NAC is extending performance and event cancellations and postponements until June 14

News & Updates

  • March 2020

  • March 24, 2020

    COVID-19 Update

    To help flatten the curve on the unprecedented COVID-19 pandemic, National Creation Fund staff are working remotely and are reachable by e-mail. Please visit About Us for full contact information. 

    The coming days and weeks will bring tough challenges. We ask that everyone take care and stay healthy.

  • March 12, 2020

    Revisor, Crystal Pite and Jonathon Young, Sadler’s Wells, review: a nightmarish, beautiful, mind-blowing journey

    In 2015, the Canadian duo of contemporary choreographer Crystal Pite and dramatist Jonathon Young, together with Pite’s company Kidd Pivot, unleashed their new show Betroffenheit. A borderline-genius study of bereavement, inspired by a horrific personal tragedy – Young’s losing his daughter and her two cousins in a fire – it was one of those once-in-a-blue-moon shows that felt genuinely unimprovable.

    In the wake of that, and with Pite continuing to deliver one first-class work after another in the interim, hopes were almost... Read more

  • March 12, 2020

    Revisor review – astonishing take on Gogol demands to be seen again

    Actors speak, dancers move. In Revisor, choreographer Crystal Pite and theatre-maker Jonathon Young once again sync their worlds together. As with the searing Betroffenheit and wire-taut The Statement, Revisor finds Pite’s phenomenal dancers performing a kind of physical lip-syncing to scripted voiceovers by Young’s actors. The result is astonishing not for its imitation, but for its exactitude: the rhythms and intonations of speech drive every gesture, stance and step. Choreographically, it’s riveting, both for the inventive... Read more

  • February 2020

  • February 27, 2020

    The reinvention of 1911 opera Treemonisha

    A powerful collaboration is the driving force behind bringing new life to Treemonisha, Scott Joplin's groundbreaking 1911 opera. Filmmaker: April Aliermo

    Source: CBC Arts, Exhibitionists

  • February 24, 2020

    Le Devisement du monde: Première théâtrale très attendue à Québec

    Article in French only 

    Le dramaturge Kevin McCoy a toujours été fasciné par la quête de l’explorateur Marco Polo. Non seulement par son long périple sur la Route de la soie, mais aussi par la relation qu’il entretenait avec son père. Dans sa plus récente création théâtrale intitulée Le Devisement du monde, il dresse un parallèle avec sa propre histoire.

    À mi-chemin entre la fiction et l’autobiographie, cette nouvelle pièce sera présentée en première mondiale au Diamant du 11 au 20 février, ainsi qu’en triptyque (nommé Le... Read more

  • January 2020

  • January 29, 2020

    The Invisible: Agents of Ungentlemanly Warfare musical by Catalyst features unlikely spies

    An Indian princess, a wealthy American who lost her lower leg in a shooting accident, and a Miss Moneypenny prototype. These three women — spies in the Second World War — have been roiling through Jonathan Christenson’s imagination for the past two years.

    Now characters based on the three (and four more equally intriguing personalities) are set to land on the stage as Christenson’s latest musical, The Invisible: Agents of Ungentlemanly Warfare, debuts Feb. 4 at the Maclab.

    A production of Christenson’s dynamic and... Read more

  • January 27, 2020

    La soif de l’absolu

    Article in French only 

    Après avoir été présentée dans le cadre du Festival TransAmériques (FTA), voilà que la pièce Soifs matériaux est reprise à l’Espace GO. Ce sont vingt acteurs et six musiciens qui seront sur les planches dans cette saga contemporaine, dont la tête d’affiche Anne-Marie Cadieux, pour porter la parole de l’auteure Marie-Claire Blais et véhiculer des valeurs de compassion tout en démontrant une très grande soif de vivre.

    Anne-Marie Cadieux, qui à l’instar de 20 comédiens dont Dominique Quesnel, Christiane... Read more

  • January 27, 2020

    NCF: Le Devisement du monde: Première théâtrale très attendue à Québec

    Article in French Only 

    Le dramaturge Kevin McCoy a toujours été fasciné par la quête de l’explorateur Marco Polo. Non seulement par son long périple sur la Route de la soie, mais aussi par la relation qu’il entretenait avec son père. Dans sa plus récente création théâtrale intitulée Le Devisement du monde, il dresse un parallèle avec sa propre histoire.

    À mi-chemin entre la fiction et l’autobiographie, cette nouvelle pièce sera présentée en première mondiale au Diamant du 11 au 20 février, ainsi qu’en triptyque (nommé Le... Read more

  • January 24, 2020

    Daina Ashbee Kicks off 2020 with Big News!

    Two World Premieres and a Major Financing Partner!

    J'ai pleuré avec les chiens

    The National Arts Centre’s National Creation Fund has just announced their support for Daina Ashbee’s J’ai pleuré avec les chiens, a full-evening work for an intergenerational cast of 5 female performers. This first group piece represents an important next step for this award-winning artist (Prix de la Danse de Montréal, Bessie Award for Outstanding “Breakout” Choreographer) and nurtures her evolution as one of Montreal’s most unique dance... Read more

  • January 23, 2020

    A ‘Mahabharata’ Staged and Acted Entirely by South Asians—Why Not?

