Dusk Dances 2016 Artists


Michael Caldwell

Core Member


Michael Caldwell is a multiple Dora Mavor Moore award-nominated, Toronto-based choreographer, performer, curator, and arts advocate.  An 'intense dynamo on stage' (Scene4) with 'exceptional interpretive skills' (Globe & Mail), Caldwell has performed/collaborated with over 45 of Canada's esteemed dance creators/companies, and has performed across North America, Europe, Asia, and Australia. Caldwell is quickly garnering critical acclaim for his 'daring and powerful' (Bateman Reviews) choreography.

His work has been commissioned/presented at dance: made in Canada, Dusk Dances, the CanAsian Dance Festival, Dance Matters, Series 8:08(resident artist), Porch View Dances, Nuit Blanche, Nuit Rose, and the Toronto Fringe Festival.  His new full-length work, Factory, will premiere at The Citadel in September 2017. Through his work as artistic producer for the Fall for Dance North Festival and as co-curator for Kaeja d’Dance’s Wind Down Dance, Caldwell seeks to contribute to Toronto’s cultural landscape with curated dance programming of the highest artistic quality.

With a bachelor’s degree in film/art history from Syracuse University, Caldwell sits on the board of directors at The School of Toronto Dance Theatre and on the advisory committee at Dancemakers. Upcoming collaborations: adelheid/Heidi Strauss, Bruce Barton/Pil Hansen/Eve Egoyan, Coleman Lemieux & Compagnie, Corpus Dance Projects, Danny Grossman, Gerry Trentham, Kaeja d'Dance, Louis Laberge-Côté, and Signal Theatre.



Zhenya Cerneacov

Core Member


Born in Chisinau, Republic of Moldova, Zhenya grew up in a household of musicians and from an early age developed a great passion for the arts. After studying ballroom dance for nine years, he was invited to become a member of Moldova’s Show Ballet Theodor where his versatility in a range of dance styles had a chance to shine. In 2006 Zhenya arrived in Canada where quickly became an active member of the contemporary dance scene.

He has been featured in the works of a number of companies including; BoucharDanse, Coleman Lemieux Compagnie, Chimera Project, Corpus, Danny Grossman Dance Company, Menaka Thakkar Dance Company, Kaha:wi Dance Theatre.

For the past three years he has been a member of Dusk Dances core ensemble.




MairÉad Filgate

Core Member


Mairéad Filgate is a Toronto-based dance artist and graduate of the Etobicoke School of the Arts and the School of Toronto Dance Theatre. She was a member of the Danny Grossman Dance Company (2003-2008), is Artistic Associate with tiger princess dance projects, and collaborates regularly with BoucharDanse, Dusk Dances, and Public Recordings. With Public Recordings she toured across Canada and Europe and was co-recipient of Dora Mavor Moore Awards for Best Production and Best Ensemble for what we are saying (2014). Recently she has also performed work by Trisha Brown (NYC; as part of Nuit Blanche Toronto), Tino Seghal (Berlin), Bill Coleman, Ian Spencer Bell (NYC), Kaeja d’Dance, and Tom Brouillette. In 2008 she co-founded Throwdown Collective, a collaborative company that creates site-specific and stage work. Their work Various Concert (2015) received the Audience Choice Award for the MainStage Series at dance: made in canada/fait au canada. Mairéad is a board member of the Canadian Alliance of Dance Artists and a part-time student of Sociology and Women & Gender Studies at the University of Toronto.




Kate Franklin



Award-winning dance artist Kate Franklin spent the first decade of her career based in Toronto, dancing with numerous companies and choreographers, most notably Company Vice Versa (Valerie Calam), Zata Omm Dance Projects (William Yong), Matjash Mrozewski, and Kate Alton, amongst others.  

Her choreography was performed by dance training programs such as Quinte Ballet School, Canadian Contemporary Dance Theatre, companies such as JD Dance and at festivals including At the Wrecking Ball and Dusk Dances.

