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A message from Artistic Director Deborah Lundmark

What joy I have experienced in the company of such a delightful group of dancers this season!  These thirteen young artists auditioned in the spring of 2021 after spending a year, mostly alone, doing pliés in their bedrooms. Such courage it must have taken, still in the midst of a pandemic lockdown, to refuse to surrender their passion for dance and to record that video for their CCDT audition.


And then I look to a gifted and generous group of rehearsal directors, Ryan, Sierra, and Sasha, who leapt into the fray in support of Natasha who, after years of nurturing the company, began once more to explore her own passion for performing. But, if you know anything of Natasha, she could never bring herself to entirely leave the company she grew up in and she returned to share with Sierra, Sasha and Ryan the endless intricate challenges of bringing VERGE to the stage for you this evening.

And what more to say of our four inspiring choreographers, Jennifer, Charlotte, Roderick and Colin than that they have beautifully illustrated their love of engaging, as artistic peers, with an ensemble of aspiring young dancers.  The results speak for themselves with two blazingly physical premieres (Charlotte’s first and Jennifer’s third) and remounts of two company classics (Roderick’s second and Colin’s sixth).

My own premiere, completed as I struggled with Covid myself, also marks the recent passing of my father. I was so fortunate to be sustained during its creation by a trio of generous young men, mature beyond their years, each offering their own unique inspiration to my choreography.

And to help navigate this emotionally charged process, I turned to Thompson, my composer, and his band, for our second collaboration, partly from my long-time comfort with jazz but mostly seeking a return to the warmly improvised feel of Thompson’s compositions and their understated musical embrace.

Finally, our heart-felt appreciation to each of you here tonight for playing your own individual, essential role in bringing our stages back to life and welcoming us back in from the cold.


Land Acknowledgement

We are grateful for all of our dancing spaces, and would like to acknowledge that the traditional territory named Tkarón:to is in the ‘Dish With One Spoon Territory’. The Dish With One Spoon is a treaty between the Anishinaabe, the Mississaugas, and the Haudenosaunee that bound them to share the territory and protect the land. Subsequent Indigenous Peoples, Europeans and all newcomers — acknowledged and unacknowledged, recorded and unrecorded — have been invited into this treaty in the spirit of peace, friendship, and respect. We acknowledge that First Nations, Inuit, and Métis peoples lived here before us and keep living here now, as we live here and keep living here.

Canadian Contemporary Dance Theatre presents


May 27 - 28, 2022

Founder & Artistic Director

Deborah Lundmark

Founder & Managing Director

Michael deConinck Smith

Guest Artistic Associate

Natasha Poon Woo

Guest Rehearsal Directors

Sierra Kellman, Ryan Lee, Sasha Ludavicius, Natasha Poon Woo

The Company

Troy Atamanuk, Valeria Chiappetta, Hannah Cohen, Madison Costa, Hope Fritz, Estella Haensel, Marie-Elena LeBlanc Bellissimo, Jaedyn Richards, Zachary Seto

Guest Artist

Willem Sadler


Emily Kern, Nisha Kulkarni, Naomi Tyson

Artist in Residence

Rodney Diverlus

Resident Lighting Designer

Arun Srinivasan

Associate Lighting Designer

Noah Feaver

Resident Costume Designer & Producer

Krista Dowson

Stage Manager

Caitlyn Albanese

Graphic Design



Francesca Chudnoff, David Hou


Kendra Epik, Paul-John Elisha, Camille Rojas

Company Instructors, Faculty

Carmen Cairns, Deborah Lundmark, Nicholas Ruscica, Brett Taylor, Stephanie Violin

Company Instructors, Guest Artists

Johanna Bergfeldt, Sylvie Bouchard, Zachary Cardwell, Julia Cosentino, Marq Frerichs, Chantelle Good, Sam Grist, Sierra Kellman, Tia Kushniruk, Louis Laberge-Côté, Ryan Lee, Bob McCollum, Lukas Malkowski, Alyssa Martin, Sahara Morimoto, Jennifer Nichols, Natasha Poon Woo, Katya Robledo, Livia Savoy, Katherine Semchuk, Darryl Tracy