    Adapting the Sanskrit epic into two-part spectacle for the Shaw Festival, Ravi Jain goes back to the beginning—and imagines the end.

    Audiences in the West know the Indian epic the Mahabharata, if they know it at all, via Peter Brook and Jean-Claude Carrière’s groundbreaking nine-hour stage adaptation, originally staged in France in 1985, then in Brooklyn in 1987, and finally filmed in 1989. Billed as an “international” production, it had a multiracial cast and toured widely around the world, but it was unavoidably and... Read more

  • January 23, 2020

    Skyborn is a spiritual voyage for Quelemia Sparrow

    A soul canoe is a sacred vessel that no one else but you can travel in.

    The sacred vessel is what transports your immortal soul through eternity on a universal river made of stars. It can also retrieve it when it wanders during times of sickness or healing. Belief in this ancestral ritual is deeply held in the Musqueam culture. It isn’t typically shared publicly.

    In Skyborn: A Land Reclamation Odyssey, Musqueam artist Quelemia Sparrow invites us to be witnesses to a soul-canoe voyage to reclaim her lost soul from the land of... Read more

  • January 20, 2020

    Quelemia Sparrow’s Skyborn: A Land Reclamation Odyssey is a spirit journey

    Art leads, again.

    Politics, language, history: all play a part in playwright and actor Quelemia Sparrow’s Skyborn: A Land Recla­mation Odyssey, but this innovative interdisciplinary undertaking began with time for quiet reflection, dreaming, and the act of putting pen to paper.

    As the part-Musqueam, part-settler artist tells the Straight in a wide-ranging telephone conversation from her Kerrisdale home, her new play began some years ago, when she embarked on a writing retreat on the Sunshine Coast. There, Sparrow says, she... Read more

  • January 17, 2020

    Live sound, walls of light, and pummelling dance mix in Animals of Distinction's multimedia Frontera

    Choreographer Dana Gingras’s previous work at the PuSh International Performing Arts Festival featured frantic urbanites convulsing atop stark-white pedestals. Part of the rush of watching the Holy Body Tattoo’s monumental in 2016 came from seeing what the performers could pull off on their precarious perches. Now, in Frontera, another massively scaled multimedia show at the Queen Elizabeth Theatre by Gingras’s more recent company Animals of Distinction, 10 performers will dart and dodge between columns of light.

    Right from... Read more

  • January 17, 2020

    Inuit myths brought to life on the national stage

    As the lights dimmed in the Ottawa’s National Arts Centre theatre on Friday, Jan. 10, a woman’s voice began to speak softly in Inuktitut. Projected through speakers, her words floated through the audience. The voice took on an echo as stars began to illuminate the onstage video screen. In the background, the wind whistled and breaking ice cracked.

    It was the start of an otherworldly performance. Over the next hour and a half, Unikkaaqtuat brought Inuit myths to life on the southern stage.

    A blend of circus, theatre, music... Read more

  • January 13, 2020

    «Unikkaaqtuat»: histoires anciennes pour temps nouveau

    Article in French Only 

    La première saison du Théâtre autochtone du Centre national des arts se poursuit avec Unikkaaqtuat (« Histoires des temps anciens », en français), un spectacle né d’une collaboration interculturelle (et manifestement fertile) entre Artcirq, compagnie de cirque inuite, Les 7 Doigts, collectif circassien québécois, et Taqqut Productions, compagnie de production cinématographique inuite.

    Mis en scène par Neil Christopher, Patrick Léonard, Guillaume Ittukssarjuat Saladin et Terence Uyarak, le spectacle... Read more

  • January 13, 2020

    Review: Combining circus spectacle and Inuit myth, Unikkaaqtuat both stuns and stumbles

    In the most startling scene of the new circus-theatre hybrid Unikkaaqtuat, an Arctic ice floe, as comically overloaded as a clown car, tips, and the men and women crowded onto it suddenly topple, terrifyingly, into the frigid sea.

    Underwater, two women (Charlotte Qamaniq and Christine Tootoo) float upside down - they’re actually swinging from hanging fabric – and throat sing in what sounds like a melancholy acceptance of their fate.

    But another woman (Marjorie Nantel) fights her drowning in a desperate, struggling acrobatic... Read more

  • January 9, 2020

    Unikkaaqtuat : quand le Nord débarque au Sud

    Article in French only 

    La mythologie inuit regorge de mythes et légendes qui ont traversé les territoires et les époques. Si plusieurs ont fini par être oubliées ou étouffées par des mythes plus contemporains, une dizaine de ces histoires reprendront vie sur la scène du Centre national des arts (CNA) à Ottawa jeudi.

    « Ce à quoi vous assistez est très fragile dans notre monde moderne », dit d’entrée de jeu Guillaume Saladin, du collectif Artcirq.  

    Nous sommes une cinquantaine de personnes réunies dans une petite salle de... Read more

  • January 9, 2020

    Unikkaaqtuat brings Inuit stories to a wider world

    Guillaume Ittukssarjuat Saladin has a suggestion for audiences attending the upcoming world premiere of Unikkaaqtuat (meaning to tell stories), an all-ages show which opens the second half of NAC Indigenous Theatre’s inaugural season. The cross-cultural production fuses circus, theatre, music and video, spotlights Inuit artists and is rendered mostly in Inuktitut.