Kate produced many full-length evenings of work with her two companies, Ambitious Enterprises (with Tina Fushell) and firstthingsfirst productions (with Kate Holden).

Now living in Vancouver, Kate is teaching contemporary dance and yoga and working with choreographers Justine A. Chambers, Meredith Kalaman and company Tara Cheyenne Performance.  She returns to Toronto regularly to continue her work with Dusk Dances and Company Vice Versa.




Molly Johnson

Core Member


Born and raised on Cape Breton Island, Molly Johnson is a Toronto-based independent dance artist. Molly has worked with such esteemed artists as Nova Bhattacharya, Sylvie Bouchard, Susie Burpee, Tina Fushell, Sharon Moore, Julia Sasso, and Heidi Strauss. She has spent close to a decade performing in parks across Ontario and beyond with Dusk Dances and is an ongoing collaborator with Marie France Forcier’s Forcier Stage Works, with whom she won a Dora Mavor Moore Award for Outstanding Performance by a Female in 2013’s Lab Rats.

Molly dances for Montréal’s Le Carré des Lombes, performing the acclaimed work of Danièle Desnoyers nationally and abroad. Under the umbrella of MjB, she investigates artistic practices with musician James Bunton. Molly was a 2012 recipient of an Ontario Arts Council International Residency grant, a 2013 Finalist for the Toronto Arts Foundation Emerging Artist Award, and is a freelance writer in the space between.




Meredith Thompson



Meredith Thompson is a Toronto-based independent dance artist, originally from Huntsville, Ontario. A York University graduate (BFA/BEd, 2000), she began her career as a member of the Danny Grossman Dance Company, and soon thereafter began working with Dancetheatre David Earle. Over the years, she has also enjoyed projects and performances with Trish Beatty, Sylvie Bouchard/BoucharDanse, Tina Fushell, Barbara Lindenberg, Yvonne Ng/Princess Productions, and Santee Smith/Kaha:wi Dance Theatre, among others.

A core member of Dusk Dances, the artist has been performing and touring with this popular outdoor dance festival since 2007. Co-choreographic projects with fellow dance artists Mairéad Filgate and Kate Franklin (respectively) have been presented at a number of festivals and events. Fond of teaching and young people, Thompson has also worked extensively as a teaching artist with the Toronto District School Board, and is currently on faculty at George Brown Dance, as well as at the Canadian Contemporary Dance Theatre, where she is the Director of the Young Apprentice Program.



Brendan Wyatt

Core Member


Brendan Wyatt is an independent dance artist with over twenty years of experience in classical and contemporary dance. Since 2005 Wyatt has been one of the Canada’s most sought after professional dancers, collaborating and performing in over 50 works.

Wyatt trained professionally at Canada’s Royal Winnipeg Ballet and The School of Toronto Dance Theatre. In 1997 he co-created and instructed an interactive dance program for the postural and spatial awareness of visually challenged students with the Canadian National Institute for the Blind, Victoria BC.

Wyatt has interpreted works for a multitude of companies and choreographers across the country, creating and performing in dances by Andrea Nann, Heidi Strauss, DA Hoskins, Robert Glumbek, Sharon Moore, Sasha Ivanochko and Susie Burpee for Winnpeg’s Contemporary Dancers, Kevin O’Day, Emily Molnar, Matjash Mzorwecki, Shaun Hounsel and Roberto Campanella for ProArte Danaza, Yvonne Ng, William Yong, The Chimera Project, Sylvie Bouchard for Dusk Dances, Marie Forcier, Karen Jamieson and Trish Beatty.




