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Archive for the ‘Tina Chu’ Category

Review: Living Dances

Posted by art On November - 23 - 2011

Living Dances
Choreographed by James Kudelka
Performed by Rhonda Baker, Ryan Boorne, Valerie Calam, Michael Caldwell, Lauren EM Chin, Luke Garwood, Andrew Giday, Tyler Gledhill, Jones Henry, Laurence Lemieux, Daniel McArthur, Michael Sean Marye, Christianne Ullmark
November 12 @ Ryerson Theatre

By Tina Chu

Living Dances opened with Fifteen Heterosexual Duets, which saw Kudelka explore heterosexuality through male and female roles. Without a hint of cliché, the choreography’s simplicity lies only in the clarity of each duet and how Kudelka is able to capture and convey personalities without any excess in stylization where each gesture felt necessary and just right.

Admittedly, there were split seconds where certain duets felt ever so slightly dissonant, but overall the piece possessed a coherent and natural progression that allowed the fifteen duets to meld into and unravel from one another.

Particularly captivating were the duets of Valerie Calam and Daniel McArthur. Calam and McArthur were the only dancers to share the same partners throughout the piece and unsurprisingly so, as their compatibility as dancers were unmistakable and aside from Christianne Ullmark and Ryan Boorne’s duet, the pair seemed to truly steal the show. Read the rest of this entry »

Review: ProArteDanza’s Season 2011

Posted by art On October - 6 - 2011

Marissa Parzei and Tyler Gledhill perform in ProArteDanza's Season 2011 piece entitled En Parallèle. Choreographer: Roberto Campanella

ProArteDanza presents
Choreography by Roberto Campanella, Guillaume Côté, Robert Glumbek and Kevin O’Day
Performed by Johanna Bergfeldt, Valerie Calam, Marc Cardarelli, Tyler Gledhill, Louis Laberge-Côté, Ryan Lee, Marissa Parzei, Brendan Wyatt, and Mami Hata
Runs until October 8 @ Fleck Dance Theatre

By Tina Chu

When seeing a highly esteemed company such as ProArteDanza for the first time, there is always the question of whether one’s excessive buildup of expectations could outweigh and upset the experience of the performance.

And though anticipating nothing but the best from ProArteDanza, its Season 2011 still exceeded my expectations, with strong choreography from Robert Glumbek, Roberto Campanella, Kevin O’Day, Guillaume Côté and memorable performances from the company’s dancers.

The program begins with Glumbek’s Verwoben, a piece named in German, meaning interwoven. Initially, the title appears to refer to the dancers as they entangle and disentangle themselves from one another, but as the performance takes form, it becomes palpable how the title also lends itself to the idea of intertwining music and movement. Read the rest of this entry »

Review: from thine eyes

Posted by art On September - 29 - 2011

from thine eyes
Presented by DanceWorks
Co-produced by Native Earth Performing Arts and Signal Theatre
Choreographed and directed by Michael Greyeyes
Written by Yvette Nolan
Movement dramaturgy by Kate Alton
Music composed by Miquelon Rodriguez
Performed by Michael Caldwell, Luke Garwood, Ceinwen Gobert, Sean Ling, Shannon Litzenberger, and Claudia Moore
Ran September 22-24 @ Enwave Theatre

By Tina Chu

Death and dying may be an indefatigably intriguing theme common to art, but as the subject matter for the opening production to DanceWorks’s 2011-2012 Mainstage Series, it comes as something of a surprise.

Thought it’s difficult and obviously sombre subject to approach, from thine eyes presents a collection of four narratives that examine the idea that the unknowable truths of one’s life and of oneself are revealed through the act of dying and that these revelations are the passages into death.

Directed and choreographed by Greyeyes and written by Nolan, the narratives are not only complex thematically, but incredibly dense in detail as stories. It first begins with performer Sean Ling portraying a drug abuser who recalls the experience of himself unleashed as a murderer in a sudden fit of rage. Then, the scene deconstructs into Michael Caldwell’s performance as an abusive man re-living the violent rituals he inflicted upon his partner Ceinwen Gobert, eerily juxtaposed against memories of the recitation of the wedding vows that would begin this traumatic relationship. Next, Luke Garwood and Shannon Litzenberger performs as a couple wrestling to cope with a miscarriage and straddling the line between preserving the memory of their stillborn and being consumed with a past that will never be, a past that could ultimately destroy their relationship. Finally Claudia Moore closes with her depiction of a doctor who, nearing the end of her life begins to be haunted by visions of patients she has lost in her practice, recalling and beginning to understand how their deaths will ease her into her own inevitable end. Read the rest of this entry »

Review: Kaeja d’Dance’s 20/20 Vision

Posted by art On April - 17 - 2011

Jericho, performed by Norway's Ut i Scenekunsten and choreographed by Allen Kaeja.

