Announcement: International Dance Day in Toronto, April 29th, The Canadian Dance Assembly

The Canadian Dance Assembly will coordinate a free noon-hour event at Yonge and Dundas Square in celebration of International Dance Day.  Our enthusiastic MC, Kevin Ormsby of KasheDance, will guide us through a dance journey to be sure we ‘catch the rhythm’ on this special occasion.  The Canadian Dance Assembly will invite local politicians to attend and dance with us.


The event will begin with a Yoga Dance class taught by Lululemon Ambassador Jaimee Horn.  The crowd will then transform into a lively flash mob as Patrick Parsons of Ballet Creole teaches the International Dance Day choreography commissioned by the National Ballet School.  Then join Motus O Dance Theatre (courtesy of Prologue to the Performing Arts) in some fun-filled contact improvisation. The afternoon will conclude with performances by Dance Migration (courtesy of Cultural Pluralism in the Arts Movement Ontario) and other guests.

Catch the Rhythm is completely free and is open to general public ages 1 to 100.

Every year, the International Dance Committee of the UNESCO International Theatre Institute circulates a message around the world as part of International Dance Day celebrations. Additionally, since 2005, the Canadian Dance Assembly (CDA) has issued a Canadian message in conjunction with the UNESCO message. Santee Smith, choreographer, dancer, and Artistic Director of Kaha:wi Dance Theatre offers her call to action, on behalf of the Canadian Dance Assembly in celebration of International Dance Day 2014.

“Let dance into your life. Call dance into your life. Breathe dance into your life. Let dance be the connection between your spirit and the living universe. Let dance be the voice of your soulful resistance, your statement of I am here, in this space, now. Let dance resonate from your ancestral memories, from your DNA extending like tendrils to future generations. Call your body forth to move, to speak a language without words. Dance your dreams and poetry. Find that place deep inside your inner landscape that longs for expression. Close your eyes and remember the heartbeat rhythm, the first music you heard in your consciousness. Be the witness to a singular body animated in time and space or to the awesomeness of a multitude moving in unity. Let dance represent your metaphor, art, ritual, ceremony and ecstatic transformation. Energize, revitalize and renew yourself through dance. Renew your bond to the rhythms of the earth. Heal yourself, be yourself and together we can dance our humanity. Transform your life … let dance into your life. Join the celebration and ceremony of life; join the dance.”

~ Santee Smith, Artistic Director – Kaha:wi Dance Theatre

Santee Smith
Santee Smith is a mother, performer, an award-winning producer and choreographer. She is from the Kahnyen’kehàka Nation, Turtle Clan from Six Nations, Ontario. Her dance journey began early and included attending Canada’s National Ballet School. She holds Kinesiology and Psychology degrees from McMaster University and a M.A in Dance from York University. In 1996 the opportunity to choreograph ignited her creative force and she produced her first major choreographic work, Kaha:wi in 2004. In 2005, Santee founded Kaha:wi Dance Theatre, a vehicle for her artistic work. Her artistic work speaks about identity and humanity. Discovering her dancing body is Santee’s life-long inquiry.

Santee Smith is currently in residence at The Banff Centre in the Interrarium program with Theatre Arts.

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