In the past few years, two of Canada’s most prominent contemporary dance companies have been shifting their perspective away from the traditional company structure, and the resulting expectations, toward creation hubs. The idea is to serve the evolving needs of the choreographic community. Now, Dancemakers Centre for Creation and Centre de Création O Vertigo (CCOV) are teaming up to create a cross-city artistic bridge between Toronto and Montréal.
Each creation centre is holding an open call for applications from artists in their respective cities to select choreographers for exchange for a week-long residency. Complete with travel, per diem, accommodation and a week’s stipend, the residencies are intended for artists without an existing network already established in the other city and to help foster stronger artistic links and opportunities between the two companies and city centres. Artists will also be welcome to opt in for facilitated introductions to the community through showings or conversations.
One artist from each city will be selected for a week-long residency exchange. The Montréal-based artist will work at Dancemakers from March 19th through 25th, 2018 and the Toronto-based artist will work at CCOV from April 9th through 15th.
Located in Montréal’s beautiful Place des Arts, CCOV was formerly Ginette Laurin’s O Vertigo, a monumental dance company that stood with strength for thirty years before Laurin decided to pass the torch on to the next generation of creators. In that vein, and with the help of three appointed promising choreographers, Mélanie Demers, Catherine Gaudet and Caroline Laurin-Beaucage, the transformation to CCOV began with the appointment of Executive Director Paul Caskey and the three-year Artistic Curator Andrew Tay. Their mandate includes offering “performances, labs, traineeships, roundtables etc., which make the CCOV a focal point for exchanges and artistic reflections, an incubator and catalyst for ideas and new talent.” They promise to “contribute to contemporary dance’s evolution by efficiently supporting the research, creation and production of new choreographies.”
Established in 1974 as Dancemakers, and retitled Dancemakers Centre for Creation in 2002, the centre underwent a large restructuring in 2014 when they shifted to the new Incubation Production House Model. Current curator Amelia Erhardt invites three resident artists, be they local, national or international, to choreograph over staggered three-year terms.