    “In the south, we always try to understand,” says Saladin, a Montreal-area circus artist and co-creator of/performer in the show. “Now you have a chance to be lost... Read more

  • January 8, 2020

    For Guillaume Côté, the road to his ballet Crypto runs right through Alma

    Guillaume Côté had this idea see.

    “For a long time I have wanted to do something that is narrative, something that is new and fiction,” the principal dancer and associate choreographer of the National Ballet of Canada.

    “About two years I had this dinner with (the filmmaker and opera director) Atom Egoyan and I asked if he would be willing to do something like this with me.”

    Egoyan said he’d like to collaborate but he also said that there was another Canadian who might be better suited to work on a ballet libretto.

    “He said... Read more

  • December 2019

  • December 3, 2019

    Entrevue avec Dana Gingras Frontera : projet chorégraphique collaboratif engagé

    Article in French only 

    Après Monumental en 2017, Dana Gingras, chorégraphe, danseuse et vidéaste est de retour à la Place des Arts avec un autre spectacle d’envergure : FRONTERA. FRONTERA signifie frontière, limite, bordure, un thème que l’artiste visuelle exploite grâce à l’appui du Centre de Création O Vertigo (CCOV) avec 10 danseurs, le collectif United Visual Artists et le groupe de musique montréalais Fly Pan Am. La première du spectacle est ce mercredi 4 décembre. a sauté sur l’opportunité de discuter avec... Read more

  • November 2019

  • November 21, 2019

    Margaret Grenier on Dancers of Damelahamid, “Mînowin,” and the relationship between Indigenous Art and Indigenous Identity

    Dancers of Damelahamid are back on the Vancouver stage with their newest offering, “Mînowin.” The brand new show explores the process of recovering and re-interpreting Indigenous teachings over multiple generations, through story, dance, and music. The show’s choreographer, and Executive and Artistic Director of the dance company, Margaret Grenier, is also performing in this production.

    In addition to her work with Dancers of Damelahamid, Margaret has also produced and directed the annual Coastal First Nations Dance Festival... Read more

  • November 15, 2019

    A jazzy insect finds its muse in Kid Koala's The Storyville Mosquito

    “The mosquito is kind of a universally despised creature,” Eric San acknowledged. “If we can build some empathy for a mosquito, I think we’re alright.”

    He is willing to give it the old college try. The Montreal DJ, animator and all-around entertainer better known as Kid Koala has built a wildly eclectic career by following his creative whims. His various projects are based on far-fetched concepts that really shouldn’t work out yet somehow turn into ridiculously good times.

    Back in the ‘90s, Kid Koala used to win contests... Read more

  • September 2019

  • September 25, 2019

    Dance Preview: Minowin by Dancers of Damelahamid at the NAC

    British Columbia’s Dancers of Damelahamid ventures to the National Arts Centre September 26th through 28th with their program Mînowin. The Indigenous dance company celebrates storytelling, dance, and tradition with a contemporary refiguring.

    I had the opportunity to sit down with Margaret Grenier, Executive and Artistic Director of the company, and Andrew Grenier, Creative Producer, ahead of their show.

    The company works to incorporate both traditional and contemporary aspects of dance. Margaret Grenier said, “our company is... Read more

  • © Adrian Morillo September 25, 2019

    Le disque par la danse

    Article is in French 

    « À l’époque, il n’y avait personne d’entre nous qui savait vraiment comment faire de la musique électronique », laisse échapper Roger Tellier-Craig. À l’époque, c’était en 1999, à la sortie du premier album du groupe chez Constellation, l’étiquette qui nous avait déjà donné Do May Say Think, Exhaust et, surtout, Godspeed You ! Black Emperor. C’était avant l’Internet à haute vitesse, à l’orée de la crise du disque, rappelle le musicien, « à l’époque où on croyait être les seuls en ville à faire ce genre... Read more

  • September 18, 2019

    La danse chorale de Mélanie Demers

    Article in French Only

    Tout a commencé par une vision esthétique née de l’esprit de la chorégraphe Mélanie Demers. Se sont ajoutés deux danseurs d’ici (Francis Ducharme, Riley Sims) et surtout trois appropriations artistiques consenties signées Kettly Noël depuis Bamako, Ann Van den Broek à Rotterdam et Ann Liv Young de New York. Le résultat ? Danse mutante, un ambitieux relais chorégraphique aux influences multiples opposant création et destruction, évolution et révolution, qui se pose ces jours-ci à Montréal.

    Si on peut... Read more

  • July 2019

  • July 24, 2019


    By: Lorenzo Gee

    From becoming a world-renowned scratch DJ to award-winning graphic novelist, Kid Koala’s level of creativity is inspiring. He’s toured with Tribe Called Quest, the Beastie Boys, DJ Shadow, collaborated with Del, the Gorillaz, composed music for video games, film, and much more. With the premiere of his live film, The Storyville Mosquito set for November of this year, I got in contact with him to learn more about the upcoming show along with some... Read more

  • July 15, 2019

    The first woman accused of witchcraft in Salem was an enslaved Caribbean. This opera tells her story

    By: Lucius Dechausay

    You may have seen Obeah Opera's world premiere at Luminato a few weeks ago, but if you know about its decade long journey to get to that stage, you may think creator and composer Nicole Brooks conjured up some Black girl magic.

