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
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
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
Article in French
Figure de référence de la danse moderne au Canada, Peggy Baker pose depuis plusieurs décennies le dialogue corps-instrument à l’avant-scène. Mais bien que la musique occupe une place de choix dans son travail, c’est avant tout par les mots que la créatrice trouve une porte d’entrée vers la création. Née de l’alchimie artistique qui lie la chorégraphe chevronnée à la musicienne de la scène rock alternative Sarah Neufeld, who we are in the dark n’échappe pas à ce procédé. La pièce pour sept danseurs a trouvé... Read more
It was an arranged artistic marriage; two creators of different generations, one a doyenne of contemporary dance, the other an indie rock luminary. But it didn’t take long for Toronto choreographer Peggy Baker and Montreal-based violinist Sarah Neufeld of Arcade Fire and Bell Orchestre renown to discover they were kindred spirits.
Their much anticipated dance-music collaboration, who we are in the dark, opens this week at Canadian Stage before launching a six-city tour that will carry it all the way to Whitehorse.
The seed... Read more
Peggy Baker sits at a table, her hands on her face, her eyes focused on the rehearsal in front of her. The stage manager’s table is organized with scrap paper, Dr. Bronner’s Lavender Organic Hand Sanitizer, knee pads, nuts, candies and chocolates, a box of tissues, Arnica Muscle and Joint Gel, a laptop, a day planner and a Starbucks reusable cup. She watches a company of dancers as they finish a run of who we are in the dark. When they finish, most of the dancers lay strewn across the floor with only Sarah Fregeau left on her... Read more
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