe and Mail. With a keen interest in the development of the dance form, Strauss was co-artistic director of hub14 for nearly four years, implementing and facilitating new residency possibilities for research and creation, as well as performance platforms. She supports the process of other creators as an outside eye, teaches regularly in Toronto and Montreal, and has worked in theatre (Volcano, Necessary Angel), opera (Canadian Opera Company, Frankfurt Oper) and film (Mimnagh, Grimm Pictures), and as a performer (recently: Ginette Laurin, Yvonne Coutts, Sylvain Emard, Jenn Goodwin). Strauss is the recipient of the 2012 KM Hunter Award for Dance, and last year was named Toronto's best choreographer by NOW magazine's readership. adelheid dance projects formed in 2008 after a series of collaborations between Heidi Strauss and Jeremy Mimnagh. The two run adelheid together, with Strauss as Artistic Director and Mimnagh as Artistic Associate.
DanceWorks began as a collective of independent dance artists in 1977 and has grown to become Toronto's leading presenter of independent dance. Strong in the belief that dance has the power to illuminate, engage and transform all who participate, DanceWorks offers seasons of eclectic, exhilarating choreography programmed to intrigue, challenge and enthral. DanceWorks adds to the theatrical experience with danceflics, Carol's Dance Notes and post-performance conversations with artists. DanceWorks is the administrator of the CanDance Network and Dance Ontario Association.