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- digital programme -

SpringSong 2024

Young Cardinals (2023)

Choreography: Megan Nadain (with the dancers)

Music: The Cinematic Orchesta & The London Metropolitan Orchestra, Hauschka, Lele Marchitelli

Dancers: Young Apprentices

 

A dance of hope, found family and connections. And just like with cardinals which I now see all over, these things can be found all around us when we take the time to look.

Memory Container (2023)

Choreography: Ryan Lee

Music: Paddy Mulcahy

Dancers: Core Apprentices

 

Thanks to Dana MacDonald for her contributions.

Les Petits Monstres (2023)

Choreography: Jane-Alison McKinney

Music: Henrik Schwarz & Bugge Wesseltoft - DUOII

Dancers: Young Apprentices

A serious dance for serious people... but in all seriousness, it's about the power of being yourself.

go tell fire (2015)

Choreography: Nicole Nigro

Music: Heather McIntosh & Peter Jack Rainbird

Dancers: Core Apprentices (with Avielle Cole-Kim and Serena McGinley)

“It doesn’t happen all at once,” said the Skin Horse. “You become. It takes a long time. That’s why it doesn’t happen often to people who break easily, or have sharp edges, or who have to be carefully kept. Generally, by the time you are Real, most of your hair has been loved off, and your eyes drop out and you get loose in the joints and very shabby. But these things don’t matter at all because once you are Real you can’t be ugly, except to people who don’t understand.” —Margery Williams, The Velveteen Rabbit

~intermission~

Of Being Us (2023)

Choreography: Megan Nadain (in collaboration with the dancers)

Music: The King's Singers (U2), Das Mörtal, New Order

Dancers: Core Apprentices

 

Examining, sharing and celebrating the quirks and oddities of growing up and being us. Living in the joy of the uncomfortable; the beauty of the awkward. And finding connection in the togetherness and inevitability of it all.

"This is happening. I am here... I can see it. You are alive. And you stand up and see the lights on the buildings and everything that makes you wonder. And you’re listening to that song, and that drive with the people who you love most in this world. And in this moment, I swear, we are infinite.” ― Stephen Chbosky, The Perks of Being a Wallflower

Deep Blue (Premiere)

Choreography: Jane-Alison McKinney

Dancers: The Young Apprentices

Music: Raphael Roter

Thank you to the dancers for their personal creative contributions, and the generous vulnerability and expression they have shared within this work.

EverEnd (Premiere)

Choreography: Megan Nadain

Music: Dustin O’Halloran (with remix by Aminolen)

Dancers: Core Apprentices

 

While we set out to investigate the many meanings of an ending, we ended up landing in a whole world of beginnings. Heavily informed by some of the books I was reading during the creation period about the multiverse (including ‘Dark Matter’ by Blake Crouch & ‘The Midnight Library’ by Matt Haig), we found ourselves exploring different possibilities within relationships between each other, the space and time. As dance legend David Earle says, “If you change anything, you change everything.” Despite the potentially overwhelming nature of the endless possibilities, it has encouraged us toward a feeling of gratitude to be where we are right now, in this timeline, with these people, dancing together, for you.

SpringSong

Artist Biographies

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Deborah Lundmark

Co-Founder, Artistic Director & Resident Choreographer

Deborah Lundmark has created more than 40 works for her company. These include collaborations with the Danny Grossman Dance Company, the Toronto Children's Chorus and Toronto Symphony Youth Orchestra and blues artists Thompson Egbo-Egbo and Jerome Godboo. From her Street Songs (1980) to Dancing Day (1989), Precipice (2010) and Alien Grace (2018), Ms. Lundmark has impressed audiences and critics alike with the power, precision and artistry of her unique company. She has commissioned over one hundred works from a who’s who of Canadian choreographers including David Earle, Carol Anderson, Tedd Robinson, Santee Smith and Ofilio Sinbadinho and from abroad, Colin Connor, Sidra Bell, Kevin Wynn (USA) and Alexander Whitley (UK). Her company has won Toronto Arts Foundation’s prestigious Arts for Youth Award and has been critically acclaimed as "a national treasure" numbered "among the ranks of Toronto’s top dance companies" by The Globe and Mail. Her dancers have gone on to perform with many of the world’s leading companies including the José Limón Dance Company whose recent 70th anniversary CCDT helped to celebrate with performances of José Limón’s The Winged at New York City's Joyce Theater.

