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Discover Dance

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You are invited to Discover Dance, a lunch hour series where you will be introduced to some of Toronto’s incredible dance artists. These special presentations, hosted by the award-winning choreographer Nova Bhattacharya, are free and for all ages. Through demonstrations, performance, and conversation, we will discover how dance forms from near and far are being woven into Toronto’s cultural scene. You will have the opportunity to share your thoughts, ask questions, and maybe even help an artist name their next work! Join us on a fascinating exploration of this rich and incredibly diverse art form.

Special thanks:

Nova Dance Logo        Toronto Arts Council Logo

January 2018 - Neena Jayarajan
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Neena Jayarajan

© photo Andrew Adams

Artist: Neena Jayarajan
Dance Style: Bharatnatyam & Odissi

Tuesday, January 9, 2018 12pm-1pm
Toronto Centre for the Arts, Upper Gallery
5040 Yonge St, North York, ON
Main Doors Open at 11:30am

Wednesday, January 10, 2018 12pm-1pm
Sony Centre for the Performing Arts, Lower Lobby
1 Front Street East, Toronto ON
Main Doors Open at 11:30am

Artist Biography
Neena Jayarajan is a Bharatanatyam dancer who trained under the tutelage of Guru Dr. Menaka Thakkar for over 28 years. She has been assistant teacher at Nrtyakala for over 15 years, and was also the Assistant Artistic Director (AAD), lead dancer and rehearsal director of the Menaka Thakkar Dance Company (MTDC) for over 6 years. Neena assisted in re-choreographing remounts of MTDC productions & new works and toured across North America and Asia. Through MTDC Neena studied Odissi from renowned dancer Sujata Mohapatra and taken intensives in other art forms including Kalaripayattu, Ballet, Modern dance and Butoh. She performed in Sylvie Bouchards piece La gigue en souvenir, Natasha Bakht’s Riaz, and Nova Bhattacharya’s piece Broken Lines which won the Summerworks 2016 Outstanding Direction Award. Neena has also completed her MA in dance from York University and was a 2016 recipient of the Chalmers Arts Fellowship Grant allowing her to explore future dance projects.

If you have any questions or concerns regarding accessibility services, please contact our Education & Engagement Department at education@sonycentre.ca

February 2018 - Gein Wong
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Gein Wong

Artist: Gein Wong
Dance Style: Inter-disciplinary

Tuesday, February 20, 2018 12pm-1pm
Toronto Centre for the Arts, Upper Gallery
5040 Yonge St, North York, ON
Main Doors Open at 11:30am

Wednesday, February 21, 2018 12pm-1pm
Sony Centre for the Performing Arts, Lower Lobby
1 Front Street East, Toronto ON
Main Doors Open at 11:30am

Artist Biography
Gein Gizhii Kwe Wong
is an interdisciplinary director and artist of First Nations and Asian descent who is Two-Spirited and Queer.  Her works focus on obvious things like gender, class and race, as well as things a little less obvious like gender, class and race. She sits on the Board of Directors of the Toronto Arts Council, as was an inaugural member of the TAC Cultural Leaders Lab.  She is a recipient of the 2014 Ken McDougall Director’s Award and 2015 CCGSD Canadian Youth Role Model Lifetime Achievement Award.  Gein is Artistic Director of Eventual Ashes, a co-owner of the world’s oldest LGBT bookstore, Glad Day Bookshop, a member of the Indigenous eco-restoration group, Naadmaagit Ki, and a member of the Indigenous Two-Spirit drum group, Balance Bringers.  She was a Canadian Stage Director in Residence, a Harbourfront Centre Resident Artist, a two-time Philadelphia Asian Arts Initiative Resident Artist, the inaugural resident artist at fu-GEN Asian Canadian Theatre, collaborated on a New York HERE Arts Centre Residency and a member of the Native Earth Performing Arts’ Animikiig Creation Unit.   She conceived and directed “Say Their Names, Remember”, a 500 person performance piece which opened the Ai Weiwei exhibit at the Art Gallery of Ontario.  she co-created “The Forgetful City”, a site specific interactive video installation that reopened the RC Harris Water Filtration Plant in Toronto - an art-deco castle closed to the public for a decade due to 9/11. At World Pride 2014 she commemorated the 45th anniversary of the Stonewall Riots by creating a large scale immersive performance experience to remember Stonewall.  In 2016, she co-created “Long (Dragon) House” an immersive experience performed inside the Song Dong exhibit at the Art Gallery of Ontario and was invited to Brown University to give the talk “Intersectionality is an Ocean”.  In she co-created The Interstellar Spadina House Museum Guided Tour and Cobechenonk an immersive canoe trip through time up the Humber River.  This year she is directing the film dance piece Becoming which will be presented in Toronto Feb 15-18 (Progress Festival/Anandam/Eventual Ashes/Wild Moon) and in Ghana.

