Get to know your CADA/West

September 2013 Member's Newsletter

This month's edition features a call for Dance Response participants; Liz Lerman; a profile of Ashley Whitehead; and our monthly dance citizenship challenge.

Dance Response 2013–14

Wanna flex your dance dialogue muscle?
Want discount tix to shows?
Join our 2nd season of Dance Response.

Dance Response is CADA/West's participatory course in dance dialogue. It runs from November 2013–April 2014 and gets you into shows with DanceHouse, VIDF and The Dance Centre at a discounted rate.

See 6 six shows, stay for 6 post-show chats (30 mins) and post 6 written responses.

Find out more...

An Evening with Liz Lerman

Liz Lerman, a choreographer, performer, writer, educator, speaker and developer of critical response (which inspired our Dance Response program), is coming to Vancouver:

October 16, 2013 | 7pm
Djavad Mowafaghian Cinema, Goldcorp Centre for the Arts
Tickets: $10 | click here to buy tickets

CADA/West Student Member:
Ashley Whitehead

Contemporary Dance Artist, Emerging Choreographer

How old are you?

I am 27 years old.

When did you start dancing?

I did gymnastics for several years competitively and when I became too tall at 10 I started taking ballet and moved into jazz a few years later.

What sort of training have you participated in?

The majority of my training has been gymnastics, jazz, ballet, hip hop and contemporary.

I have been a part of a lot of training programs in Vancouver including Harbour Dance's Intensive Training Program, The Source Dance Co. consisting of jazz and hip hop training, directed by Joanne Pesusich, and Souldiers Hip Hop Company directed by Kim Sato which focuses on education in the 4 cultural elements of Hip Hop, as well as training in locking, popping, breaking and the fusions we see in the old and new styles.

I am currently in my 4th year of training with Modus Operandi which is a contemporary dance training program directed by Out Innerspace directors Tiffany Tregarthen and David Raymond. I have also trained in the P.A.R.T.S. summer school in Belgium, spent 3 weeks taking class in New York, and I continually take part in workshops by local and guest artists/teachers.

What/Who are you currently working on/with?

I have just finished projects with an SFU film student, Rheanna Toy, on her 4th year film project, and Jen Aoki on an excerpt of a longer work for a performance at Lab Art Vancouver.

I am also a regular participant with Ben Brown's Music & Movement Mondays, bringing together different groups from the music and dance world to improvise.

For my own work, I am researching new ideas for short term projects that are for personal development and collecting information to write grant applications for a project I was working on this past year.

Who's work are you currently interested in, in dance or outside of it?

OUTSIDE OF DANCE (less about who, more about what): I have always loved making clothes and working with fabric. I love the innovative, abstract work that is more recognized in what's considered avant-garde or contemporary art settings, and I love the practicality of design that blends the current trends in art and commercialism.

I don't have anyone I am following right now. I tend to be engrossed by my own curiosity and never ending projects. From there, I find inspiration from random sources that I catch in galleries and on TV.

I am also forever obsessed with interior design and have always been attracted to functionality and innovative craftsmanship with home decor. I find myself using my own craftiness and spacial awareness to constantly redesign the atmosphere of my space at home. These are both passions that will soon influence the atmosphere of the dance work I create.

DANCE: I find myself interested in art that has relevance to the human experience, that is personal and is clear in its priorities. This is an obviously broad spectrum and for now is what I'm comfortable appreciating.

What draws me into contemporary art is the idea that it is a place to share honest, original perspectives. I think that there are a plethora of innovative thinkers here in Vancouver. I find a particular influence and inspiration from artists that seem to have similar interests to mine such as the intricate, consuming work that artists like Justine Chambers create, or the more grooving inspired, beat driven artists like the 605 Collective, both of which have high accessibility and clearly defined states.

Like many other contemporary dancers, I also find interest in many groups from Europe, one of which being DV8, for their evocative work that has a priority of extensive research and accessibility as well. A European partnership I found really memorable and satisfying was Pieter Ampe and Guilherme Garrido in their presentation of Still Standing You. I think they make memorable, highly developed work that demonstrates the relationship in a very honest way.

Where do you see yourself in 5 years?

In 5 years I see myself further down the path I'm on as a dancer, creator, and collaborator. I see myself working in Vancouver and starting to work abroad, exploring new ideas, collaborating with artists of forms I have yet to become inspired by, and creating work that is being presented on a national level.

Are there any resources that have been very helpful to you in your career thus far?

The best resources I've had so far have been people with insights and approaches that have helped me define what I want from dance.

The other resources that are helping me now are CADA/West, The Dance Centre with their subsidy for independent artists, and I look forward to starting a membership with the DTRC, all of which will help me as I pave a path that is less about answers to why I dance and more about how I can dance the way I desire.

Speak With Your Feet

This month's dance citizenship challenge...

Attend An AGM.

Attending an AGM is a major service for dance companies. Your attendance is recorded and reported to funders that financially support these companies. Often companies like to make it fun, offering performances, snacks and drinks. While there, you'll learn a bit about the business side of running a company and meet the volunteer board of directors, who are usually people passionate about the arts. If you're a member of that company, the AGM is an opportunity to vote on issues arising. It's a democratic process and one that CADA members should at least be familiar with.

If you are hosting an AGM, please contact us and we will get the word out.

We share joint membership with the CDA and all CADA/West members are automatically members of both organizations.

The CDA comes out west, hosting its National Conference & AGM in Vancouver this November 19–20. This is a great opportunity to voice the points of view of Western Canadian dance artists, cultural workers and supporters. So, save the dates, keep apprised of announcements and plan to get involved on a national scale this fall.

As members, you should be getting emails from them. If not, please check out the Membership section of their site. Also, follow them on Twitter & Facebook.

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designed, written and built by Deanna Peters, CADA/West Communications Officer