20/20 Vision by Kaeja d’Dance
Choreography by Allen and Karen Kaeja
Collaborators: Edgardo Moreno (Composer), Elysha Poirier (Media)
Featuring Karen Kaeja, Courtnae Bowman, Zhenya Cerneacov, Mairéad Filgate, Stéphanie Tremblay Abubo and special guests Ut i Scenekunsten (Norway)
April 12-16 @ Enwave Theatre

By Tina Chu

Kaeja d’Dance’s anticipated 20/20 Vision opened last Tuesday night at Enwave Theatre in celebration of the company’s 20th anniversary. A future-spective instead of a retrospective, 20/20 Vision presents a thrilling glimpse into the future of Kaeja d’Dance, and while it satiates the expectations for the showcase, the performances of 20/20 Vision also build anticipation of what is yet to come for the renowned company.

The creative project of partners, Karen and Allen Kaeja, 20/20 Vision presents four pieces, two of which are choreographed by Karen and two by Allen.

The show begins with a piece about waiting. The Visitor features Karen’s engrossing choreography and a vigorous performance from interpreter Stéphanie Tremblay Abubo. Read the rest of this entry »

Research Intersections Within Practice: Artists and Librarians
Organized by Effie Patelos and Tammy Moorse
March 16 @ the AGO

By Tina Chu

Presented by the Ontario Chapter of the Art Libraries Society of North America, this panel brought together the minds of Adam Lauder, the W.P. Scott Chair for Research in E-Librarianship at York University’s Scott Library; Amy Marshall Furness, the Special Collections Archivist at the E.P. Taylor Research Library and Archives of the AGO; Ian Carr-Harris, Artist and Professor at OCAD University; Eric Schwab, Manager of Digitization and Preservation at the Toronto Public Library, David Poolman, Artist and Professor at Sheridan, and Lisa Steele, Artist, Vtape Founder and the Visual Studies Graduate Program Director at the University of Toronto. Read the rest of this entry »

Review: Are You Okay

Posted by art On March - 8 - 2011

Michael Healey and Peggy Baker. Photo: John Lauener

Are You Okay
Peggy Baker Dance Projects, in association with Necessary Angel
Choreographed by Peggy Baker
Written by Michael Healey
Performed by Peggy Baker and Michael Healey
Directed by Daniel Brooks
Runs until March 13 @ Factory Studio Theatre

By Tina Chu

Described as a kinetic conversation and a mutual autobiography in space, Are You Okay is a continuous, hour-long, physical and verbal dialogue created and performed by Peggy Baker and Michael Healey, which ponders, like an unending late night debate, irresolvable questions surrounding human faculty, artistic creation and its significance.

Matching bare thoughts with minimal set, the performance is witty and candid, fortunately lacking the kind of austerity and aloofness that could easily swallow up such dissections of artistry. Read the rest of this entry »

Event: Towards the Carbon Neutral City

Posted by art On September - 29 - 2010

Towards the Carbon Neutral City
September 22 @ the Direct Energy Centre, Exhibition Place

By Tina Chu

After mounting a successful exhibition at the MaRS Centre this summer with Behnisch Architekten, Thomas Auer of Transsolar ClimateEngineering returned to Toronto for a presentation entitled Towards a Carbon Neutral City.

A continuation of Ecology.Design.Synergy (see a previous related post here) and a part of Toronto’s Green Building Festival, Auer’s presentation showcased how Transsolar’s engineering innovations and architectural collaborations translate to the streets.

Building sustainably for Transsolar, involves more than being carbon neutral. While achieving a low footprint is a priority, equally important goals for Transsolar are whether or not the space it constructs is comfortable, vibrant and a place people desire to inhabit year-round. Read the rest of this entry »

Review: Ecology.Design.Synergy

Posted by art On June - 27 - 2010

Ecology.Design.Synergy: Green Architecture & New Ideas from Germany
Behnisch Architekten + Transsolar KlimaEngineering
June 23 – July 11 @ MaRS Centre Atrium

Text and photos by Tina Chu

Brigitte Shim’s video interview for Ecology.Design.Synergy, perfectly sums up my experience of the exhibit.