    "It's taken ten years to really get the vision and the complete version up on its feet," says Brooks. "My soul is not going to rest until this piece becomes what it is supposed to be." It began with a ten-minute performance workshopped at bcurrent, expanding on the story of... Read more

  • July 2, 2019

    Les 7 doigts coproduisent un spectacle au Nunavut

    Article in French Only

    By: Jean Siag 

    Près d'une dizaine d'artistes inuits se produiront à Iqaluit aujourd'hui dans le cadre du festival Alianait. Une occasion rêvée pour ces musiciens et artistes de cirque du Nord de faire partager leur culture. Le spectacle sera d'ailleurs présenté au Centre national des arts d'Ottawa en janvier prochain avant d'entamer une tournée canadienne.

    Unikkaaqtuat (Nos légendes en français) a été mis en scène par Patrick Léonard, des 7 doigts, avec la contribution du collectif Artcirq et des... Read more

  • June 2019

  • June 17, 2019

    Luminato brings a new version of the a cappella telling of the Salem Witch trials to Toronto

    By: Wayne Leung 

    Obeah Opera tells the story of the Salem witch trials from the perspective of the first woman accused: a Caribbean slave named Tituba. Sung through entirely a cappella, the latest incarnation of this surprisingly vibrant and uplifting show is currently presented in Toronto as part of the Luminato Festival.

    Like most people, I’m most familiar with the Salem witch trials and the character of Tituba from Arthur Miller’s play The Crucible.Miller’s play and indeed most of the written history of that period... Read more

  • June 12, 2019

    Director Kim Collier brings the power of film on stage in new play, The Full Light of Day

    Produced by:  ​Emma Godmere

    Kim Collier is an award-winning director and founding member of Vancouver's Electric Company Theatre, which is pushing the technological envelope once again with its new production, The Full Light of Day.

    With 14 cameras rigged to different parts of the set, the play blurs the lines between film and theatre. The cameras capture close-ups of the actors on stage and project them onto walls and curtains to make the audience feel closer to the story, as if they were watching a movie.
    Eye-popping new... Read more

  • June 10, 2019

    It was the first all-African American opera. And now, Treemonisha is getting new life

    Scott Joplin's groundbreaking 1911 opera is finally getting the reinvention it deserves

    By: Lise Hosein 

    In 1911, ragtime composer Scott Joplin wrote the opera Treemonisha. It was one of two operas he wrote during his lifetime, and it was important in a way that, over 100 years later, we still recognize — as the National Arts Centre puts it, "Treemonisha is one of the few surviving live performance pieces about the immediate post-slavery era written by a Black person who actually lived through it."

    But Joplin did not have... Read more

  • June 7, 2019

    Shaw Festival to see major mounting of Sanskrit epic The Mahabharata from Why Not Theatre


    Three decades after British director Peter Brook's version of the The Mahabharatatook the Western theatre world by storm, Toronto's Why Not Theatre is teaming up with the Shaw Festival to create a major new stage adaptation of the ancient Sanskrit epic poem featuring a cast from the South Asian diaspora, The Globe and Mail has learned.

    Fuelled by a $375,000 New Chapter grant from the Canada Council, Why Not's production will be the biggest ever mounted by the accomplished independent theatre company –... Read more

  • June 5, 2019

    Illuminating Thoughts: Nicole Brooks on Obeah Opera

    Ten years ago she was told it could never be done — it was too big, too unconventional, too diverse, too much about women — now, artist Nicole Brooks is reveling in the success of her creation, Obeah Opera. 

    By: Nicole Brooks

    Revolutionary creator Nicole Brooks shares her inspiration for Obeah Opera, the importance of purely vocal storytelling, and how she believes art can go beyond "edutainment" and give voice to the voiceless.

    Tell us about the journey of you went on to get the original concept of Obeah Opera to what will... Read more

  • June 4, 2019

    The ‘invisible women’ of World War II are celebrated in a stylish new musical at Calgary’s Vertigo Theatre

    By: Stephen Hunt 

    Title: The Invisible – Agents of Ungentlemanly Warfare
    Written by: Book, music and lyrics by Jonathan Christenson
    Venue: At the Vertigo Theatre in Calgary

    The title of Catalyst Theatre’s muscular new musical – Invisible! Agents! Warfare! – sounds vaguely Marvelesque, and really what’s not to like about that?

    The Invisible – Agents of Ungentlemanly Warfare, which had its world premiere Thursday night in Calgary, stirs up echoes of a few of the better recent superhero screen stories, as it tells – in its own... Read more

  • June 4, 2019

    Old Trouts Prove There’s Nothing They Can’t Do

    By Lori Montgomery

    After seeing the Old Trouts’ latest show, Ghost Opera, part of me wondered — what on earth took them so long to create an opera? Their previous shows (among them The Ice King and The Unlikely Birth of Istvan) are operatic in theme and scale, and in retrospect were crying out for a barrel-chested tenor. In typical Trouts fashion, this show throws the form into a cocktail mixer and shakes it up until it’s barely recognizable, but make no mistake — this is serious opera. 