Myriam Allard (La Otra Orilla)



« Myriam Allard is a true agent provocateur, pushing flamenco forward to achieve creative goals… an independent thinker thrillingly engaged with the music and the movement, creating her own unique expression. » Kaija Pepper, The Dance Current, 2012

Sensitive to the world of music and dance from very early childhood, Myriam Allard’s life changed when she discovered flamenco. Aged 21, she left her home in Quebec to travel to Spain, where she lived for six years. After intensive training she began dancing professionally at the traditional tablaos flamencosin Spain, Japan, France and Germany. Drawing strength from her rigorous European training and extensive professional experience, Allard’s dance breaks free of the traditional esthetic boundaries to develop an idiom that combines the instinctive and the impulsive with great sensitivity and refinement. She now lives in Montreal, where she founded La Otra Orilla in 2006 with singer and director Hedi Graja. Within this company she has developed a unique choreographic expression and produced 7 different shows that have toured Canada, the US, South America and Great-Britain with much success.




Atypique – Le Collectif



Atypique is a collective of emerging artists who have been combining their efforts to creatively research inter-disciplinary, site-specific performance since their formation in 2010. The collective creates ‘tailor-made’ performances designed for specific communal environments and public forums; these pieces invest in place in an atypical manner to unveil new dimensions in living space. Atypique is Marie-Pier Bazinet, Élise Bergeron, Vanessa Bousquet, Philippe Poirier and Jessica Viau.




Sylvie Bouchard (BoucharDanse)



Sylvie Bouchard is originally from Montréal, where she began her dance training. She moved to Toronto to study at The School of Toronto Dance Theatre and subsequently joined the Company in 1985. Sylvie also performed with Fujiwara Dance Inventions, Pounds per Square Inch, Kaeja D’dance, Winnipeg Contemporary Dancers and Dancemakers, and has worked with many choreographers including Susie Burpee, Tedd Robinson, Marie-Josée Chartier, Peggy Baker, Sashar Zarif, Roger Sinha and Louis-Martin Charest.

Throughout her artistic career, Bouchard has continued to forge original concepts in both the creation and the presentation of dance. In 1993, she created Dusk Dances, a festival that presents dance in Public Parks. In 1997 she formed the Company CORPUS with artistic partner David Danzon. Between 1997 and 2008, she co-created eight works with Danzon that toured internationally in Street Theatre Festivals, on stage and in schools.

In 2008, Sylvie Bouchard forms BoucharDanse, a company that serves as an umbrella for her artistic endeavors. Bouchard also co-created and performed in the popular series Four Square at Tree House TV, and is the recipient of the 2009 KM Hunter Artists Award in Dance.





Susie Burpee

Choreographer and withrow park host


Susie Burpee creates ‘fully human characters, struggling for connection’ (The Toronto Star).  She choreographs for contemporary dance and theatre, and her work has received Dora Mavor Moore Awards for Outstanding Choreography and Performance.  Susie was a former company dancer for Dancemakers and Le Groupe Dance Lab, and she is a past recipient of the K.M. Hunter Artist Award for Dance. Her work examines the intersection of creator and performer, and the collision of chance and craft.

This is How We Love is one of these delightful collisions - the element of chance refreshes the piece every performance.  Susie is particularly interested in creating characters for the stage, and she has studied Character and Bouffon with Adam Lazarus and Philippe Gaulier.  She is a member of the Canadian Alliance of Dance Artists, and a board member of the Toronto Dance Community Love-In.

Originally from Manitoba, Susie lives with her husband and two daughters in east end Toronto. susieburpee.com




Eve Egoyan



Eve Egoyan is a pianist, an artist whose medium is the piano. Her performances encompass extremely contrasting sensibilities: from Alvin Curran’s five-hour long Inner Cities to Erik Satie’s miniatures; from minimalist Simple Lines of Enquiry by Ann Southam to maximalist new complexity works by Michael Finnissy; from the barely audible to roaring overtone-filled resonances; from the rigorous interpretation of a score to free improvisation. Egoyan also explores other art forms and technologies in relation to the piano. She has recorded eleven solo CDs which have received many accolades including "Best Classical" The Globe and Mail (1999) for her first solo CD, and more recently one of “Ten Top” classical discs, New Yorker magazine (2009), and “Top Classical Disc of the Year”, The Globe and Mail (2011) - all for contemporary solo piano repertoire. Her most recent disc is Thought and Desire music by Linda Catlin Smith.




