The 29th Annual Dancing on the Edge Festival pushes frontiers of contemporary dance, featuring over twenty-five innovative choreographers and involving over eighty dance artists.  From July 6 – 15 2017, Vancouver will host a convergence of Canada’s best dance artists and choreographers, as well as two special performances to open up The Edge with Oath-Midnight Rain from the leading professional modern dance company in China, Beijing Modern Dance Company (BMDC). Oath-Midnight Rain explores Buddhist Samsara, the cycle of death and rebirth and the luminal moment between night and day, between black and white, between ending and beginning. Montreal -based company Helen Simard will close the Festival with their performance of NO FUN, a rockstravaganza and interdisciplinary dance piece based on the music and movement of legendary punk icon Iggy Pop, all part of the 10-day live performance festival.

The 2017 Dancing on the Edge celebrates dance pioneers and risk-takers. For its 29th year, other Edge highlights include seven mixed programs featuring; Sara Porter (Toronto) Sara does a Solo, a fearless account of aging and the reflective mind, being celebrated on both sides of the border, called “soulful”, “urgent” and a “tour de force” by New York presenters; two works by Yvonne Ng/ tiger princess dance projects (Toronto) Zhōng Xīn, a haunting investigation of Ng’s own Singapore-born past and Weave, using a contemporary dance frame work to braid her mother’s life;  Alexandra Elliott Dance/Choreography by Tedd Robinson (Winnipeg) Logarian Rhapsody, an ecstatically unrelenting duet spews whispers of desire, urgency and unattainable need; and Monica Shah/Choreography by Natasha Bakht (Vancouver/Ottawa) Blessed Unrest, a solo work utilizing contemporary expressions of Indian classical dance to explore “blessed unrest.

Rounding out the lineup are new works showcasing some of Vancouver’s finest choreographers including; Les Productions Figlio/Serge Bennathan Contes Cruels (Cruel Tales) an excerpt from a full-length work-in-progress to be presented at the Firehall in May 2018; MascallDance/Jennifer Mascall, multi-award-winning company’s work-in-progress featuring four dancers who will be placed in environments, literally and imaginative, that will change their voice, their rhythm; Cori Caulfield/coriograph theatre The Poets, exploring the musical poetry of Leonard Cohen, David Bowie/Robin Susanto and The Tragically Hip In three separate short works; Chick Snipper, Phasmida & Scorpiones, a physical interpretation of the unique structure, movement patterns, defensive, predatorial habits of two very different insects, the stick insect and the scorpion, who meet up unexpectedly; Daelik but some of us are looking at the stars, explores how we age, how we see the world changes; Deanna Peters/Mutable Subject solo, explores flesh, subjectivity and perception. How do we share our materiality? How is it met by things and other bodies? What does our gaze impose upon embodiment?; Naomi Brand Messages to an Audience, a whimsical and metaphorical look at communication and the relationship between viewer and performer; Julianne Chapple Self Portrait, a study of identity as an ever-changing and imperfect narrative based in memory;It Burns Hot & Fast/Diego Romero & Ileanna Cheladyn It Was/Wasn’t All Worth It: This Piece Contains Violence, a duet that explores the complexities of intimate relationships; Olivia C. Davies Compass, an excerpt from the full-length work Crow’s Nest, grounded in Indigenous women’s experiences of displacement and finding home; Ralph Escamillan Squin, based on the exploration of identity, this work in progress explores dance making through the lens of each aspect of the work: costuming, sound, lighting and choreography; and Emmalena Fredriksson/Arash Khakpour Untitledistance, two dancers who grew up far from here and far from each other tell stories from the past to illuminate their possible imagined individual and collective futures.


The Edge is presenting special events including Best of Dances on Screena screening of selected international, Canadian and local films from the Festival of Recorded Movement and two Dance Dialogue Sessions; Traditional Dance Meets Contemporary Movement and What is Dance Dramaturgy?

EDGE OFF features Co.ERASGA & Pichet Klunchun Dance Company Unwrapping Cultures, bringing together two exceptional male dance artists for their first collaboration: Canada’s own Alvin Erasga Tolentino, and Pichet Klunchun, an outstanding exponent of the Thai classical dance style of Khon, who is known internationally for contemporizing this ancient form; Carnegie Dance Troupe &  Karen Jamieson Dance Metamorphose, a 3 year collaboration with members of the Downtown Eastside community, investigating transformation, creation and imagination through dance; and Kinesis Dance somatheatro’s first part of their trilogy and newest creation ENTRAP.

The festival continues the tradition of placing dance in unusual outdoor settings with by donation site-specific works including Aeriosa Dance Society/Spakwus Slulem Thunderbird Sharing Ceremony, a collaborative performance with Aeriosa Dance and Spakwus Slulem/Eagle Song at its heart. This shared ceremony created by local artists with different cultural traditions journeys from the sandy shores of Stanley Park to the heights of its ancient forest; All Bodies Dance with a new piece In Sights, created and performed by the company, and an exploration of public spaces through the lens of difference and adaptability; LINK Dance Foundation/Gail Lotenberg Why Did the Chicken Cross the Road?, performed at three different intersections in Vancouver; and Mile Zero Dance/Gerry Morita RV There Yet? is a transient dance and music pop up that brings art to the unexpecting.

“Dancing on the Edge, over its 29 year history, has introduced our audiences to the majority of leading BC dance creators.   We encourage audiences to look at dance from a different perspective and venture to the edge with us!  We invite you to sample the richness of contemporary dance from across Canada and afar,” says Festival Producer Donna Spencer.

Full program and show info at DANCINGONTHEEDGE.ORG


Dancing on the Edge – Festival of Contemporary Dance
July 6 – 15, 2017

Tickets & Passes on sale June 2017 at or | 604-689-0926

Tickets: $28/26/24 (regular/student, senior/member)

Passes: 4 show passes ($85) | 6 Show Passes ($120)