The Voice of Canadian Dance

The Canadian Dance Assembly (CDA) is the voice of the professional dance sector in Canada and promotes a healthy, sustainable environment in which professional dance practice can grow and thrive.  CDA cultivates a strong national voice for Canadian professional dance and supports the development of resources for this field of artistic expression. Through conferences, workshops, and networking events we connect the dance community from coast to coast, building a cohesive and dynamic milieu.

 The Canadian Dance Assembly has initiated a multi-year investigation to re-imagine service for the dance sector and an organizing structure to deliver on that service. Help us by completing this survey!
View Our Events Calendar

Be sure to check out the events calendar for the latest in conferences, festivals and professional development opportunities.

  • 36th Annual Alberta Dance Festival 07-Sep-2017

    September 7-9th & 14-16th, 2017 Presented by Dancers’ Studio West, the 36th..

  • 36th Annual Alberta Dance Festival 14-Sep-2017

    September 7-9th & 14-16th, 2017 Presented by Dancers’ Studio West, the..

  • Fall for Dance North 04-Oct-2017

    October 4th-6th, 2017 Sony Centre for the Performing Arts..

  • Canadian Dance Assembly National Conference 2017 / Conférence nationale 2017 19-Oct-2017

    October 19 and 20 - Calgary, AB The Canadian Dance Assembly is pleased to host its next N..

    • Fall for Dance North Announces Programming Details



      - Three unique programs each night with all tickets at $15 -

      Highlights include Three World Premiere Festival Commissions, a new work by Robert Binet of the National Ballet of Canada, World-Record Breaking 72-Person Ball Passing with an all Toronto cast closing out each night and more!


      New partnership with Union Station expands the Festival to bring various dance and music events to the station’s West Wing

      Click here for the 2017 Fall For Dance North trailer

      TORONTO (June 19, 2017) – One of the most anticipated festivals in Toronto returns for its third season and the programming lineup will have audiences “jazzed” up. Fall for Dance North (FFDN) announces a dynamic lineup of performances taking place over three nights at the Sony Centre for the Performing Arts from October 4 to 6, 2017. Celebrating Canadian dancers and choreographers in Canada’s 150th year, FFDN, co-presented by the Sony Centre for the Performing Arts, once again features 10 internationally acclaimed dance companies from Canada and around the world. Each night will offer a unique program with highlights that include world premiere festival commissions from Robert Binet of the National Ballet of Canada, seven-time world champion Irish dancer Michaela Hinds, and the ambitious world-record breaking 72-Person Ball Passing community dance project cast from auditions throughout Toronto.

      To continue reading please click here

    • Survey on Re-imagining Service Organizations: Decolonizing Canadian Dance | Sondage sur la reconfiguration des organismes de service et la décolonisation de la danse au Canada.


      *la version française suivra

      Please take our survey! Click here

      This is an update to our last blog post, now that we’re midway through our research for “Re-imagining Service Organizations: Decolonizing Canadian Dance.” We’ve spent the past few months filling in our knowledge of the dance sector and its service organizations, interviewing a sample of the service organizations themselves, and preparing to launch a sector-wide survey about how well the service organizations are meeting your needs. Read more on the survey below, or click here to take the survey right away

      Here is a review what we’ve learned so far and why we need your input to help us round out the picture.

      The Canadian dance service ecosystem has gone through numerous configurations over the years, alternately fracturing due to competing needs within the sector, consolidating as a result of funding cuts, and giving birth to new organizations to serve contemporary needs. This is not the first time that the organizing structure of dance services in Canada has been under review, and it’s important that this project learns important lessons from the past. We’re starting from a good place, given the extensive amount of research that precedes us, not least the Canadian Dance Mapping Study.  

      Dance is frequently cited as the least resourced of the arts sectors in Canada. This grievance also extends to its service organizations. What’s more, the resources that do exist are rarely equitably distributed across the sector. While dance service organizations have historically provided much-needed support for dancers and dance organizations working in ballet and contemporary dance in the major cities, practices such as Indigenous dance, racialized dance, disability dance, and dance outside the major cities have not received the same level of support. This historical inequality of service within the sector has resulted in the uneven playing field for different dance forms we see today.  
      Despite many valiant efforts to make the system fairer, some parts of the dance world continue to be better served than others. There is inequity in representation, funding, political power, and resources. Dancers and dance companies in the major cities have a wealth of services at their doorstep; those in rural regions typically need to look farther afield. Marginalized groups tend to be underrepresented on the boards and staff of service organizations, and thus have fewer seats at the table when it comes to decision-making power.  