Photo by Gary Ray Rush

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Michael deConinck Smith

Co-Founder & Managing Director

Michael deConinck Smith has directed the staging of over three hundred CCDT productions including five appearances at the Canada Dance Festival. In 1988 he conceived and produced CCDT’s acclaimed collaboration with the Toronto Boys Choir and the Hanson Singers, the original WINTERSONG – dances for a sacred season, now a three-decade-old tradition. In 1990, Michael led CCDT’s first international tour to the People’s Republic of China, and the following year the premiere of SONGS of INNOCENCE and of EXPERIENCE, featuring commissions by ten leading choreographers, realized one of his long-cherished dreams. From 1997 to 2000 he planned CCDT’s extensive tours of Northern Ontario, and in 2002 led the company’s return to Southeast Asia with performances in Singapore, Kuala Lumpur and Johor Bahru, Malaysia. In 1994, Michael oversaw the purchase and renovation of CCDT’s 509 DANCE studios, now an intergenerational crossroads for Canadian dance. For fifteen years Michael has led his company’s Ontario Community Residencies Program introducing more than 300,000 young people to contemporary dance in theatres throughout Ontario. Most recently, he produced CCDT’s Scotland tour to the Commonwealth Youth Dance Festival followed by the company’s inaugural appearances at the storied Joyce Theater in New York City as part of the José Limón Dance Company’s International Dance Festival in celebration of their 70th Anniversary.

Photo by Gary Ray Rush

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Megan Nadain

Core Apprentice Director & Choreographer

Megan Nadain (she/her) is a Toronto-based dancer, choreographer and dance educator originally from North Vancouver, BC. She is a graduate of The School of Toronto Dance Theatre where she the recipient of the The Hnatyshyn Foundation Developing Artist Grant. She is a company member with Dancetheatre David Earle and has worked independently with Darryl Tracy, Nicole Nigro, inDANCE, Toronto Heritage Dance and Miranda Abbott.


She has the pleasure of being on faculty at The School of Canadian Contemporary Dance Theatre and directing CCDT’s Core Apprentice Program. She is also a faculty member at The School of Toronto Dance Theatre teaching in The Professional Program and The General School. She has also taugth at The National Ballet of Canada InStuio program, York University and facilitates the dance programs at several secondary schools in Toronto. Two projects that she has been involved with recently and that she is exceptionally passionate about are Bridging Generations Through Dance with Dancing with Parkinson’s and Moving together: Choreographic mappings of children with diverse dis/abilities and their neurological responses to a dance-play event with Coralee McLaren.

Photo by Dancetheatre David Earle

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Jane-Alison McKinney

Young Apprentice Director & Choreographer

Jane-Alison McKinney, originally from New Brunswick, is a dancer, choreographer, producer, and teacher. A graduate of The School of Toronto Dance Theatre, she has performed the works of a variety of contemporary dance artists in Canada and Internationally. In 2016, she was awarded a Metcalf Foundation Internship Grant in Artistic Direction with adelheid under the mentorship of Heidi Strauss, whose close mentorship has played a profound impact on Jane-Alison’s artistic development. She has also worked with adelheid as a dancer, emerging choreographer, and producer. Jane Alison’s choreography has been supported nationally by a variety of festivals and residencies; most recently her solo work ‘There she was’ was presented by Tangente in Montreal. Jane-Alison has also taught classes and workshops across Canada for organizations such as The School of Toronto Dance Theatre, the Good Women Dance Collective, Jamii, Quinte Ballet School, and the National Ballet of Canada (amongst others). She continues to be inspired by the remarkable artists she works with as Director of the Young Apprentice Program at CCDT.