    From the first discordant, ominous... Read more

  • June 4, 2019

    SOIFS Matériaux: aux portes de l'Enfer

    By: Luc Boulanger
    French only 

    SOIFS, l'impressionnant cycle romanesque de Marie-Claire Blais, est une oeuvre monumentale qu'on imagine mal résonner au théâtre. Cette écriture abondante, haletante, déferle sur notre ineffable condition humaine, comme la mer en allée. Il y a quelque chose de proustien dans ce souffle inépuisable, unique, et purement littéraire.

    Et pourtant, ce beau fouillis de mots, sans chapitres ni paragraphes, avec pratiquement pas de ponctuation fait l'objet d'un spectacle-fleuve, SOIFS Matériaux, créé au... Read more

  • June 3, 2019

    Reinventing the wondrous world of Marie-Claire Blais in SOIFS Matériaux


    Over the years UBU has often created plays based on works not written for the stage. How does this novel by Marie-Claire Blais fit into that approach?

    Denis Marleau – What was appealing about Soifs was its vigorous writing, its larger-than-life scope, its embrace of a kaleidoscopic vision of the world and its human depth. Given the work of the actors and all that theatre can set in motion, we wanted to be attuned to the author’s unique phrasing. Marie-Claire Blais’ writing shifts from one character to another along... Read more

  • May 2019

  • May 21, 2019

    After life: Old Trout Puppet Workshop tackle the ghosts in new opera

    By Eric Volmers

    Judd Palmer and his cohorts at The Old Trout Puppet Workshop always ask a preliminary question before setting out to design and produce a new show.

    Why is this a puppet show?

    Given that the Calgary company is one of the country’s most prominent puppet theatres, the answer could be painfully obvious. But Palmer says the Old Trouts have never looked for easy answers.

    “The answer that we don’t find acceptable is: ‘Well, because we’re a puppet company, that’s what we do,’ ” says Palmer. “We always want it to be... Read more

  • May 14, 2019

    Preview: Vertigo's The Invisible shines light on brave female spies

    By Louis B. Hobson

    Imagine a musical about Britain’s MI6 spy agency in which Miss Moneypenny gets top billing and James Bond is a character talked about rather than seen.

    That’s essentially what Jonathan Christenson has done in his musical The Invisible: Age of Ungentlemanly Warfare, which has its official world premiere at Vertigo Theatre May 11 to June 9.

    Christenson and his Edmonton company Catalyst Theatre collaborated with Vertigo Theatre in 2011 on Nevermore, an homage to Edgar Allan Poe, which became an international... Read more

  • May 3, 2019

    «Introduction à la violence»: habiter ses rêves

    Critique en français

    By: Christian Saint-Pierre

    Reprenant pour notre plus grand plaisir le fil de sa démarche solo, Marie Brassard dévoile en ce moment à l’Usine C le premier segment d’un nouveau cycle : Introduction à la violence. Avec cet objet singulier, d’un onirisme débordant, à même de susciter l’enchantement aussi bien que l’angoisse, le réconfort aussi certainement que le vertige, la directrice de la compagnie Infrarouge nous accorde un privilège, celui d’entrer dans une oeuvre en cours d’élaboration ; un territoire... Read more

  • May 1, 2019

    Marie Brassard dans l’antre de la création

    Article en français

    Par: Marie Labrecque

    Six années ont passé depuis son précédent solo, Trieste. Après diverses « aventures passionnantes », telle la mise en scène de La vie utile à Espace Go, Marie Brassard revient à ce qui forme le coeur de sa démarche artistique : la création indépendante. « Pour moi, c’est comme un événement, le retour à mon travail personnel. » Pour nous aussi.

    L’auteure de Jimmy, créature de rêve offre à l’Usine C le premier volet d’un vaste projet qui va être élaboré au cours de l’année à... Read more

  • April 2019

  • 4 April 29, 2019

    Live in the Studio: Visiting the Old Trout Puppet Workshop

    By: Vanessa Porteous

    To reach Calgary’s Old Trout Puppet Workshop, you knock on the door of an unprepossessing Quonset hut, squeeze through the lean-to they use for an office, then finally set foot inside the studio, where an otherworldly vibe possesses you. Puppets gaze down from every corner, ghosts from the past. Despite the chainsaws and Styrofoam, somehow the ambiance is marvelous in the most old-fashioned sense. An aged sheen burnishes the rows of sorrowing faces and supplicating hands laid out on tables all around.
    ... Read more

  • April 12, 2019

    Arcade Fire members score Peggy Baker dance show at NAC

    There’s dance music and there’s dance music.

    Arcade Fire has flirted with funkier sounds on its last couple albums, but band members Sarah Neufeld and Ottawa’s Jeremy Gara up the ante with Who We Are In the Dark, their new collaboration with Canadian contemporary dance icon Peggy Baker, opening Friday at the National Arts Centre.

    “I met Sarah in the fall of 2015,” said Baker. “I had been invited to make a solo for the inaugural performance of the Fall For Dance North, in Toronto. I had retired as a soloist five years... Read more

  • April 9, 2019

    No fear: Into the dark with Peggy Baker

    By Peter Robb

    When you light a candle, you also cast a shadow.”
    ― Ursula K. Le Guin

    For the legendary Canadian dance artist Peggy Baker, the idea of creating a work called who we are in the dark was full of meaning, both metaphysical and deeply personal.

