Features

Fearless Physicality: Athleticism in Toronto’s professional wrestling scene

Grown men in tights that aren’t ballerinos?! Must be the century-old art form of professional wrestling! Its blend of dramatic storytelling and raw athleticism has a unique way of keeping audiences on the edge of their seat. Most of us associate professional wrestling with its 1980s camp, the golden age of Hulk Hogan and André the Giant. But this underground subculture is still going strong, as today’s professional wrestlers mix different performance techniques into their matches. Professional

An Unexpected (But Surprisingly Appropriate) Career Transition: From Dancer to Pro Wrestler

Although the dance world has its fair share of divas, there is a different type of diva that's coming out of the dance studio. "Diva" is the coined term for a female professional wrestler in the World Wrestling Entertainment organization. More than a few dancers—as well as gymnasts and cheerleaders—have taken their training and applied it to successful careers in this comical yet physically grueling art form.

The Red Wall: How Social Media is Changing Commercial Dance in Canada

Excerpt from January/ February 2019 Issue of The Dance Current Magazine: There is a certain magic to the last ten minutes of a dance class. The choreography has been taught and embodied. The stress of learning more choreography is finally removed. The adrenaline of the dancer is pumping, as they are ready to perform and give everything they have for the final minutes of class. Class videos capture these last few minutes, embodying this energy and captivating new viewers to join in on this thrill.

Not A Trend - Krump in Canada

“This is not a trend. I repeat: this is not a trend,” says Lil C in the documentary film Rize, which follows the creation of krump, an urban dance style developed by a group of teenagers in Los Angeles. Lil C was correct. Since krump’s start in the early 2000s, this athletic art form, with its strong sense of culture and community, has grown to gain an international following. Ceasare "Tight Eyez" Willis and Jo'Artis "Mijo" Ratti, widely considered the co-founders of krump, both started dancing through a style termed clowning, in which they performed hip hop moves with their faces painted like circus clowns, and entertained at children’s parties, and public events.

Chronological Order

Review: Impulse 2019 (School of Toronto Dance Theatre)

Student showcase offers a wide variety of dance pieces, now on stage in Toronto The School of Toronto Dance Theatre (STDT) presents IMPULSE 2019 at the Winchester Street Theatre, showcasing work from all three years of their professional training program. Celebrating fifty years of dance education, the modern/contemporary conservatory program produces some of Canada’s top performers. Opening the night is a work from STDT alumni and long-time Toronto Dance Theatre performer, Kate Alton. “Whatever

Review: IN ABSENTIA (JD DANCE / DANCEWORKS)

In Absentia is an imaginative work that sparks childlike wonder A mature fairytale in an absurd universe, IN ABSENTIA presented by JD Dance and Danceworks takes to the Harbourfront Centre Theatre. A fantastic work of dance, puppetry and lots and lots of cardboard. The stage is riddled with cardboard boxes and slabs, over 1000 pounds of it. Boxes of all different sizes are stacked, at some points to the ceiling, into different towers and walls. Many small slabs of ripped cardboard pieces hang a

Review: Spirit (Bangarra Dance Theatre/Canadian Stage/TO LIVE)

Bangarra Dance Theatre, one of Australia’s top dance companies, make their Toronto premiere with Spirit, performing a collection of stories and dances in a celebration of the Aboriginal people and Torres Strait Islander’s traditions. With mesmerizing movement and captivating physicality, the large seventeen member company take to the Bluma Appel Theatre, co-presented by Canadian Stage and TO Live. Dusted in what appears to be white powder or paint, the dancers flock and float around the stage,

Review: The 9th! (ProArteDanza)

The 9th! is a sombre piece, rich with movement and emotion ProArteDanza celebrates its fifteen anniversary with the Toronto Premiere of The 9th!, a take on Beethoven’s most beloved symphony. Presented at Harbourfront Centre’s Fleck Dance Theatre, eight dancers take on this virtuosic contemporary modern choreography. ProArteDanza always does a great job leading audiences of all levels through contemporary dance. In this performance, they provide strong program notes which give great insight int

