Yvonne Chartrand

Last updated: May 29, 2024

Yvonne Chartrand is a choreographer and dancer as well as a national award-winning master Métis jigger. Her ancestors come from the Mitchif (Métis) community of St. Laurent, Manitoba. In 2000, she co-founded V’ni Dansi (“come and dance” in Mitchif) where she continues to act as Artistic Director. Yvonne’s Métis dance work was passed to her through many Métis Elders; she is one of the only people in Canada who holds this traditional knowledge. As a cultural keeper, Yvonne is dedicated to preserving traditional Métis dance in Canada.

Her contemporary works are always informed by her Métis identity. As a contemporary dance choreographer, she has conceptualized and co-choreographed company group works: A Poet and Prophet 2003, Gabriel’s Crossing 2004, and The Crossing 2006. Her first full-length dance-theatre work Cooking It Up Métis 2013 created for young audiences.

Yvonne’s solo work includes Marguerite in 2000, inspired by the lives of the Métis Women who endured the Resistances, Stories from St. Laurent, 2009. Her mentor Robin Poitras created the commissioned solo Sara Riel: The Long Journey 2014 with Edward Poitras. Her solo Eagle Spirit premiered in Vancouver at V’ni Dansi’s annual Louis Riel Day Celebration, 2016. In 2022, her collaboration with Rulan Tangen of Santa Fe’s Dancing Earth, La Mitchin di Mitchif, premiered in Vancouver. In 2023 she was honoured to choreograph the opera, Li Keur: Riel’s Heart of the North for the Manitoba Opera in Winnipeg.

Yvonne was awarded a 2011 Victor Martyn Lynch-Staunton Award from the Canada Council for the Arts.

Upcoming events

  1. In-person Video

    A love story, a historical epic, and a celebration of Métis song and dance, You used to call me Marie… brings to life the stories of the Callihoo women in Alberta. Music fills the air, and ponies dance as Marie…