DanceWorks to Present Vancouver's Company 605

DanceWorks, Toronto's longest running contemporary dance series, presents the Toronto premiere of Vital Few, a new work from Vancouver's acclaimed Company 605 that pushes the highly dynamic company into new physical territory. This collaborative undertaking for six dancers, utilizing mechanisms of constant co-dependence and interrelation between the dancers, is on a national tour, stopping in Toronto for one night only - Saturday, May 7 at 8pm - at Harbourfront Centre's Fleck Dance Theatre as part of NextSteps.

Vital Few highlights autonomy and responsibility within a collective consciousness. Based on individual dancers' choice-making within a group dynamic, the six dancers - Laura Avery, Hayden Fong, Josh Martin, Renee Sigouin, Jessica Wilkie, and Sophia Wolfe - share in the creative process, forming a moving sculpture of the group body, the whole greater than the sum of its parts. Directed by Co-Artistic Directors Lisa Gelley and Josh Martin, Vital Few incarnates the struggle of coexistence within set parameters and finite space in this hyper-connected dance.

Vital Few had its world premiere at the Vancouver International Dance Festival in March, then toured throughout British Columbia, followed by three dates in Quebec including Montreal and Quebec City. It heads to Edmonton (May 26-27) and then Ottawa for the Canada Dance Festival (June 9) after its DanceWorks Toronto appearance on May 7.

Vital Few is a co-production of The CanDance Network Creation Fund, Dance Victoria, The Vancouver International Dance Festival, DanceWorks, The Banff Centre, and supported by the Dance Section of the Canada Council for the Arts.

Led by artistic co-directors Lisa Gelley and Josh Martin, Company 605 is a Vancouver-based arts organization dedicated to producing new dance work through a shared creative process. As part of a new generation of creators inspired by the exchange between urban and contemporary forms, 605 places emphasis on movement invention and physically demanding works, valuing collaboration as an essential tool for new directions in dance. The company aims to offer a highly athletic art form derived from the human experience, with each project exploring new paths and creative methods to build powerful and engaging performances. Company 605 has performed works from coast to coast in over 30 cities across Canada, as well as in the US, Central America, and Europe, presented at such notable festivals and venues as: Push International Performing Arts Festival (Vancouver), Usine-C (Montréal), La Rotonde (Québec City), DanceWorks (Toronto), Live Art Dance (Halifax), Festival PRISMA (Panama), The Cultch (Vancouver), The Banff Centre, On The Boards' Northwest New Works Festival (Seattle), Bumbershoot Festival (Seattle), Tempel Kulturzentrum (Karlsruhe, Germany), Yerba Buena Center for the Arts (San Francisco), American Dance Festival (Durham, NC) and New York City Center's Fall for Dance Festival.

Lisa Gelley is a performer, teacher and choreographer in contemporary dance. She received her training in her hometown of Vancouver, Canada and abroad in Belgium, France and Italy. She has performed in works by choreographers including Dana Gingras, Justine Chambers, Amber Funk Barton, Vanessa Goodman, Martha Carter, and was a member of Aeriosa (Julia Taffe) for six years. Gelley was the recipient of the 2015 Vancouver International Dance Festival Choreographic Award.

Josh Martin, originally from Alberta, is a diversely trained dance artist with a career-to-date that has led him across North America and Europe, studying and performing in many genres along the way. As a performer and collaborator, he has worked with many dance companies and independent choreographers such as Amber Funk Barton, Karen Jamieson, Dana Gingras, Wen Wei Wang, and as a past company member of Le Groupe Dance Lab in Ottawa under the direction of Peter Boneham. Martin was the recipient of Vancouver's 2013 Mayor's Arts Award - Emerging Dance Category.

DanceWorks began as a collective of independent dance artists in 1977 and has grown to become Toronto's leading presenter of independent dance. DanceWorks offers seasons of eclectic, exhilarating choreography programmed to intrigue, challenge and enthrall; and adds to the theatrical experience with Carol's Dance Notes and post-performance conversations with artists. DanceWorks is the administrator of the CanDance Network and Dance Ontario Association. +

DanceWorks presents Vancouver's Company 605 with the Toronto premiere of Vital Few Choreographed Company 605, Directed by Lisa Gelley and Josh Martin Saturday May 7, 2016 at 8pm At Harbourfront Centre's Fleck Dance Theatre as part of Next Steps, 207 Queens Quay West, Toronto, ON Tickets: $19 - $37; $15 CultureBreak (under 25); $5 HipTix for students; Discounts for seniors, students and groups. For tickets, call Harbourfront Centre Box Office at 416-973-4000 OR visit online: or

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