      The service organizations also face challenges in adapting themselves to provide a more equitable offer for the sector. With low membership numbers from marginalized groups, it is difficult for dance service organizations to prioritize their needs; however, unless they start recognizing these specific needs, they will have difficulty attracting more of these members. Moreover, a lack of reliable data hampers their efforts to understand and advocate for the whole of the dance sector.  

      This is what we want to help CDA understand in more detail via the survey we have launched. Our survey asks about how much you value dance service organizations in their current state; how they could change to better serve your needs; and how well they’re doing in being open, inclusive, and reflective of Canada’s identity. An online survey can be a relatively blunt tool, but there’s also plenty of space for comment and feedback. ~  James Doeser and Melissa Wong

      Your responses will play an important role in helping us feed back to the service organizations about their relevance to the sector. They will also be a vital component of the discussions as the project progresses. The more people who complete the survey, the more useful it will be. Please tell your colleagues and friends in the sector. We’d love to know what they think.


      Participer à notre sondage! Cliquez ici.

      Pour faire suite à la publication de notre dernier billet, nous vous informons que nous en sommes à mi-parcours dans notre recherche sur la reconfiguration des organismes de service et la décolonisation de la danse au Canada. Nous avons consacré ces derniers mois à colliger des éléments d'information sur le secteur de la danse et ses organismes de service. Nous avons interviewé quelques organismes et avons préparé un sondage destiné à l'ensemble du secteur pour vérifier si les organismes de service répondent aux besoins de leurs membres. Reviendrez là-dessus après avoir lire le contexte qui suit, ou prenez le sondage maintenant ici

      Voyons d'abord plutôt ce que nous avons appris à ce jour et pourquoi nous avons besoin de votre aide pour dresser un tableau complet de la situation.    

      L'écosystème des organismes de service de la danse au Canada a connu de nombreuses formes au fil des ans, tantôt se disloquant en raison d'autres priorités dans le secteur, tantôt se consolidant par suite de réductions des crédits et donnant naissance à de nouveaux organismes pour répondre aux besoins du moment. Ce n'est pas la première fois que la structure organisationnelle des services destinés au secteur de la danse au Canada fait l'objet d'un examen ; il importe donc que nous tirions toutes les leçons utiles du passé. Nous disposons d'une bonne base d'information avec la quantité importante de travaux de recherche qui a été effectuée avant nous, et notamment l'Étude cartographique de la danse au Canada.  

      On dit souvent que la danse figure parmi les secteurs artistiques les moins subventionnés au Canada. Et cette remarque ne s'applique pas moins à ses organismes de service. Et qui plus est, les ressources disponibles sont rarement distribuées de façon équitable dans le secteur. Si les organismes de service de la danse ont toujours offert un soutien nécessaire aux danseurs et aux organismes de la danse qui travaillent en ballet et en danse contemporaine dans les grandes villes, des pratiques comme celles de la danse autochtone, de la danse des personnes racialisées, de la danse des personnes handicapées et de la danse hors des grands centres n'ont pas fait l'objet d'autant de soutien que les autres. Cette situation d'inéquité, présente encore de nos jours au niveau des services dans le secteur, a donné lieu à des inéquités sur le terrain pour certaines pratiques de la danse.  

      Malgré des efforts courageux pour remédier à la situation, des créneaux de la danse sont toujours mieux desservis que d'autres. Les inéquités se manifestent sur le plan de la représentation, du financement, du pouvoir politique et des ressources. Les danseurs et les compagnies de danse des grands centres urbains disposent d'une foule de services à portée de la main, tandis que ceux des régions rurales doivent chercher plus loin leur profit. Les groupes marginalisés sont habituellement sous-représentés au sein des conseils d'administration et du personnel des organismes de service ; ils n'ont pas voix au chapitre au même degré.  

      Les organismes de service doivent aussi savoir s'adapter pour fournir des services plus équitables au secteur. Comme les groupes marginalisés adhèrent rarement aux organismes de service, ceux-ci ont de la difficulté à donner la priorité aux besoins de ceux-là. Or, à défaut de reconnaître ces besoins particuliers, les organismes de service ont du mal à attirer davantage de membres des groupes marginalisés. En plus, étant donné la pénurie de données fiables, les organismes ont de la difficulté à comprendre et à défendre les intérêts de l'ensemble du secteur.  

