National Arts Centre Electrifies Dance Stage with Brazil's Grupo Corpo Friday and Saturday, October 26-27in Southam Hall at 8 pm

Back by popular demand, contemporary Brazilian tour de force  Grupo Corpo returns with an evening of National Arts Centre premieres.

Infused with classical training, modern dance, and sensual Brazilian street dance, the unmistakably loose-limbed and erotically expressive style of Grupo Corpo will be on full display in Ímã and Sem Mim, in Southam Hall on Friday October 26, and Saturday October 27, 2012 at 8 p.m. The double bill is 1 hour 50 minutes, with one 20-minute intermission.

About Grupo Corpo

The dreamchild of the Pederneiras family, Brazil's Grupo Corpo ("Body Group") was founded in 1975. Emblematic of a new vitality in the visual arts, fashion, design, and music, Grupo Corpo fused the popular with the avant-garde and traditional Brazilian culture with foreign influences. Paulo Pederneiras remains as founding Artistic Director of Grupo Corpo and brother Rodrigo Pederneiras is the troupe's principal choreographer. Together they have created the indelible Grupo Corpo style -- lean, limber, balletic, with a flirtation of Latin American hips and a percussive groundwork of funky Afro footwork. A scorching, high-voltage performance by Grupo Corpo is a combination of classical ballet with modern dance, tango, rumba, and traditional Brazilian samba and capoeira. Each performance features idiosyncratic music (often an original score) and is stamped with a distinctive and eye-popping visual style. Paulo Pederneiras is responsible for set and lighting design and Freusa Zechmeister creates the audacious costumes for the nineteen extraordinary dancers.

Ímã (“magnet”), premiered in 2009, is a kinetic, exuberant exploration of the attraction and repulsion of human relationships. It begins as a massed rhythmic shuffle, then solos, duos, and smaller and larger groups of dancers playfully form and dissipate. The dancers push and pull, lean on and support one another like magnets. As they get closer to one another, the barriers start falling and articles of clothing are shed one by one. The soundtrack by Brazilian trio + 2 uses instruments such as ocarina and cuica to give a national flavour to an electronic blend. Dazzling state-of-the-art LED effects saturate the stage and walls and bodies in an ever-changing array of radiant colour. As the lighting intensifies, the mercury rises, and Ímã becomes a riot of extreme feats of virtuosity and flamboyant mardi gras colours that is violent, radical, exuberant.

Sem Mim (“without me”), premiered in 2011, speaks of women who mourn the absence and celebrate the return of lovers from the sea. A soothing, rocking original score by Carlos Núñes and José Miguel Wisnik was inspired by the “sea of Vigo song cycle”, a 13th-century Galician-Portuguese songbook. The choreography is a dynamic interchange between calm and fury, with the ebb and flow of the waves echoing the separation between feminine and masculine. Sem Mim is performed in unitards (dyed to match the skin color of each dancer) imprinted with inscriptions from the Middle Ages. The stunning set features monumental geometric and organic shapes that represent the sea, mountains, clouds, boats, fishing nets, and rosy-fingered dawn.

Master Class with Grupo Corpo
Saturday, October 27th
10:30 am to 12:30 pm

Utilizing company movement sequences and styles, this 2 hour class will introduce and explore Grupo Corpo’s original style. As dancers learn movement they will absorb techniques ranging from modern to ballet that inspire choreographer Rodrigo Pederneiras’ signature vocabulary. The class will begin with a 40 minute warm-up period, after which excerpts from the following works will be explored PARABELO, O CORPO, ÍMÃ AND SEM MIM.

  • The class is for pre-professional-advanced level ballet/modern students and dancers (aged 14 and up)
  • Location: Rehearsal Hall B, National Arts Centre, 53 Elgin Street, Ottawa (Enter by Stage Door)
  • Saturday, October 27th from 10:30 am to 12:30 pm
  • Cost: $25
  • As space is limited, please register in advance with Kirsten Andersen, Dance Outreach Coordinator, NAC or Tel: 613-947-7000 ext 588


"The Brazilian troupe didn't dance so much as launch itself into a kind of playful, elastic synchrony. Tight patterns flirted with reckless abandon. The dancers were rigorously disciplined in unison, yet their steps were teasingly wanton. Again and again, robo-precision and sexy swagger seemed like two sides of the same coin."

Michael Upchurch, The Seattle Times, September 8, 2011

"Grupo Corpo's dancers are justly celebrated for their virtuosity, and when 22 of them are moving in rippling, flickering, high-kicking unison, the audience are guaranteed a physical thrill. In Ímã, choreographer Rodrigo Pederneiras blends in the language of lindy-hop, with its bouncing, high-flying partnerwork. From an arresting opening – which has the dancers shuffling horizontally across the stage, couples glued at the hip – the choreography fans upwards and outwards in waves of exuberant, aerial dance. Exuberance, energy and excess are fabulous..."

Judith Mackrell, The Guardian (London), September 15, 2011

"... Brazil's Grupo Corpo burst on stage, feinting and swerving and flicking out shins, glossy brown limbs setting off the sharp green or yellow of tiny shorts ... The movement style of Grupo Corpo is distinctive, [with] the flirty bendiness of rumba, the bounce of capoeira, the skyward swoop of lindyhop and, yes, the lightning footwork of the midfielder outwitting a blizzard of defence, all combining to create a lean, limber dance mode that looks enormous fun to do."

Jenny Gilbert, The Independent (London), September 18, 2011

  • Grupo Corpo performs Ímã and Sem Mim in Southam Hall of the National Arts Centre on Friday October 26, and Saturday October 27, 2012 at 8 p.m. Tickets are $40, $50, $63, and $75 for adults and $21.50, $26.50, $33, and $39 for students (upon presentation of a valid student ID card).
  • Tickets are available at the NAC Box Office (in person); tickets are also available (with service charges) at all Ticketmaster outlets, by telephone from Ticketmaster at 1-888-991-2787 (ARTS), and online through the Ticketmaster link on the NAC's website at
  • Subject to availability, full-time students (aged 13-29) with valid Trinity Live Rush™ membership may buy up to 2 tickets per performance at the discount price of $12 per ticket. Tickets are available online ( or at the NAC box office from 10 a.m. on the day before the performance until 6 p.m. on the day of the show. This includes all available seats, including the best seats in the house. Check out for information on the Trinity Live Rush program.
  • Groups of 10 or more save 15% to 20% off regular ticket prices. To reserve your seats, call 613 947-7000, ext. 634 or e-mail
  • For additional information and photos/video of the production, visit the NAC website at

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Clara Wicke, Marketing and Communications Officer, NAC Dance
tel:613-947-7000, ext. 379  Cell: 613-617-4782