Review: Minorities (Canadian Stage)

Unapologetically bold and powerfully provocative minorities makes its Canadian debut at Canadian Stage’s Berkeley Street Theatre. Choreographer Yang Zhen questions the personal disconnect of social identity within the new generation of ethnic minorities in China through dance, theatre, and vocals. The space bathes in red. Red painted microphones within red circular hoops, and small red chairs sit at the front of the stage. White mannequins with different traditional garb have red tape covering

Review: Program One (Fall For Dance North)

Dance is both moving and accessible at Fall for Dance North Celebrating five years, Fall For Dance North returns to Toronto at Meridian Hall. Although I was already in love with dance, I’ve fallen head over heels for this festival. Leading dance companies from all over the world are brought to Toronto and made accessible to audiences as all tickets, for any night and any seat, are only fifteen dollars. This review will follow the first of the three thematic mainstage programs presented this we

Review: Program Two (Fall For Dance North)

Energy and variety on stage for Program Two of Fall for Dance North Celebrating five years, Fall For Dance North returns to Toronto at Meridian Hall. With three mainstage programs, this review will follow program two of the festival. Program two features four eclectic works, all of which include live music. Fall For Dance North brings leading dance companies from all over the world to Toronto and makes them accessible to a wide audience as all tickets, for any night and any seat, are only fifte

Review: Program Three (Fall For Dance North)

Program Three of Fall for Dance North rounds out an exciting bill of theatre Celebrating five years, Fall For Dance North returns to Toronto. Program three comes with a scene change, taking place at Ryerson Theatre instead of Meridian Hall. Fall For Dance North brings leading dance companies from all over the world to Toronto and makes them accessible to a wide audience as all tickets, for any night and any seat, are only fifteen dollars. Make sure to read our reviews of program one and program

Review: Toi, La Maladie (YOHURA)

Ren Datura is a self-taught dancer and neo-burlesque artist from Toronto, who narrates the performance through recordings amplified in the space. At times she is audibly joined by french-speaking ex-partner Yohan Durand. However, the recordings mostly express her pain in their break-up. Durand is a self-taught diaboliste, based out of Lyon, France. Both Datura and Durand perform solos to their strengths, as well as a duet, which are interspersed with pieces by guest performers.

Review: Jacqueries Part 2 (Jacob Niedzwiecki)

Immersive theatre meets dance in this piece set in a technological surveillance State Exciting and immersive, Jacqueries Part 2 transforms the Citadel + Compagnie theatre into a stark surveillance state. Mixing technology, dance and audience engagement; coder and choreographer Jacob Niedzwiecki leads the audience through this beautiful yet grim world. Harsh lighting and strict paths made of banker boxes and barrier belts lead you to stern-faced performers. They ask if you are comfortable givin

Des-Echoes (Daniel Bear Davis and Caro Novella) / Fadeout (Anne-Flore de Rochambeau) 2019 SummerWorks Review

Two contemporary works of contrasting themes are brought to the 2019 SummerWorks Stage. One humorous and intimate, while the other is isolating and eerie, Des-Echoes and Fadeout are strong additions to the festival. Starting with only a bar of light highlighting the lower half of her body, choreographer and performer Anne-Flore de Rochambeau, slowly begins to articulate only her hands and fingers in Fadeout. The movement is pained and precise as if to slowly explore the space for the first time

The Nine Brains of the Human Mind / those, on the surface (The School of Toronto Dance Theatre) 2019 SummerWorks Review

Emerging choreographers take the SummerWorks stage with a double bill of modern/contemporary dance. The Nine Brains of the Human Mind and those, on the surface are choreographed by Kari Labrentz and Tanveer Alam and produced/danced by The School of Toronto Dance Theatre. These work-in-process pieces are part of the SummerWorks Lab programming. those, on the surface, choreographed by Kari Labrentz in collaboration with the dancers opens the show, playing with altered identities based on divergin

Review: Dusk Dances 2019 – Celebrating 25 Years (Dusk Dances)