    The idea sprang out of a 2015 project called Fractured Black that she created with the Arcade Fire violinist Sarah Neufeld.

    Baker had been approached by a Toronto dance festival and asked if she wanted to dance a solo. Baker had not danced professionally since 2010. Even... Read more

  • April 4, 2019

    «Revisor»: les faussaires de leur propre jeu

    Review in French 

    Mélanie Carpentier


    Avec Betroffenheit (2015), la chorégraphe Crystal Pite et le dramaturge Jonathon Young jetaient les bases d’un solide procédé faisant s’interpénétrer brillamment danse et théâtre. Transformant le texte dramatique en une véritable matière chorégraphique, les deux créateurs usent des mêmes ficelles pour Revisor, pièce où neuf danseurs se glissent dans la peau et les costumes des personnages du Revizor de Nicolas Gogol.

    L’intrigue tourne autour du « Réviseur », personnage... Read more

  • April 3, 2019

    Who We are in the Dark : Dans une nuit profonde

    Review in French only

    Par Guylaine Massoutre

    On ne s’attendait pas à voir associer les noms d’Arcade Fire et de Peggy Baker, sur la scène du théâtre Maisonneuve, dans une chorégraphie de la très précise, très douée, aussi technique que sensible. C’est pourtant la seconde fois que Baker, avec la complicité de ses interprètes, crée étroitement avec la compositrice Sara Neufeld, violoniste du groupe Arcade Fire, qui lui a inspiré le titre de cette pièce, Who We are in the Dark.

    La pièce est intensément dramatique. Y sont... Read more

  • March 2019


    an army of critters! plus magnets #TheStoryvilleMosquito

    A post shared by TheStoryvilleMosquito (@the_storyville_mosquito) on

  • March 9, 2019

    Was Betroffenheit just lightning in a bottle? Revisor proves it wasn’t

    With 2015’s Betroffenheit, choreographer Crystal Pite and actor Jonathon Young turned personal tragedy into breathtaking art. Ask anyone lucky enough to snag a ticket; they’ll likely say the Dora and Olivier Award-winning production is still seared into their minds.

    The question before Revisor, Pite’s and Young’s new collaboration, opened this week was if the same electricity could be captured without a back story as impactful as the death of Young’s daughter in a fire. Pite and Young have proven that Betroffenheit wasn’t... Read more

  • March 6, 2019

    Stress and Happiness, 24 Hours a Day - Vanessa Porteous Talks to the Creators of Counting Sheep

    “It was easy and hard at the same time,” says Marichka Marczyk about the reboot of Counting Sheep: Staging A Revolution, a music theatre hybrid that plunges its audience into the 2014 ‘Revolution of Dignity’ in Kyiv, Ukraine. Co-creator Mark Marczyk, Marichka’s partner in life and work, agrees. “It was stress and happiness,” he says, “twenty-four hours a day.”

    Since its premiere at the SummerWorks Festival in Toronto in 2015, Counting Sheep has garnered raves worldwide. This 2019 version is a full transformation, with new... Read more


    puppet designer @realpatrickmartel sculpting spider #TheStoryvilleMosquito

    A post shared by TheStoryvilleMosquito (@the_storyville_mosquito) on


    before the clay dries... about to pour some molds for #TheStoryvilleMosquito @the_storyville_mosquito

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  • February 2019

  • February 25, 2019

    Kidd Pivot's remarkable Revisor more than lives up to expectations

    At its world premiere in Vancouver last night, Kidd Pivot’s Revisor had enough electricity to blow out the substation down the street at Cathedral Square.

    It helped that Crystal Pite—basically the hottest choreographer on the planet right now—had, along with her cocreator Jonathon Young, drawn out a hugely supportive hometown crowd. Adding to the excitement was a small army of European, Asian, and South American presenters, in town for the first Vancouver International Dance Showcase.

    With all the attention came high... Read more

  • February 14, 2019

    Crystal Pite and Jonathon Young return to the stage with Revisor

    Betroffenheit is a German word that refers to the state of shock that follows an unspeakable trauma. It is also the name of one of the most stunning, lauded pieces of theatre to come out of Canada in recent memory. Co-created by Vancouver-based choreographer Crystal Pite and Toronto-based playwright Jonathon Young (who also starred in it), Betroffenheit got four stars and a rave (“rare and staggering”) from Martha Schabas at The Globe and Mail. International reviewers lauded it. In Britain, it won a prestigious Olivier Award... Read more

  • February 6, 2019

    In Revisor, Crystal Pite and Jonathon Young dive ever deeper into dance-theatre meld

    Betroffenheit ranks as one of Vancouver’s biggest stage success stories - touring the globe for two years, eliciting rave reviews, and earning a coveted 2017 Olivier Award in London.

    Now, in one of the most anticipated new shows of 2019, choreographer Crystal Pite and actor-writer Jonathon Young are back with Revisor. Tellingly, its world premiere here sold out months ago.