Company Accompanists

Jake Oelrichs, Ian Wright, Marcel Hoff, Kevin Tam, Dmitry Zabrotsky

Director, Core Apprentice Program

Megan Nadain

Director, Young Apprentice Program

Jane-Alison McKinney

School of CCDT Administrator

Kathryn Fallowfield

Director, Marketing & Administration

Jane-Alison McKinney

Director, Outreach & Administration

Natasha Jorge-Moore




Premiere: May 2009

Choreography: Colin Connor

Original Music: Robert Moran

Costume Design: Leah Piehl

Lighting Design: Arun Srinivasan after DK Roth

Rehearsal Direction: Ryan Lee, Natasha Poon Woo

Dancers: Troy Atamanuk, Valeria Chiappetta, Madison Costa, Estella Haensel, Jaedyn Richards, Willem Sadler

Understudies: Hope Fritz, Emily Kern, Marie-Elena LeBlanc Bellissimo, Naomi Tyson


Premiere: May 2018

Choreography: Roderick George

Original Music & Mix: Lotic, with additional music by Sega Bodega and Rihanna (Total Freedom Remix)

Costume Design: Roderick George

Costume Production: Krista Dowson

Lighting Design: Arun Srinivasan

Rehearsal Direction: Sierra Kellman, Natasha Poon Woo

Dancers: Troy Atamanuk, Valeria Chiappetta, Hannah Cohen, Madison Costa, Hope Fritz, Estella Haensel, Marie-Elena LeBlanc Bellissimo, Jaedyn Richards, Willem Sadler, Zachary Seto

Understudies: Emily Kern, Nisha Kulkarni, Naomi Tyson

A sardonic riff on pop culture, a shin-kick to authority, a reset of just who is in charge here.


Special Thanks to Kaiya Lee


World Premiere

Choreography: Deborah Lundmark

Music: Radiohead, Exit Music; adapted & improvised by Thompson Egbo-Egbo

Musicians: Thompson Egbo-Egbo (Piano), Anthony Daniel (Drums), and Randall Hall (Bass)

Costumes: Krista Dowson

Lighting Design: Arun Srinivasan

Original Painted Projection Image:  Britta deConinck Smith

Rehearsal Direction: Ryan Lee

Dancers: Troy Atamanuk, Willem Sadler, Zachary Seto

"To three extraordinary young men, my heartfelt gratitude for giving so much of yourselves to this creation.

In memory of my dad, Robert Lundmark, January 2, 1927 - May 19, 2022."

—Deborah Lundmark


Locust-cry was made possible thanks to the generosity of Kenny Pearl, Laurence & Judy Siegel and Geoff Rytell.


The title Locust-cry comes from a haiku by Matsuo Basho (1644-1694)


Reap the Wind

World Premiere

Choreography: Charlotte Boye-Christensen

Music: Jonny Greenwood

Costumes: Krista Dowson

Lighting Design: Arun Srinivasan

Rehearsal Direction: Sasha Ludavicius

Dancers: Troy Atamanuk, Madison Costa, Estella Haensel, Jaedyn Richards, Willem Sadler, Zachary Seto

Understudies: Valeria Chiappetta, Marie-Elena LeBlanc Bellissimo

Ritual, tribalism, community…these themes and the theatrical score drove the physicality I leaned into with this work. The dancers plow through space yet also find themselves swept, vulnerable in their search for a connection to one another.

—Charlotte Boye-Christensen

Reap the Wind was made possible thanks to the generosity of Kate Schatzky and Shawn Kimel.



World Premiere

Choreography: Jennifer Archibald

Music: Kaleema (feat. Chancha Via Circuito), Hauschka, Volker Bertelmann, Tokio Myers, Armand Amar

Costume Design: Angel Wong

Costume Production: Krista Dowson

Lighting Design: Arun Srinivasan

Rehearsal Direction: Sierra Kellman, Ryan Lee, Natasha Poon Woo

Dancers: Troy Atamanuk, Valeria Chiappetta, Hannah Cohen, Madison Costa, Hope Fritz, Estella Haensel, Jaedyn Richards, Willem Sadler, Zachary Seto

Understudy: Marie-Elena LeBlanc Bellissimo

when the mental lattice no longer provides an accurate map,

when inverse one-to-many mapping gives rise to ambiguities…

‘Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold’.

