Ame Henderson and Wen Wei Wang selected as Associate Dance Artists at the National Arts Centre

Amehenderson blog
Ame Henderson © Photo: Liam Maloney
Wen wei wang blog 2
Wen Wei Wang © Photo: Shin Sugino

Hi y’all. Christmas came early this year for two talented Canadian choreographers. Ame Henderson (of Toronto) and Wen Wei Wang (of Vancouver) were both chosen by Dance Producer Cathy Levy to join the ranks of NAC Associate Dance Artists. Ame Henderson and Wen Wei Wang are two of the hottest names in Canadian dance, each with a unique style and vision and with an enviable international reputation. Their inclusion in this prestigious group underscores the strong commitment the National Arts Centre is making to some of this country’s most interesting and innovative dance artists.

Both choreographers have been getting great reviews for their most recent work. "Henderson is an agent provocateur of dance" The Globe and Mail has written. Reviewing what we are saying, Paula Citron wrote in the same newspaper (May 23, 2013), “What is the definition of dance? With each new work, Toronto choreographer Ame Henderson keeps redefining the art form.” Reviewing Wen Wei Wang’s 7th Sense, Tony Montague called it a “thrilling production.” He wrote in the Georgia Straight (November 12, 2013), “7th Sense exudes a tangible chemistry … it confirms the international calibre of Wen Wei Dance and its increasingly confident kinetic signature.”

Both artists have appeared at the National Arts Centre. Ame Henderson created and performed in The Most Together We’ve Ever Been (with Matija Ferlin) at the first edition of the Face 2 Face contemporary dance series in February 2013. Wen Wei Dance last appeared at the NAC in 2009, performing the memorable Cock-Pit.

The National Arts Centre Associate Dance Artists came together as a group in 2007. Canadian choreographers and dance artists who work on an ongoing basis with the NAC are Sarah Chase, Marie Chouinard, Noam Gagnon, Dana Gingras, Christopher House, Louise Lecavalier, José Navas, Crystal Pite, and Tedd Robinson. The NAC Associate Dance Artists get together occasionally to attend dance performances and discuss relevant issues, from the state of choreography to creation and dissemination, from research to education and outreach. The program is made possible with the support of the Dance Section of the Canada Council for the Arts.

Ame Henderson is known for audacious and unorthodox choreographic experiments. Originally from Vancouver Island, she has an MFA in choreography and is Artistic Director of Public Recordings (Toronto), often collaborating with artists from across disciplines and continents. Her recent projects include relay, 300 TAPES, ROOM (with Tedd Robinson), The Most Together We’ve Ever Been (with Matija Ferlin), and what we are saying. Her newest creation, a commission on the invitation of Toronto Dance Theatre, premieres in February 2014.

Wen Wei Wang was born and raised in China, where he danced professionally. In 1991, he came to Canada and joined the Judith Marcuse Dance Company before dancing with Ballet British Columbia for seven years. The award-winning choreographer has created work for Alberta Ballet, Ballet BC, Ballet Jorgen, Dancers Dancing, the North West Dance Projects in Portland, Oregon, The Arts Umbrella, Vancouver and San Francisco Operas, and Les Ballets Jazz de Montréal (BJM). Since 2003, he has served as Artistic Director of Wen Wei Dance and has choreographed eight full-length works that have been performed across Canada and around the world.

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