Milan Gervais



Milan is a Montreal-based dancer and choreographer. She conceives choreographic proposals for public space: Auto-Fiction (2009), Trait d’union (2011), Intersection (2012), Run (2014). Her work has been presented at many festivals in Canada and Europe. She directs Human Playground: a creative platform and dance company, that develops new ways of looking at live art forms as powerful creative communication tools. 




Nina Gilmour

Touring host


Nina Gilmour has most recently been working with Theatre Smith-Gilmour on an adaptation of Victor Hugo's Les Misérables. She has also collaborated with Theatre Smith-Gilmour on The Assholes: A Cabaret and As I Lay Dying, which played on the main stage at the National Arts Centre and will tour across Canada in 2017. Her co-creation, Death Married my Daughter, has been touring since 2013, including the Toronto and Hamilton Fringe Festivals, the Toronto Theatre Centre and the new Brock University Performing Arts Centre. In the fall she played the lead in Valerie Buhagiar’s upcoming feature It’s Hard To Be Human.  She has been nominated for a Dora Mavor Moore Award for Best Ensemble in As I Lay Dying and The Tale of a T-Shirt. 

Nina’s background in physical theatre and improvisation stems from her training in Theatre Performance at Humber College and French master clown Philippe Gaulier in Paris. 




Hedi Graja (La Otra Orilla)

Musician and singer


«Graja’s singing is bewitching and magnificent.» The Indyish.com

A multi-faceted artist, Hedi Graja has roots on both shores of the Mediterranean Sea, which will have an definite influence on his artistic identity. His unconventional artistic journey started with theatre studies in Paris, followed by classical voice lessons at the Conservatoire National Régional de Toulouse. It was there that his connection to flamenco arose. Pursuing a greater knowledge of the art, he moved to Spain, and it was in Seville that he realized his true calling for flamenco singing. Self- taught, Hedi El Moro began his training by listening to the great cantaores (figures), and by participating in local “fiestas”. After four years in Andalusia, he returned to Paris, where he completed a Licence en Lettres et Arts at the Université Denis Diderot while working as an actor with the Le Théâtre du Voyageur theatre company. Towards the end of 2005, Hedi Graja came to live in Montreal, where he founded La Otra Orilla with dancer Myriam Allard.




Jareth Li

Lighting designer


Jareth is a lighting designer based in Toronto, and happy to be back for another season pretty much in his back yard with Dusk Dances. Recent lighting designs include: The Trial of Judith K (Thought For Food Productions); Casimir and Caroline (The Howland Company); Dusk Dances 2015; Mourning Dove (Sudbury Theatre Centre); Dangerous Liaisons (Red One Collective); The Widow (SummerWorks); 48 Hour Dance (Fresh Collective);The Harrowing (Clock Tower); Disco Pigs (A Lasting Dose Productions).

He has also spent six seasons as an assistant lighting designer at the Stratford Festival, and five seasons at the Canadian Opera Company. Select credits include Shakespeare In Love; Oedipus Rex; Tommy; Othello; The Little Years (Stratford). La Boheme; Tristan und Isolde; L’amour de Loin (Canadian Opera Company). Jareth has also had the opportunity to tour across North America with companies such as Menaka Thakkar Dance and Just For Laughs. Jareth is a member of the Associated Designers of Canada.



Jillian Peever



With six years of cumulative professional training, Peever joined Toronto Dance Theatre for the 2011/12 season. Following this she developed her skills as choreographer through mentorship under Sasha Ivanochko. Her work has received funding from all levels of government. Her choreography has been presented through Danceworks Co-Works, Series 8:08’s Choreographic Workshops, Fresh Blood, and other small venues in Toronto. Peever has worked for choreographers Peggy Baker, Angela Blumberg, Sylvie Bouchard, Lina Cruz, Denise Fujiwara, Michael Greyeyes, Danny Grossman, Christopher House, Kaeja d’Dance, Sharon B. Moore, and Lemi Ponifaso.

