Schedule – Dance Together Festival 2019

Friday, June 21, 2019

6:00 – 7:00 pm Swing 101 with Caitlin Wellman

This class will be a fun and friendly introduction to vernacular jazz dance, a dance style rooted in Harlem in the 1930s. This style of jazz dance celebrates individuality and expression by connecting with swing and big band music, the invigorating styles of jazz music being done alongside the dance we will explore’

Caitlin Wellman is a dancer, singer, teacher, performer, and choreographer living in Toronto. She was a founding member of the multi-award winning performance troupe Minnie’s Moochers, from Ithaca, NY. She has been in demand as a teacher across the US, Canada, Europe, Australia, and Asia. She teaches her students more than just a bunch of cool moves (but they get that too)! Her teaching is clear and articulate, and full of fun and creative ways of improving your dancing.

7:15 – 9:00 pm Swing Dance with the Sugar Foot Stompers

The Sugar Foot Stompers are a Toronto based swing band made by and for dancers! Started by long time swing dancers Caitlin & Steve Wellman, they have combined their music and dance experiences to create a band that is meant to get you out of your seats. With a song selection of classic swing tunes that also draws from Toronto’s rich New Orleans Trad connections, they are still a treat for non-dancers as well. The band is made up of some of Toronto most accomplished jazz musicians featuring Caitlin Wellman on vocals, Steve Wellman on drums, Gram Whitty on bass, Jacqueline Chia on trombone, Kevin Miller on banjo, Charlie Trainor on piano and Toby Hughes on saxophone.

Saturday, June 22, 2019

12:00-1:00 pm Yoga Movement with Davy Bisaro (bring your own yoga mat)

Yoga Movement is a fluid, dynamic class that progresses through a series of postures/movements that are linked together with the breath. Lubricates the joints while building stability, and steadiness of mind.

Davy’s varied training and professional experience in movement based practices (Dance, Pilates, Personal Training and Yoga) has been an asset when teaching and inspired Davy to create Yoga Fusion/Movement classes. Davy started Damask Studios when she saw the need for a studio with a friendly and inclusive environment where people could train their bodies in more than one type of way. Davy has a keen eye for movement patterning, postural alignment and a strong knowledge of anatomy. You will come out of her class feeling challenged and having discovered something about your body!

1:15 – 2:15 pm House Dance and Waacking with MixMix Collective

House Dance and Waacking workshop lead by Mix Mix Dance Collective, teaches the basics of these two wonderful dance forms, including touching on the history, movements and musicality inherent in the forms.

Co-founded and led by versatile dancer and choreographer Emily Law and powerhouse dancer/choreographer Ashley Perez. Outrageous, fierce and thoughtful in their investigation of diversity in movement, music and art practice. With a current Canadian take on street dance, the collective brings dances such as waacking, house and hip hop out of clubs and onto the stage. The artists of Mix Mix Dance Collective have been training, performing, teaching and competing in various street dance forms for more than 10 years. They are now ready to share their love of these underrepresented dance forms with a wider audience. Being women of multiethnic backgrounds, their work explores issues that affect women in modern-day North American culture. Their work is loud, colourful, groovy, accessible yet poignant.

2:30 – 3:30 pm Partner Dance 101 with Katya Kuznetsova

Learn how to dance with a partner to any song in this fun and practical workshop for beginners. Yes, it will help you with your two left feet and more! No prior dance experience required.

Katya is a dance teacher, choreographer, and founder of Dance Together Project in Toronto. Originally from the Russian Far East, she has trained in a variety of dance styles including Ballroom, Jazz, Contemporary, Swing, Salsa and Afro-Cuban. Her focus is on facilitating enjoyable dance experiences for everybody, regardless of skill level or variations in physical ability.

3:45 – 4:45 pm Hip Hop with Kristine Flores

Move and groove with Kristine as she flows through some of the foundational steps of Hip Hop dance and it’s history.

From Montreal to Cote d’Ivoire, Africa, from battle stages to streetdance theatre, Kristine has been able to share her love of dance to the masses. Kristine continues to share her craft, with her main styles being house dance and hip hop freestyle, as a part of dance companies Mix Mix Dance Collective and Warehouse Jacks. 

5:00 – 6:00 pm Cuban Salsa Freestyle with Yordan Gutierrez Masa

This Cuban Salsa Freestyle class will dive into rhythmic body movements, isolations and Cuban motion flavour! Basic salsa steps will be combined in some easy to follow freestyle combinations. No partner required!

From Havana, Cuba, Yordan grew up in a rich dance culture and community. Following his passion and desire to learn more about Cuban dance, as a teen he started his first steps in formal instruction at Casas de Cultura. Yordan taught dance in Havana at international schools of dance, Via Danza and Salsamiga. He can be found at various Afro cuban events around Toronto and will be teaching street-style Cuban Salsa at the festival.