If you have any questions or concerns regarding accessibility services, please contact our Education & Engagement Department at education@sonycentre.ca

March 2018 - Natasha Powell
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 Holla Jazz

© photo David Hou

Artist: Natasha Powell
Dance Style: Vernacular Jazz

Tuesday, March 20, 2018 12pm-1pm
Toronto Centre for the Arts, Upper Gallery
5040 Yonge St, North York, ON
Main Doors Open at 11:30am

Wednesday, March 14, 2018 12pm-1pm
Sony Centre for the Performing Arts, Lower Lobby
1 Front Street East, Toronto ON
Main Doors Open at 11:30am

Artist Biography

Natasha Powell
© photo David Hou

Through their soulful and funky approach to vernacular jazz dance, Holla Jazz presents engaging and entertaining performances, intriguing choreography, and dynamite collaborations. The Holla Jazz experience is marked by their cool and contemporary way of producing fresh dance works, all while inspiring a lasting love and appreciation for jazz dance and music.

Established in 2016 by Artistic Director Natasha Powell, Holla Jazz was founded as a forum for developing and presenting artists that work and improvise together, to create harmonious and transformative experiences. Working with both live and recorded music, the company aims to reinvigorate jazz dance and its sister dances as innovative, important, and necessary vehicles for expression.

Connect with Natasha Powell
Instagram - @hollajazz
Facebook - hollajazzdance
Website - hollajazz.com

If you have any questions or concerns regarding accessibility services, please contact our Education & Engagement Department at education@sonycentre.ca

April 2018 - Atri Nundy
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Atri Nundy

© photo Jake Martella

Artist: Atri Nundy

Dance Style: Bharatnatyam

Tuesday, April 17, 2018 12pm-1pm
Toronto Centre for the Arts, Upper Gallery
5040 Yonge St, North York, ON
Main Doors Open at 11:30am

Wednesday, April 18, 2018 12pm-1pm
Sony Centre for the Performing Arts, Lower Lobby
1 Front Street East, Toronto ON
Main Doors Open at 11:30am

Artist Biography

Atri Nundy
The passion for dance was formed at a very young age for Atri Nundy when she started learning Bharatnatyam at Sampradaya Dance Academy under her teacher Lata Pada. After completing her arangetram (graduation) in 2005, she continues to work as a teacher at Sampradaya Dance Academy and is a Company dancer and choreographer at Sampradaya Dance Creations.

While training in Bharatnatyam, Atri was fortunate enough to be able to train in various dance forms, such as rhythmic gymnastics, ballet, jazz and acrobatics during her childhood. This combination has given her the opportunity and interest to explore beyond the traditional realms of Bharatnatyam. Although she continues to practice traditional repertoire, she has a keen interest in collaborating with other art forms to not only strengthen her own foundations but also to find a different movement vocabulary.

Connect with Atri Nundy
Instagram - @atri_n
Facebook - atri.nundy

If you have any questions or concerns regarding accessibility services, please contact our Education & Engagement Department at education@sonycentre.ca

May 2018 - Parul Gupta
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Parul Gupta
© photo Giva

Artist: Parul Gupta
Dance Style: Kathak


Tuesday, May 15, 2018 12pm-1pm
Toronto Centre for the Arts, Upper Gallery
5040 Yonge St, North York, ON
Main Doors Open at 11:30am

Wednesday, May 16, 2018 12pm-1pm
Sony Centre for the Performing Arts, Lower Lobby
1 Front Street East, Toronto ON
Main Doors Open at 11:30am

More information coming soon!

If you have any questions or concerns regarding accessibility services, please contact our Education & Engagement Department at education@sonycentre.ca