    Whereas Betroffenheit mined personal tragedy - a devastating loss in Young’s own family - Revisor takes a less autobiographical direction and plays with... Read more

  • February 5, 2019

    National Creation Fund - Our First Annual Report

    We are delighted to share with you the National Creation Fund’s Annual Report.  In our first year of operation, the Fund invested a total of almost $3 million in 19 bold and ambitious projects in Music, Theatre, Dance and Interdisciplinary Performing Arts – among the most exciting works being produced in Canada today.

    These 19 projects were chosen from the 127 submitted in the Fund’s first year.  As you can read in our report, the Fund’s reach is truly national, with projects received from every region of the country.

    2019... Read more

  • January 2019

  • January 30, 2019

    Counting Sheep: A Revolution Comes to Waterloo

    Immersive gig-theatre show Counting Sheep was a smash hit when it debuted in Edinburgh in 2017, winning both a Fringe First and the Amnesty International award. It stunned audiences with its boisterous and vivid depiction of the Ukrainian protests in 2014, which led to countless deaths as the nation felt the effects of (still ongoing) Russian expansionism.

    The piece now comes to London to headline the VAULT Festival, with the added twist that a new directorial team of Natalia Kaliada and Nicolai Khalezin from Belarus Free... Read more

  • January 8, 2019

    Electric Company Theatre draws modern tragedy into The Full Light of Day

    The Full Light of Day will rank as one of the most epic-scale plays staged in Vancouver in 2019. Featuring 14 live-streaming cameras and projections, the new Electric Company Theatre production features an all-star cast led by Gabrielle Rose, an array of technologies, and a series of short, virtual-reality films that screen in the lobby.

    In 2016, Electric Company director Kim Collier scored a $280,000 New Chapter grant—a one-time project fund from the Canada Council to mark the 150th anniversary of Confederation—to stage... Read more

  • January 7, 2019

    Can a 108-year-old opera - by Scott Joplin - be made to sing for today?

    The themes that composer Scott Joplin was exploring in his masterwork “Treemonisha” — feminism and black aspiration — struck Leah-Simone Bowen as so ahead of their time that the opportunity to give them a new context for 21st-century audiences struck her as impossible to pass up.

    “That it’s essentially a conversation within an African community,” the playwright said. “That it’s about a black woman leading — and that she’s chosen to lead? It’s really subversive.”

    And that these ideas were planted in a musical piece 108 years... Read more

  • December 2018

  • December 14, 2018

    Light Up 2019 with The Full Light of Day

    Electric Company Theatre’s new production The Full Light of Day will be on stage at the Vancouver Playhouse from January 7 to 12.  Read the latest about this innovative film/theatre hybrid, and the collection of short films shot in 360° Virtual Reality by Governor-General's award winner Kevin Kerr that will complement the stage production.

    If you can’t attend the Vancouver premiere, The Full Light of Day will also be on stage at the Bluma Appel Theatre in Toronto in June, presented by Canadian Stage and Luminato.
    ... Read more

  • December 14, 2018

    Crystal Pite’s Next Story: Revisor Takes Shape in Vancouver

    Back home in Vancouver last June, Crystal Pite received an honorary doctor of fine arts degree from Simon Fraser University. At the ceremony, the dean of the Faculty of Communication, Art and Technology, Aoife MacNamara, introduced Pite as “an internationally renowned Canadian choreographer, whose works are sought by some of the world’s best dance companies, including the Paris Opera Ballet and the Royal Ballet.” MacNamara noted the work Pite choreographed in 2014 for SFU dance students, Singularity, performed at the... Read more

  • December 4, 2018

    The Hockey Sweater: Building a better musical with a little help from the National Creation Fund

    What happens when an existing show suddenly gets $200,000 in funding for expansion and fine-tuning?

    If it’s The Hockey Sweater: A Musical, very good things occur, according to the show’s co-writers Emil Sher and Jonathan Munro.

    The musical is an adaptation of Roch Carrier’s beloved short story about young Roch, whose universe is knocked sideways when he mistakenly receives a Maple Leafs sweater from Eaton’s instead of a Habs No. 9 jersey, like Maurice Richard’s.

    The show is a Segal Centre production. It premiered in... Read more

  • November 2018

  • November 30, 2018

    NAC's Creation Fund: $2.9 million invested in 19 projects

    Nineteen performing arts projects have been funded to the tune of more than $2.9 million by the National Arts Centre’s National Creation Fund in its first year of operation.

    The fund was established by the NAC as a way to help promising performing arts projects get to a bigger stage be that a national or international one. In a media release, the NAC says the fund invests up to $3 million a year in 15 to 20 Canadian works in theatre, dance, music and inter-disciplinary arts to enhance research and development, workshopping... Read more

  • November 29, 2018

    First Year of the National Creation Fund and Investments in Five New Projects

    In its first year, the National Creation Fund, which helps Canadian artists and arts organizations create ambitious new work, has invested $2,962,000 in 19 projects being developed across the country by some of Canada’s top creators.

    ‘It’s been incredible to see the results from the National Creation Fund come to life over the past year,” said Heather Moore, the Fund’s Artistic Producer. “We are seeing the kind of excellence and innovation that can happen when Canadian artists and arts organizations have the time and... Read more

  • October 2018

  • October 20, 2018

    The Full Light of Day at the Banff Centre

    A performance about money, capitalism, and family; A hybrid of theatre and film; A technological feat. All of these elements come together as Electric Company Theatre’s newest production, The Full Light of Day, emerges from the shadows this winter for a production residency at Banff Centre before its premiere at the Vancouver Playhouse in January 2019 followed by a run at Toronto’s Luminato Festival in June.