Peever’s first major production and solo-show The Mystery of Mr. Leftovers won her Best Female Performer at the 2016 Dora Mavor Moore awards. The show, written and choreographed by Sharon B. Moore received nominations for Best Production, Choreography and Lighting Design. She shares her love of the art form through teaching both children and adults independently and for various organizations, including Canada’s National Ballet School.



Apolonia Velasquez & Ofilio Sinbadinho



Recipients of the Dance Ontario Innovation Award, the Manifesto Innovation & Originality Award, and the Soul Pepper Dance Award, they are the founders and directors of Urban Contemporary theatre dance company GADFLY. Their work includes Dora Mavor Moore Award winning ‘Klorofyl'. They have been commissioned to create work for Decidedly Jazz Danceworks, Coleman Lemieux & Compagnie, Canadian Contemporary Dance Theatre, Claudia Moore, Ryerson Theatre School, The School of Toronto Dance Theatre, and more. Gadfly has been presented in Festivals such as Luminato, Nuit Blanche, Festival DansEncore, Ontario Dance Weekend, and Manifesto. Apolonia and Ofilio are also the founders of yearly events such as TUDS Festival of Urban Dance Culture.

Notorious for their versatility, they have acquired a considerable amount of experience in the television, entertainment and theatre dance industries. They have worked for artists such as: Katy Perry, Ariana Grande, Kiesza, Nelly Furtado, Feist, Cascada, Down With Webster, and Serena Ryder. Movie credits include Turn The Beat Around, Camp Rock II, You Got Served II/Beat The World, and Resident Evil Retribution. They can be seen in commercials for So You Think You Can Dance Canada, Dove, Nike, Bell, Staples, Virgin Mobile and have performed or choreographed for Ted Talks, Mugler, Nike, Bench clothing, Canada Goose, and GM Canada.





Martha Randall

Nia Instructor at Withrow Park


Martha has been offering Nia classes in Toronto and across Canada for 20 years. Her background includes a BFA in Dance from York U and studies in yoga, tai chi, karate, Butoh, and many forms of dance for self-awareness. Martha has performed with Claudia Moore's MoonHorse Dance Theatre and presented at Older and Reckless in choreography by Sylvie Bouchard. She is Canada's Nia Education Trainer delivering Nia intensives across the country. Martha has presented for SoulPepper Theatre's Youth Outreach program, Second City's educational division, the TDSB's Conference for Music & Drama teachers as well as at various schools. Martha has volunteered classes at Gilda's Club, a support service for women with cancer, and is currently offering support to a dance program for stroke patients at U of T.

About Nia
Nia is a mindful dance workout that combines 52 simple moves from dance arts, martial arts, and healing arts. It is a low-impact, barefoot workout adaptable to all fitness abilities. The music is an integral part of the class, drawing on a full range of styles and moods to enhance artistry, emotional quality and whole body engagement. Movement variety, self-expression and personal conditioning at one’s own level are all encouraged during the workout. Elements of community interaction, improvisation and vocalizing are regularly introduced to build a sense of empowerment, group dynamics and fun.






Band at Withrow Park


DoubleTooth is the creative outlet of Toronto musician/producers Joshua Van Tassel and Robbie Grunwald.  The music is an improvisational sonic journey inspired by psychedelia, the music of Nigeria in the 1960’s, and electronic dance music.  DoubleTooth has taken the approach of setting clear limitations on the creation process in order to open up creative possibilities in their music making.  In the wake of the release of Volume 1, a successful run of festival performances and signing to Halifax label Backward Music, DoubleTooth continues to create infectious music that will make you move, as well as ambient soundscapes that will soothe your soul.






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