Award-winning ballerina Evelyn Hart is an internationally renowned dancer and one of Canada’s most treasured artists.
After studying in the Royal Winnipeg Ballet School Professional Division, where she trained under David Moroni, she joined the RWB in 1976, becoming a soloist in 1978 and principal dancer in 1979. Over her 30-year career with the RWB, she performed on stages in over 118 countries and on every continent.
Hart became an Officer of the Order of Canada in 1983 and was promoted to Companion in 1994. In 1987, she was named Manitoba’s Woman of the Year. McMaster University and the University of Manitoba presented her with honorary doctorates in 1989. She has received two ACTRA Awards for her performances on television of Belong and as Juliet in Romeo & Juliet.
She was awarded the Chalmers Award for excellence in the arts and inducted into Canada’s Walk of Fame in 2000. In 2001, Hart received a Governor General’s Performing Arts Award to recognize her lifetime achievement in the performing arts. She was nominated with Rex Harrington for a 2005 Gemini for Best Performance in a Performing Arts Program or Series for Veronica Tennant’s A Pairing of Swans.
André Lewis has spent the majority of his career with Canada’s first professional dance company, accepting the position of Artistic Director in 1996. Since then, Lewis has been the driving force behind the new and innovative works that have dramatically rejuvenated the Company’s repertoire.
Lewis has commissioned numerous blockbuster ballets such as Mark Godden’s Dracula in 1998 and Jorden Morris’ Moulin Rouge® – The Ballet in 2009. In 2013, Lewis commissioned another outstanding new creation in conjunction with New York choreographer Lila York. The full-length ballet The Handmaid’s Tale was a bold adaptation of the novel of the same name by Governor General Award-winning Canadian author, Margaret Atwood.
In 2014, for the RWB’s 75th anniversary season, Lewis commissioned choreographer Mark Godden to create the groundbreaking work Going Home Star – Truth and Reconciliation representing the many stories, both told and untold, of Indian Residential School Survivors and their families.
Further underscoring Lewis’ passion for dance are his multiple appearances at the Rural Retreat for International Dance Leaders, held in England. His work has been recognized through receiving both the Governor General’s Meritorious Award and the Jubilee Medal, as well as being featured in the television series, Chacun sa route.
James Kudelka is widely acknowledged as one of North America’s most innovative choreographers. His mastery of both classical ballet and modern, contemporary dance has earned him commissions from companies as stylistically diverse as American Ballet Theatre, Chicago’s Hubbard Street Dance and Les Ballets Jazz de Montréal.
While adept in the classical ballet vocabulary, he infuses it with a contemporary sensibility acquired from his intense interest in modern movement idioms. Kudelka’s work covers an impressive range through large-scale and arresting adaptations of such classics as Swan Lake, The Nutcracker and Cinderella, to boldly innovative creative collaborations with dancers, designers and musicians.
Kudelka is the recipient of numerous awards, including two Jean A. Chalmers Awards (1973 and 1993) and two Dora Mavor Moore Awards (1995 and 1996). After nine distinguished years as Artistic Director of The National Ballet of Canada (1996 to 2005), Kudelka continues to undertake collaborative projects that engage and challenge him as a choreographer.
Andrew McAnerney was raised in the British choral tradition and studied music at the University of Oxford (Magdalen College). He has enjoyed a varied career as a conductor, consort singer, soloist and arranger. Since moving to Canada in 2013, he has worked with a range of professional choirs and orchestras including Ensemble Caprice, Chamber Players of Canada, Elora Festival Singers, Choeur Louisbourg, and La Rose des Vents and was appointed artistic director of the Studio de musique ancienne de Montréal in 2015.
A former Tallis Scholar, Andrew McAnerney has performed with many of Europe’s finest early music ensembles and is credited on over 50 recordings including the music of Bach, Brumel, Clemens non Papa, Crequillon, Gombert, Handel, Lassus, Lotti, Morales, Moulu, Mozart, Palestrina, Phinot, Purcell and Rore. Laudate Dominum is his début CD with the Studio, released in March 2017.
Andrew McAnerney is passionate about musical excellence and accessibility. He regularly prepares his own early music performance scores from original sources, and is fascinated with presenting rediscovered works.