    Source:  Banff Centre

  • September 2018

  • Isabelle van Grimde talks about Eve 2050 in The Dance Current

  • September 18, 2018

    Le reste vous le connaissez par le cinéma: Guerre absurde

    Article in French

    Après Olivier Choinière, qui y créait Manifeste de la Jeune-Fille en janvier 2017, un spectacle qui sera d’ailleurs présenté au théâtre Outremont le 5 octobre avant de partir en tournée dans plusieurs villes du Québec, c’est au tour de Christian Lapointe d’accéder enfin à l’Espace Go. Pour ce faire, le metteur en scène a choisi une relecture des Phéniciennes d’Euripide par Martin Crimp, Le reste vous le connaissez par le cinéma, une tragédie loufoque pour 14 interprètes.

    Source: Le devoir
    ... Read more

  • September 17, 2018

    Le reste vous le connaissez par le cinéma : Rires, rage, délire et sang attendent le spectateur

    Article in French

    Oubliez les textes en alexandrin, lourds et pompeux. Le reste vous le connaissez par le cinéma a beau tirer sa source d’une histoire écrite il y a plus de 2 500 ans, cette réécriture de Martin Crimp est résolument moderne.

    Et la traduction qu’en a fait Christian Lapointe est délicieusement québécoise.

    Source: Arp Media

  • September 15, 2018

    Les corps du futur d’Isabelle Van Grimde

    Article in French

    Auteure de la première série Web qui hybride danse et film de science-fiction, Isabelle Van Grimde est devenue une référence en matière d’intégration des technologies numériques dans le milieu de la danse au Québec. Après le lancement du premier volet d’Eve 2050 sur le Web, la chorégraphe invite le spectateur dans son univers utopique grâce à une installation et performance immersive à découvrir à L’Agora de la danse.

    Source: Le Devoir
    ... Read more

  • Rehearsal at the Banff Centre in March. September 11, 2018

    Peggy Baker Workshop at National Ballet School

    Peggy Baker has been working on who we are in the dark, her most ambitious work to date, for nearly two years now.  At the end of August, she again brought together her team of dancers and musicians Sarah Neufeld and Jeremy Gara from Arcade Fire for a week of workshops at the National Ballet School in Toronto.

    Having dedicated time together, far in advance of next February’s premiere, is incredibly valuable for all of the artists involved.  For example, while Sarah and Jeremy have worked with dancers before, this is the first... Read more

  • Eve 2050 2 September 11, 2018

    Upcoming Eve 2050 Installation + Performance

    Following the successful launch of the web series earlier this year, Isabelle van Grimde’s epic triptych Eve 2050 continues with the premiere of part two, an installation and performance that invites each visitor to become one of the many faces of Eve 2050.  Using infrared cameras and interactive panels, audience members will see their image recorded, transformed and broadcast live to all those present.

    Presented in Montreal by Agora de la danse from September 19 to 22, the installation can be viewed on its own, and there are... Read more

  • August workshop at ESPACE GO September 11, 2018

    Le reste vous le connaissez par le cinéma opening at ESPACE GO

    ESPACE GO in Montreal was packed on September 12 for the premiere of Le reste vous le connaissez par le cinéma, a compelling new production by writer and director Christian Lapointe.  With an elaborate set inspired by the conventions of a traditional classroom, and a chorus of young women who become trailblazers, Christian puts a decidedly Quebec contemporary spin on Martin Crimp’s version of the classic tale by Euripides. 

    To bring this large-scale production to the stage, Christian worked with the cast of 14 actors in the... Read more

  • June 2018

  • June 14, 2018

    National Arts Centre Announces First Projects to Receive National Creation Fund Investments

    The National Arts Centre today announced the first nine projects that will be receiving investments totaling $1.4 million from the National Creation Fund, a new initiative that supports the development of bold and ambitious Canadian work in music, theatre, dance and inter-disciplinary performing arts. Read more.

  • December 2016

  • December 1, 2016

    National Arts Centre Announces $25M National Creation Fund

    The National Arts Centre today announced the National Creation Fund, a $25 million fund that will support ambitious new Canadian work in theatre, dance and music by artists and arts organizations across Canada. The National Creation Fund will invest in research and development, workshopping and residencies of significant new works. It will also invest in new work that has had a first run, but that needs to go “back into the lab” before it can be remounted and showcased successfully.  Read more

  • September 2016

  • September 28, 2016

    NAC Unveils $25 Million Fundraising Campaign & $5 Million Gift by Gail Asper

    The National Arts Centre (NAC) today launched a transformative $25 million fundraising campaign to support the creation of new works of Music, Theatre and Dance in collaboration with artists and arts organizations across the country. The campaign is the first-ever in the history of the 47 year-old institution.

     The goal of the NAC’s “Creation Campaign” is to provide a source of venture capital to give artists and arts organizations the time and resources that great work requires, and to help them achieve the kind of... Read more

  • September 19, 2018