June 24th marked the thirty-fourth annual Dora Mavor Moore Awards in Toronto. Hosted by Second City alumni Matt Baram and Naomi Snieckus, the awards celebrated excellence in theatre, dance and opera. In the Dance Division, UK-based Hofesh Shechter Company’s Political Mother presented by Canadian Stage won Outstanding Production. DanceWorks had two wins: Outstanding Performance – Ensemble for Road Trip by Susie Burpee and Linnea Swan, and Outstanding Performance – Female to Molly Johnson in Lab Rats by Marie France Forcier. Santee Smith won Outstanding Choreography for Susuriwka – willow bridge, and Aakash Odedra won Outstanding Performance – Male for his performance in Alchemy by Sampradaya Dance Creations. Outstanding Lighting Design went to Marc Parent for Peggy Baker Dance Projects’ Stereophonic, and Outstanding Sound Design/Composition was awarded to Rodney Sharman for Coleman Lemieux & Compagnie’s From the House of Mirth. This year’s Audience Choice Award was presented to The Wizard of Oz, with choreography by Arlene Phillips.
Earlier in May, at the Drama Desk Awards in New York, Gypsy Snider and Chet Walker received the Outstanding Choreography award for Pippin. Snider, one of the seven founding directors of the Montréal based–circus company Les 7 doigts de la main, was responsible for staging the production’s circus artists, many of whom have performed with Les 7 doigts in the past. “I’ve always believed that circus was an art form of infinite possibilities. Pippin proves this once again,” said Snider.