Since 2005, the Canadian Dance Assembly (CDA) has issued a message on behalf of the dance community in Canada as part of International Dance Day (IDD) on April 29.
This year’s IDD Ambassador is Halifax-based dance artist and Mocean Dance Co-Artistic Director Susanne Chui. She was invited to share her message about dance’s integral place in the lives of Canadians.
“We are always in motion; our blood flows, our lungs expand and contract and our hearts beat like a drum keeping time. All around us the world is in motion; leaves flutter, waves roll and crash, cars zip by. Inside of this wonderful life-song our minds and spirits swirl, connecting us to our inner and outer worlds and to each other. Dance is inside and all around us; all we have to do is open to it.
Remember the first time you felt the urge to dance. Perhaps it was a moment of pure joy or a moment of sorrow; maybe you were alone or with others, in your living room, in a dance class, in an open field. Perhaps there was music playing or perhaps it was quiet. Something inside of you could not be contained. You were moved and it moved you. Dancing from this place is expansive; it’s electric. You can see it in children moving freely; you can see it in someone letting loose on a dance club floor, and you can see it in a brilliant performance onstage.
It is from this pure place of dance that I call upon us to awaken this International Dance Day (and every day!) and to share it with the world.
Happy International Dance Day from the East Coast!” ~ Susanne Chui
Chui is a School of Toronto Dance Theatre graduate. She danced independently in Toronto from 1999 to 2007 and was a founding member of TILT: sound + motion dance company in Toronto but regularly returned to Halifax where she founded SiNS (Sometimes in Nova Scotia) dance collective with Jacinte Armstrong and Sara Coffin. Since returning to Halifax full-time, Chui has become immersed in the Halifax arts community, dancing for local choreographers, improvising with musicians and other artists and creating her own work. Chui joined Mocean as a dancer in 2011 and became part of the artistic leadership with Sara Coffin in 2012.
Last year’s IDD Ambassador, Luca “Lazylegz” Patuelli, will be rejoining CDA as their National Youth Ambassador for Dance. In this role, he will demonstrate to young Canadians how dance can improve one’s physical and mental health, emotional well-being, intellectual development, cultural expression and creativity.
Join the Canadian dance community in celebrating International Dance Day on April 29 by sharing your dance-life photo or video. Details here.