6:15 – 9:00 pm Salsa Party with DJ Bernal

Enjoy an open Salsa dance party with Toronto’s favourite Cuban Salsa DJ – DJ Bernal! Open to all!

Sunday, June 23, 2019

12:00 – 1:00 pm Integrated Dance with Kathleen Rea, Shay Erlich and Jenna Roy

Integrated Dance workshop designed to be welcoming of different levels and abilities, co-taught by Shay Erlich, Kathleen Rea and Jenna Roy. Relational dance exercises such as lead and follow, sculpture puppet and weight sharing will be taught as well as communication skills designed to help you navigate your dances.

Shay Erlich is a Toronto-based wheelchair dancer and co-founder of The Cyborg Circus Project. Shay regularly facilitates inclusive dance classes and dance workshops exclusively for disabled dancers, as well as occasionally writing about disability performance art as a critic. 

Jenna Roy is a wheelchair dancer, community facilitator, and co-founder of The Cyborg Circus Project. Originally from the Ottawa area, Jen has been teaching dance and disability arts in Toronto since 2018. 

Kathleen Rea is Toronto dancer and expressive arts partitioner and choreographer. She is one of the facilitator of the EVERY BODY Can Dance Jam and author of the Healing Dance (Charles C. Thomas publishers).

1:15 – 2:15 pm Dress to Sweat with Mary Dora (MD)

Ecstatic dance meets 80’s jazzercise work-out! “Dress To Sweat” is your one stop shop for a fun and full body work-out. This class is for all kinds of movers and shakers. You can make it as intense as you like or choose modifications to give you a subtle burn. Together we will explore the joy of movement and celebrate our bodies through physical expression, fun sequences and dance games.

MD, aka CrystalWhispurr is a non-binary multidisciplinary artist currently living and working in Toronto. Their creative practice is channelled through dance, performance, film making and sound art experimentation. They also work in the community as a DJ, somatic movement practitioner and yoga instructor.

2:30 – 3:30 pm Dance Magic for Kids with Kate Nankervis

Dance Magic for kids is a creative dance workshop. We will do the baby bounce, the noodle dance, the Lazer moves, freeze dance and more. We will make dance magic through movement!

Kate is a dancer, teacher and performer. She is a Graduate of York University Dance Program and works primarily in contemporary dance. Dance Magic is a workshop that explores moves, feelings and approaches to ignite spiritual, joyful aspects of dance through the contemporary dance lens.

3:45 – 4:45 pm Reggaeton with Dailyn Martinez

This will be a fun and interactive class. We will focus on body oscillation movements and incorporate hip hop grooves and Latin motion. We will also explore Afro-Cuban movement and expression inherent in the dance ancestry throughout the Caribbean, shaping the genre of Reggaeton as it is known today.

Dailyn was born in Cuba and is a passionate performer and instructor. At age 13 she started her professional training at the Juan Pablo Duarte school. In 2000 Dailyn graduated from Escuela Nacional de Espectaculos Musicales and Variedades with honours. Prior to immigrating to Canada, Dailyn instructed and performed at the Teatro America and Havana Night Dance Company. Two of Dailyn’s many strengths as an instructor are her ability to bring out each individual’s personal style and an extremely positive attitude.

5:00 – 6:00 pm Kizomba with Albena de Assis

Learn basic steps and concepts of Kizomba, a partner dance originating in Angola, a southwestern African country. Kizomba is a dance of precise connection and immense fluidity, that combines the same concept of connection that tango employs, with the softness of the African groove.

Albena grew up in Luanda, Angola where, as a child, she started studying ballet and modern dance at the National School of Dance. After moving to Toronto she started dancing Salsa in 2001, studied with some of the best salsa and Afro-Cuban instructors in Toronto and in 2005 founded AfroLatino Dance Company, dedicated to the performance and instruction of the dances of Afro and Latin origin, from her native Angola (Kizomba, Semba, Afrohouse), to Cuba (Salsa, Afro-Cuban, Rumba), and Brazil (Samba) and more. AfroLatino Dance Company is the pioneer school in Toronto to introduce Kizomba classes in 2009, Semba in 2011, and Afro-house in 2014. Her workshop will focus on Kizomba connection, rhythm and styling.

6:15 – 9:00 pm Social Folk Dance Lesson and Live Music Open Dance with Balfolk Toronto

Balfolk dancing is social dancing from Western Europe, a recent revival of traditional, mostly French, folk dances. We dance and teach partner dances, group dances, and some snakey chain dances, which include Gigues, rondeaus, schottisches and more! The dances are all fun and easy to learn: you don’t need any partners or prior experience. We’ll show you how! We will be dancing to live music, including fiddles, flutes and other acoustic instruments.

Balfolk Toronto is a community of musicians and dancers who enjoy exploring and reviving traditional folk dances of Western Europe in an inclusive and fun atmosphere.