Aeris Korper Dance Theatre has never been one to shy away from creative collaborations. In the past year alone, the company has participated in the #DanceHamOnt choreographic workshop and brought together artists of all disciplines in the Gage Park Greenhouse for Collapsing the Night, all while continuing to host its regular PROSPECTS programme for creators and dance audiences.

This latter event will mark its seventh edition on Saturday, February 22 at the Burlington Student Theatre. PROSPECTS invites audiences to engage directly with the original works of choreographers by not only watching new and in-progress contemporary dance works that are aligned with a set theme of the evening, but also participate in a guided Q&A discussion led by each choreographer. For those who may not wish to provide feedback verbally or in the moment, an opportunity for written feedback is also made available. To keep the evening casual, Aeris Korper will provide a cash bar for its audience. 

For first-time dance attendees, or those who may feel intimidated by a dance performance, this format provides an incredible introduction by encouraging audience members to ask questions related to what they have just seen or experienced, as well as listen to the perspective of their fellow audience members, who have seen the exact same performance. For choreographers and dancers, the experience is also extremely valuable by providing immediate feedback on a work that is still in progress; artists are able to experiment and receive feedback as to what may be successful in conveying their artistic message.

“Having produced six successful editions of PROSPECTS, we are excited and motivated by the enthusiasm and positive feedback we receive from participants and community members,” said Lisa Emmons, Aeris Korper’s Artistic Director. “We believe our approach to dance is unique; we believe that all movement is expressive and powerful. Our show is created with the intent of presenting multicultural and diverse dance is an informal, warm environment in order to create connections within our community.”

For this seventh edition of PROSPECTS, participating artists have been provided the theme of Relationship and Connection. Dancers and choreographers will be invited to explore this theme through creative interpretations of ballroom dance, disability dance, Bengali folk dance and other powerful forms of movement.

Faith Dance is one of the artists whose work will be showcased on February 22. The founder of local Bollywood troupe NACHEGI, Faith Dance has creatively fused her love of K-Pop music with Bellydance. Her offering to PROSPECTS is OBSCURITY; an exploration of an artist’s journey through a mental health crisis, examining how the loss of energy, focus and more can obscure the creative process and the changing nature of relationships in the midst of a struggle. 

Joining Faith Dance at PROSPECTS is The Cyborg Circus Project; a disability-led and focused circus and dance collective that bridges the gap between recreational and professional movement arts. In SafeWords, the piece to be presented at PROSPECTS, the collective will explore what it means to have no choice but to be hyper-competent in all that one does. Through movement, they will explore the expectations placed on bodies and minds, and how in utilizing trust, risk taking, vulnerability and community, these expectations can be subverted.

Other participating artists in the evening include Mushtari Afroz and her collective ‘Kathak Bandi,’ which aims to celebrate human stories and experience through dance, rhythm and live music; Project Oswald, whose heart-felt and humorous dance-theatre works originally began in Calgary before moving eastward; and Thea Sachade, who has performed at Jacob’s Pillow and The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts through her work with Javier Padilla’s The Movement Playground.

Who: Aeris Korper and Various Artists
What: PROSPECTS
When: Saturday, February 22, 2020 from 7pm – 11:30pm
Where: Burlington Student Theatre (2131 Prospect Street, Burlington)
Tickets: $20 in advance online, $25 at the door (cash only)

Featured image of Project Oswald by Marlowe Porter. Photo courtesy of Aeris Korper Dance Theatre.

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