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Dancing on the Edge hurls dance into unexpected places

Lara Barclay and Billy Marchenski in MascallDance's The Three Cornered Hat. Photo: Chris Randle  Teaser Photo: Photo: What Belongs to You/ Vanessa Goodman Photo: Ben Didier

Looking for cutting edge dance in unexpected places?

Dancing on the Edge provides ten days of programming that will satisfy your dance itch. Running from July 3 to July 12, there are main stage shows in new venues, mixed programs at the Firehall Arts Centre, site specific work in unexpected places, and of course the inevitable schmooze at the parties where Vancouver’s dance community comes  together for a festival of all that is terpsichorian.

Vanessa Goodman of the Contingency Plan says, "Donna Spencer, (Artistic Director of Dancing on the Edge) has been instrumental in seeing 'What Belongs to You' come to be. Dancing on the Edge provides the opportunity to show new work.”

Based on Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs, 'What Belongs To You' shows at the Scotia Bank Dance Centre. The Farris Theatre stage is filled with balloons that dancers Lisa Gelley, Josh Martin, Erika Mitsuhashi, Jane Osborne and Bevin Poole move through. “There is a constant element of surprise as the environment is constantly changing.”

Solo/Soul created and dance by Karen Jamieson, also at the Scotiabank Dance Centre, explores the transformation from inside out, the body as a temporary garment, and the transition from muscular to energy body that is demanded by the process of aging. This new work, seeks to provide audiences with opportunities or doorways to experience the dance.

“It’s been an incredible process with other dance artists of various aesthetics, traditions and age in discovering how to dance from the energy within,” shared Jamieson. Jennifer Mascall, Lee Su-Feh, Serge Bennathan, Peter Bingham, Josh Martin, Margaret Grenier, Meredith Kalaman, Darcy McMurray, dramaturge DD Kugler, composer John Korsrud, photographer Chris Randle, videographer Josh Hite provided the research for the finished product.

Chapel Arts provides a new venue for Dancing on the Edge in a co-production with MascallDance entitled The Three Cornered Hat. A collaborative effort with dancers Lara Barclay, Amber Funk Barton, Darcy McMurray, Billy Marchenski, Chris Wright and  Stefan Smulovitz (music), Bill Pechet (set design), Condelario Andrade (Videography) , Barbara Adler (storyteller) John Macfarlane (lighting design), this journey into “the space between” reimagines the super funky Chapel Arts at 7:00 pm for 6 shows.

Dusk Dances at Portside Park; Japanese Butoh at Wreck Beach with clothing options in place for audience as well; a moveable feast in the Firehall Arts Centre Courtyard: a Dance Machine at  Hopbopshop or dance in the outdoor SFU Woodward’s Atrium are all free.

And then there are the opening night, July 3, and the closing night, July 12, parties that sees the über hip dance community gathering for fun and frolic.  

New to Dancing on the Edge this year is a Dance Passport, which allows audiences to embark a live performance ‘scavenger hunt’ to the five site-specific shows downtown and collect stamps along the way. Once they have three stamps, they are eligible for a free ticket to a show at the festival!

More info:




DUSK DANCES: July 4 – 6, 7pm | Portside Park

A magical evening with live music featuring a Japanese Butoh-inspired work by Denise Fujiwara, the hilarious synchronized mini pool swimming champs, an ode to the West Coast rain forest and a fusion of contemporary dance and traditional Cree dance from Compaigni V’ni Dansi. Hosted by Tara Cheyenne Friedenberg.


DANCE MACHINE: July 8 – 12 | The Hopbopshop (Maclean & Powell)

Come play with us! Explore the giant interactive dance machine created by Lee Su-Feh, Justine Chambers & Jesse Garlick. FREE, drop-in.


CRUMBLING: July 11, 8:15pm | Firehall Arts Centre Courtyard

A Butoh piece choreographed by Vancouver’s Barbara Bourget (Kokoro Dance) for Mathew Romantini.


FEAST: July 12, 8:15pm | Firehall Arts Centre Courtyard

A visceral, dream-like moveable feast of performance by Katie Devries starring 10 of Vancouver’s finest dancers.


VERITAS. TRUTH: July 9 – 11, 12.15pm + 1pm | SFU Woodward’s Atrium

Developed with Modus Operandi dancers, this piece looks at the human desire to seek out unity & order.


WRECK BEACH BUTOH: July 12, 11:45am | Wreck Beach #4 Trailhead


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