LATTICE was made possible thanks to the generosity of Kate Schatzky and Shawn Kimel.

The Company

Canadian Contemporary Dance Theatre is a repertory company founded in 1980 for emerging artists under 19 years of age by Artistic Director, Deborah Lundmark, and Managing Director, Michael deConinck Smith. Company members and audiences alike enjoy one of Canada’s largest and most diverse repertoires including creations by such dance luminaries as David Earle, Carol Anderson, Danny Grossman, Margie Gillis, and Peggy Baker and, more recently, Colin Connor, Jennifer Archibald, Apolonia Velasquez, Hanna Kiel, Jera Wolfe, and Gioconda Barbuto, among many others. Presentation highlights include appearances at Toronto’s Princess of Wales and Royal Alexandra Theatres for the Creative Trust and Dancers for Life Galas and five invitations to the Canada Dance Festival in Ottawa. A leading touring company, CCDT has introduced over 300,000 young people to dance through its Ontario Arts Access program, and won the Toronto Arts Foundation’s prestigious Arts for Youth Award for its development of young artists and young audiences.

Company Dancers

2021/22 Season

Click any artist for details

The Company

Rooftop Photos by Francesca Chudnoff

Zachary's photo by James Farber

Artist Biographies

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Deborah Lundmark

Co-Founder, Artistic Director & Resident Choreographer

Deborah Lundmark, Co-Founder, Artistic Director and Resident Choreographer, has created more than 40 works for her company. These range from performance collaborations with the Danny Grossman Dance Company, Dancemakers and Toronto Dance Theatre to live co-presentations with blues artists Thompson Egbo-Egbo, Carlos del Junco and Jerome Godboo. From her Street Songs (1980) to the darkening green (2021), 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, Roberto Campanella and Jera Wolfe and, from abroad, Colin Connor, Sidra Bell, Kevin Wynn, Roderick George, Jennifer Archibald and Alexander Whitley. Her company 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 leading companies including the Limón Dance Company, Mark Morris Dance Group, Doug Varone and Dancers, Gallim Dance, Company Wayne McGregor and Skånes Dansteater, among many others. Most recently her film, the darkening green, has won numerous international awards including the Cannes World Film Festival’s Best Dance Film and Best Original Song, composed and performed by Greg Harrison and Frances Miller.

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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Natasha Poon Woo

Guest Artistic Associate & Guest Rehearsal Director 

Natasha Poon Woo began her formal training and performing career with Canadian Contemporary Dance Theatre from ages 10-17. She holds a BFA from the Conservatory of Dance at SUNY Purchase, having graduated summa cum laude with the President’s Award for Achievement. Natasha is an active performer with Toronto dance companies Rock Bottom Movement and Côté Danse, and has also worked with The Dietrich Group, Roderick George, BoucharDanse, Fujiwara Dance Inventions, Benjamin Landsberg, Ryan Lee / The Platform, Hit & Run Dance Productions, Gadfly, Little Pear Garden, Kevin Wynn, and Conny Janssen Danst, among others. She is a Dora Award-winning performer with Rock Bottom for its acclaimed 2019 production of hollow mountain.


Natasha is currently a Guest Artistic Associate of CCDT, after serving as the company’s Associate Artistic Director from 2019-2021 and Rehearsal Director from 2012-2021. She has been the Rehearsal Director for Human Body Expression since 2015, in addition to assisting the creative processes of many independent artists for the past decade. A member of Healthy Dancer Canada, Natasha is a certified instructor of The Extension Method™ as well as a sought-after dance educator specializing in Limón-based modern technique and C-I Training™ (certified and mentored by Donna Krasnow).


Photo by Drew Berry


Jennifer Archibald