As Shim describes it, Ecology.Design.Synergy is an untraditional architecture exhibit because as opposed to focusing on either an architectural or engineering firm, it chooses instead to center on the integrated design processes of Behnisch Arkitekten + Transsolar KlimaEngineering.

The spotlight on Behnisch and Transsolar’s interdisciplinary design strategies is attributed to the larger theme of sustainability presented in the approaches of both practices. In the past, where boundaries have been drawn between disciplines, they have now been dismantled, rendered obsolete in the larger context and challenge of building sustainably. Read the rest of this entry »

Inside the City Lecture

Posted by art On March - 2 - 2010

People per Hectare (E.R.A. Architects - image via

Inside the City
Part of Harbourfront’s View Points Series
Moderated by Ian Chodikoff

By Tina Chu

When the snow blew me in to Harbourfront’s Inside the City lecture, Helena Grdadolnik of Public Workshop was already presenting her works and was just beginning to delve into explanations of the reactivist and activist approaches to architecture.

Essentially, the difference between the two is a difference between being a problem-solver and a problem-identifier. In other words, instead of waiting for clients to present their needs, the activist architect is someone who actively seeks improvement by identifying setbacks in design, and then engages community collaborators and financial partners to devise a solution together.

Not a right approaches, it is more simply one Grdadolnik prefers when designing Public Workshop’s installations and interactions to examine the use of public space and to help people to reconsider and repurpose public spaces that are conventionally overlooked and/or negatively perceived.

Operating with the same approach, Michael McClelland and Graeme Stewart of E.R.A. Architects focuses the process on conducting research.

In the instance of Community Centered and Inside the City, McClelland and Stewart are specifically concerned Read the rest of this entry »

Review: Pteros Tactics

Posted by art On February - 18 - 2010

Photo of Linnea Wong by Kristy Kennedy.

Toronto Dance Theatre’s Pteros Tactics
Choreographed by Christopher House
As part of Harbourfront Centre’s NextSteps series
February 15-20 @ Fleck Dance Theatre

By Tina Chu

Departing for an essay written by Anne Carson entitled Eros the Bittersweet, Christopher House’s Pteros Tactics is an exploration of the instant of desire.

As explored in Carson’s text and House’s choreography, to desire is to acknowledge a lack of something in oneself, thus it is the belief that to attain one’s object of desire would achieve a state of fulfillment.

Pteros Tactics begins with disjointed personal introductions by the dancers themselves, delivering a handful of lines like reciting snippets of personal ads about likes, best features, nice breasts, and being shy but willing, successfully eliciting more than a few laughs from the audience.

A little surprised by this beginning, and more than a bit thrown off, I couldn’t begin to guess where the performance would lead and when the lights dimmed for the last time, I felt uncertain I had been able to follow Pteros anywhere. Read the rest of this entry »

Review: roadkill

Posted by art On February - 5 - 2010

Part of Harbourfront Centre’s World Stage
Choreographed by Gavin Webber, Grayson Millwood and Sarah-Jayne Howard
February 3–6 @ Enwave Theatre

By Tina Chu

Even without understanding its exploration of agoraphobia and paranoia, I would have felt the same weighted anticipation as the lights dimmed for Splintergroup’s performance of roadkill at Enwave Theatre.

It’s not everyday a dance performance will incorporate a car and a phone booth all in one go. And while the sight of these props on stage was curious enough, seeing performers Gavin Webber, Grayson Millwood, and Gabrielle Nankivell interact with them was something the word curious cannot even begin to describe. Read the rest of this entry »

Review: Public Realm at Propeller

Posted by art On January - 29 - 2010

Public Realm
Curated by Christopher Hume
Featuring work by Ian Amell, Broken City Lab, Eric Cheung + Sean Martindale, Desire, Rocky Dobey, Tina Edan, Christine Elson, Doug Geldart, Helena Grdadolnik + David Colussi, Josh Hite, Tyler Hodgins, Stuart Keeler, Mark Krawczynski, Marissa Largo + Sean Bennell + Daniel Pierre, Frances Patella, Allison Rowe, Kevin Scanlon, Laura St. Pierre
January 20-31 @ Propeller Centre for the Visual Arts

Review and photographs by Tina Chu
(MONDO does not hold the rights to the original images.)

What first drew me to The Propeller’s latest exhibit was an image of Eric Cheung and Sean Martindale’s Poster Pocket Plants. The last time I’d encountered these plants was around the corner from Bathurst and Harbord. Seeing the works in a new context required a follow-up.

Curated by Christopher Hume, Public Realm turned out to be a noteworthy exhibition of interventions into, meditations on and proposals for public space. Read the rest of this entry »



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