      Voilà exactement ce que nous aidons l'ACD à comprendre en plus de détails dans le cadre du sondage que nous avons lancé. Notre sondage concerne la valeur que vous accordez aux organismes de service du secteur de la danse dans l'état actuel des choses ; vous pouvez proposer des suggestions pour mieux répondre aux besoins du secteur, pour améliorer leur degré d'ouverture, d'inclusivité et de fidélité par rapport à l'identité canadienne. Les sondages en ligne peuvent parfois être rudimentaires, mais le nôtre comprend amplement de zones pour les observations. ~ James Doeser et Melissa Wong 


      Nous nous servirons de vos réponses pour informer les organismes de service quant à leur utilité pour le secteur. Vos opinions formeront une partie essentielle des discussions prévues par la suite. Plus vous serez nombreux à répondre au sondage, plus l'information ainsi recueillie sera utile. N'hésitez pas à en parler à vos collègues et amis du secteur. Nous aimerions recueillir aussi leur opinion.    

    • School of Contemporary Dancers: International Exchange / School of Contemporary Dancers: Échange internationale

      15-Jun-2017 In celebration of the 150th Anniversary of Canada, The Professional Program of The School of Contemporary Dancers is proud to collaborate with the Educafin Program of the State Government of Guanajuato for this special performance project. We are delighted to honour Canada’s highly-valued relationship with Mexico and celebrate this milestone anniversary on Canada Day, July 1, 2017 in Leon, Guanajuato.

      This performance presents the graduating emerging artists of The Professional Program of The School of Contemporary Dancers, including Leon resident, Ilse Torres Orozco, along with guest emerging contemporary dance artists from Leon.

      The following Canadian contemporary dance artistic directors have gifted choreographic works for this exciting project: Brent Lott: Winnipeg’s Contemporary Dancers, Jolene Bailie: Gearshifting Performance Works, Gaile Petursson-Hiley: Mouvement/Winnipeg Dance Projects, Odette Heyn: Odette Heyn-Projects, Stephanie Ballard: Stephanie Ballard and Dancers, and Constance Cooke: SOS Dance.


      Pour célébrer le 150e anniversaire du Canada, le programme professionnel de la School of Contemporary Dancers est fière de collaborer avec le Programme Educafin du gouvernement de l'état de Guanajuato pour ce projet prestations de danse. Nous sommes heureux d'honorer la relation importante du Canada avec le Mexique et de célébrer cet anniversaire jalon le jour de la fête du Canada, le 1er juillet 2017, à Leon, Guanajuato, Mexique. 

      Ce spectacle présentera les jeunes artistes émergents nouvellement diplômés du programme professionnel de la School of Contemporary Dancers, y inclus une résidente de Leon, Ilse Torres Orozco, accompagnés d'artistes émergents en danse modernes de Leon. 

      Les directeurs artistiques des troupes de danse contemporaine canadiennes suivant ont gracieusement offert leurs chorégraphies pour ce projet: Brent Lott: Winnipeg's Contemporary Dancers, Jolene Bailie: Gearshifting Performance Works, Gaile Petursson-Hiley: Mouvement/ Winnipeg Dance Projects, Odette Heyn: Odette Heyn-Projects, Stephanie Ballard: Stephanie Ballard and Dancers, et Constance Cooke: SOS Dance.

    • UCalgary’s School of Creative and Performing Arts Season Announcement


      Vibrant dance, drama, music, and interdisciplinary performances take the stage in 2017-18 

      The School of Creative and Performing Arts (SCPA) at the University of Calgary has announced an exciting program of 20 dance, drama and music performances for the 2017-18 season.

      The season combines familiar discipline-specific programming with ambitious new interdisciplinary initiatives. The wide variety of productions, performances and presentations that make up the season showcases recognized international talent, key Canadian artists, and the school’s impressive roster of remarkable faculty, staff and students.

      “The School has evolved and matured since it was formed in 2013, and this is evident in this year’s programming,” says SCPA Director Bruce Barton. “There’s an increased clarity of focus, a new scale of ambition, and a strong emphasis on exploring the place and function of the arts in our current historical moment. The creative and performing arts have never been more relevant and important for contemporary societies, and the SCPA is exploring that role in so many ways this season.”


      Dance Series: including a special 3 week collaboration with visiting Polish artists for ProSeries
      Drama Series: welcoming Haysam Kadri of The Shakespeare Company to direct Mary Zimmerman’s stunning Metamorphoses
      Monday Night Jazz Series: with Toronto’s acclaimed Dueling Piano duo Eddie and Quincy Bullen 
      Faculty and Friends Concert Series: featuring The Double Hook, with original performances and compositions by SCPA faculty.

      Find the full listing of season events that run September to May HERE

    Become a Member

    Becoming a member of CDA means having YOUR needs represented on a national level.

    Member Directory

    The Canadian Dance Assembly is pleased to offer a searchable online directory of its members. Use the search functions below to sort by standing council, city or province.

    Canadian Dance Assembly
    55 Mill Street, Suite 312
    Case Goods Building #74
    Toronto, ON M5A 3C4
    Tel: 1.416.515.8444
    Fax: 1.416.515.9444