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Brilliant young dancers from the Arts Umbrella Dance Company showcase bold, innovative works

Janessa St. Pierre leaps boldly into the future. Photos: Michael Slobodian

Not only do you get to experience beautifully trained dance artists from the Arts Umbrella Dance Company (AUDC) at Season Finale May 24 to 25 - two evening shows May 24-25 and one matinee May 25 -  at the Vancouver Playhouse, you also get to enjoy choreography from some of the most important contemporary choreographers alive today.

 Artistic Director Artemis Gordon is excited by the prospect.

“The new works that have been created with the dancers this season include some of the most thrilling and exciting choreography I have seen,” says Gordon. “It’s hard to know what to be most proud of: the choreography or the dancers.”

AUDC consists of more than 60 dancers - select members of the Arts Umbrella Professional Dance Program and Graduate Program - who train, rehearse, and perform to exacting professional standards in senior (ages 16-20) and apprentice (ages 12-16) ensembles.

Led by Gordon, AUDC has become one of Canada's leading repertory companies focused on developing strong and expressive young dancers who represent the future of contemporary dance. AUDC is recognized internationally  for being a unique company because of the excellence of its dancers at such a young age and the cutting edge choreography they perform.

At Season Finale, the company will perform challenging pieces choreographed by Walter Metteini, Aszure Barton, Lesley Telford, James Kudelka, Emily Molnar, Sidra Bell, Gioconda Barbuto, and other leading choreographers who normally work just with professional companies.

 Mattteini, Artistic Director of Imperfect Dancers Company in Pisa, Italy, says he enjoys working with AUDC dancers “because they seem like professional dancers. They are young, but they are really very open-minded. They are hard workers, and very prepared. It's a real pleasure. At Arts Umbrella we don't have the impression we are working with a school. It is like we are working with a professional company.“

This might be the last time to see some of these amazing young performers as they head out of the graduate program to begin their professional carreers.

“Never before have Arts Umbrella dancers been so successful in garnering dance contracts so early in the season,” says Gordon.  

Season Finale – part of Arts Umbrella’s Expressions Festival 2013 – will be the last performance for AUDC by dancers who have accepted contracts with international companies including Imperfect Dancers (Pisa, Italy), Les Ballet Jazz de Montreal, and Conny Janssen Danst (Rotterdam). Six dancers in Season Finale, who are in the Arts Umbrella/Vancouver Community College Grad Program, also danced in Ballet BC’s recent production of Giselle. Three of those dancers have been accepted as apprentices into Ballet BC.

For tickets: https://16929.thankyou4caring.org/season-finale-public

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