This year the charming outdoor dance festival, Dusk Dances, celebrates 25 Years, featuring five different works in Toronto’s east end. Each piece is spread throughout Withrow Park, using the park’s amenities, like its a baseball field and hockey rink. The 2019 festival includes work from Hanna Kiel, Meredith Thompson, Mix Mix Dance Collective, Denise Fujiwara and Yuichiro Inouo, Pulga Muchochoma & Naishi Wang. Each choreographer creates a ten-minute site-specific piece, mostly staying within a

Review: A Midsummer Night’s Dream (Shakespeare in Action)

Shakespeare in Action presents the Bard’s comedy under the stars, on stage in Toronto Shakespeare in Action presents its first annual ‘Shakespeare in a Shell’ outdoor performance. Bring your own blanket (or maybe even a picnic) to the Little Avenue Memorial Park in Weston and settle in for an energetic, fun and a family-friendly night filled with unrequited love and farcical characters of the classic, A Midsummer Night’s Dream. Although, expect some tastefully added singing and hilarious modern

Fearless Physicality: Athleticism in Toronto’s professional wrestling scene

Grown men in tights that aren’t ballerinos?! Must be the century-old art form of professional wrestling! Its blend of dramatic storytelling and raw athleticism has a unique way of keeping audiences on the edge of their seat. Most of us associate professional wrestling with its 1980s camp, the golden age of Hulk Hogan and André the Giant. But this underground subculture is still going strong, as today’s professional wrestlers mix different performance techniques into their matches. Professional

Review: KIRA, The Path | La Voie (Lua Shayenne Dance Company / Luminato)

KIRA, The Path | La Voie brings a lively and rhythmic energy to the Luminato Festival, with a mix of dancers and percussionist who perform Fara Tolno, choreography and composition. Tolno is a guest artist with the Lua Shayenne Dance Company, specializing in Guinean dance and music. Lua Shayenne, artistic director of the company, took to the Fleck Dance Theatre stage as a performer in the work. The show opens with a line of musicians near the back of the stage, a solo drummer, Tolno begins and i

An Unexpected (But Surprisingly Appropriate) Career Transition: From Dancer to Pro Wrestler

Although the dance world has its fair share of divas, there is a different type of diva that's coming out of the dance studio. "Diva" is the coined term for a female professional wrestler in the World Wrestling Entertainment organization. More than a few dancers—as well as gymnasts and cheerleaders—have taken their training and applied it to successful careers in this comical yet physically grueling art form.

Review: Undivided Colours (inDANCE / Co.ERASGA)

inDance presents solo performances by Asian-Canadian dance artists on stage in Toronto inDANCE and Co.ERASGA present Undivided Colours, four solo works by seasoned Asian-Canadian dance artists. Reflecting, re-imagining, mixing dance styles and stories from their personal heritages and perspectives, the four solos take the Dancemakers Centre For Creation stage. The show begins with William Lau’s Female Warrior Wu – Preparing for Combat. Dressed in blue, pink and red traditional Chinese garb, th

Review: Against Nature (Citadel + Compagnie)

An award-winning adaptation mixing dance and opera returns to Toronto Presented by Citadel + Compagnie, the 2016 Dora nominated Against Nature returns to the Citadel. The opera and dance mix adapts French/Dutch author Joris-Karl Huysman’s 1884 novel À Rebours through the direction and choreography of James Kudelka. After living a luxurious life in Paris, Jean des Esseinte, an aristocrat played by Alexander Dobson, flees to the countryside to live in solitude. In an attempt to escape society, h

Review: Light Years (Canadian Contemporary Dance Theatre)

Canadian Contemporary Dance Theatre (CCDT) presents Light Years at the Harbourfront’s Fleck Dance Theatre, a mixed dance bill showing the technical prowess and maturity of its young company’s members. All under the age of 19, the technically strong and agile dancers perform five works – two world premieres, two CCDT premieres and one returning piece. The show opens with Alien Grace, choreographed by the artistic director of the company Deborah Lundmark. The main company members are dressed in s
Load More Articles
Close