Sean Ling photo by Makoto Hirata courtesy of Peggy Baker Dance Projects

Vancouver’s favourite rule-breaker turns 31 with a dramatic new spin for the beloved Small Stage series as MovEnt with Music on Main present Dances for a Small Stage 31 as part of the 2014 Modulus Festival.

This daringly different arrangement will synergize live dance and music, headlined by Canadian treasures – and sweethearts – composer John Oswald and choreographer Holly Small, in their first-ever joint performance on the West coast stage.

Vanessa Goodman
[Vanessa Goodman]

“In a departure from our usual concept of five to seven-minute dance works, MovEnt has joined with musical counterpart, Music on Main for an evening integrating live music as well as dance,” says MovEnt Artistic Producer Julie-anne Saroyan. “This type of interwoven collaboration has experienced an unfortunate deterioration over the years, resulting from a hyper-reliance on pre- recorded sounds. I can’t think of two stronger leaders for this crucial renaissance than the grandparents of music and dance collaborations, John and Holly. These two inspired minds were mentors to me at York University, and have been a major influence on my philosophy towards movement and music.”

Since its inception in 2002, Dances for a Small Stage has wowed audiences by tearing down formalities and creating intimate, raw scenarios in which to experience dance. The popular series is renowned for bringing unique and innovative contemporary dance, inclusive of all disciplines, to a rough–and–tumble cabaret setting.

Karissa Barry photo by Yvonne Chew
[Karissa Barry photo by Yvonne Chew]

Oswald, who will be presenting a selection of his original compositions, will be joined by Small in an unprecedented opportunity to see these celebrated partners perform side by side. Sharing the signature Small Stage are dance artists Makaila Wallace (in a work choreographed by Karissa Barry), Vanessa Goodman, Stewart Iguidez, in addition to visiting Toronto dancers Sean Ling and Jessica Runge.

Also on loan from Toronto is multi award-winning Cecilia String Quartet, internationally renowned for their innovative programming and expressive interplay. These dynamic young female musicians will perform two works – a Tchaikovsky score, String Quartet No. 1 in D major, Opus 11, and preLieu, a masterful composition by Oswald created in 1991 for the renowned Kronos Quartet.

This three-show performance, curated by Saroyan, will feature the ever-endearing Billy Marchenski as emcee and maestro for the evening.

Dances for a Small Stage 31

Dates: October 23 to 25; doors at 7 pm, show at 8 pm
Venue: Ukrainian Centre, 154 East 10th Avenue at Main Street, Vancouver
Tickets: In advance online; limited cash-only tickets available at the door on performance nights.

About MovEnt

Founded in 2001, MovEnt is a Vancouver-based charitable non-profit dance society devoted to producing new contemporary dance work, supporting dance artists and developing an audience for contemporary dance. MovEnt produces dance that encourages high expectations and produces accessible, engaging art.

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