Photo Courtney Gallery

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Nicole Nigro

Choreographer

Nicole Nigro is an international dance|theatre artist. Nigro is a graduate of The School of Toronto Dance Theatre (CA), holds an Honours BFA from York University (CA), a Diploma in Dance Teaching Studies with The Royal Academy of Dance (UK), and an MFA with Accademia dell’Arte (IT) and Mississippi University for Women (US). She has had the privilege of interpreting as a guest artist with Anandam Dancetheatre, Broken Jump Theatre, The Danny Grossman Dance Company, Divadlo Continuo, Dance Theatre David Earle, Peggy Baker Dance Projects for Nuit Blanche, Die Wolke Art Group, Diyar Dance Theatre and several independent choreographers. Her work has been presented in Canada, the United States, Europe, Mexico and the Middle East. She was a longtime faculty member at The School of Toronto Dance Theatre’s General School and Canadian Contemporary Dance Theatre (CCDT), as well as the Artistic Director of CCDT’s Core Apprentice Company. Nigro is a member of Canadian Alliance of Dance Artists and the Dancer Transition Resource Centre. She has been a residency artist at Ponderosa (DE); Artscape (CA); Earthdance (US); La Macina di San Cresci (IT); Kulturfactory (IT); and Švestkovy Dvur (CZ). In June of 2016, Nigro relocated to Europe to pursue an MFA in Physical Theatre at Accademia dell'Arte. The 2.5-year graduate program took place in Italy, Germany, and the Czech Republic. 

Photo by Faith Sullivan 

Canadian Contemporary Dance Theatre presents

SpringSong

2023/2024 Season

 

CCDT and the School of CCDT Founders & Directors

Deborah Lundmark & Michael deConinck Smith

Director, Core Apprentice Program

Megan Nadain

 

Director, Young Apprentice Program

Jane-Alison McKinney

Core Apprentice Dancers

Melina Christopoulos, Maya Greenwood, Violet Harris, Olivia Langley, Alexis Perritt, Eve Pittendreigh, Nayanne Rayner, Maxine Robert, Kyra Simm-Smith, Alice Whyte-Lewis

Young Apprentice Dancers

Avielle Cole-Kim, Petra de Villiers, Adele Hawke, B Lee, Kate Li, Serena McGinley, Annabeth Seedhouse, Freya Von Hahn, Catherine Wang

 

Production Stage Manager

AJ Morra

Lighting Design

Emerson Kafarowski

Apprentice Program Accompanists

Raphael Roter, Stich Wynston

 

Manager, School of CCDT

Kathryn Fallowfield

 

Director, Marketing & Outreach

Natasha Jorge-Moore

Thank you

Canadian Contemporary Dance Theatre is profoundly grateful for the generous support from the friends and family of our aspiring artists. It is thanks to donations from people like you that we are able to foster artistic growth within these young dancers, both in the studio and live onstage. 

Thank you to our CCDT Board of Directors

Philip Akin, Vice-President/Vice Chairperson

Tom Sheppard, Secretary/Treasurer

Paula Prociuk Blacklock, Officer

Gerry Maddison, Officer Emeritus

and a special thank you to our individual contributors

Ashley & Mark Dela Cruz
Laura Ziemba & Kevin Lee
Erin & Jason Vandenberg
Maria Christopoulos
Anne-Sophie Ramette & Thomas Robert
Anna Manuel
Karen & Jeffrey Seedhouse
Angela Cole-Kim
Susanna Chwang & Kevin Harris
Sarah Jane Burton
Emilie & Jim McGinley

Ananda More & Jose Salamo

Tae Hee Kim & James Perritt

Farah Ali & Cale Pittendreigh

Kaija Vogel & Vassilios Alexiou

Rubina Khan

Thomas Tyson

Michael Bellissimo & Christine LeBlanc

Sharon Whyte & Andrew Lewis

Coralee McLaren

Jennifer Rayner

Julie Yip

Sonya Teece & Andy Soter

Marsha Josephs-Britton & Leslie Britton

Freya & Cecil von Hahn

Jackie Huang & Jia Hao Wang

Nancy Tsanos

Lara & Thomas Christoff

Rosemary Li-Houpt & Simon Houpt

Zahra Karimi

Judith Prince

Lisa Mendelson

Helen Kula & Michael Dolenko

Naakai Garnette & Tai Simm-Smith

Linda Van Den Brink & Etienne De Villiers

Ying Xu

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