CDA | ACD

The Canadian Dance Assembly (CDA) is governed by a National Council of up to 15 members.  The Council is currently composed of the Chairs of the seven Standing Councils, who are elected by, and represent, their Council members.  The National Council additionally appoints up to seven Members at Large, to help balance sectoral, geographic and cultural diversity, and to ensure a good balance of skills, gender and generations. Please note that the officers of the National Council are appointed by the National Council at the first meeting following the Annual General Meeting.

Committees - CDA manages various committees that work alongside the National Council and staff to maintain the activities of the organization. The committees for the 2018/19 year are as follows: Advocacy, Pluralism, Conference and Finance.

For further details or if a member wishes to join any of these committees they should express their interest to the office at 416-515-8444 or email aviva@dancecanada.net.

National Council 2018-2019

National Council would like to thank outgoing Directors Jason Dubois, Kevin Ormsby and Candice Pike for their six years of service on CDA's National Council.

Executive Council

Co-Presidents


Margaret Grenier

Executive and Artistic Director, Dancers of Damelahamid
Vancouver, British Columbia

Margaret is the Executive and Artistic Director for the Dancers of Damelahamid as well as a lead dancer, singer, and composer. She choreographed the full-length works Setting the Path 2004 and Sharing the Spirit 2007, which toured internationally to New Zealand in 2008 and the 2010 World Expo in Shanghai, China. Her other works include Visitors Who Never Left as a site specific work in 2009, Dancing our Stories 2010, Spirit Transforming 2012, In Abundance 2014, and Flicker 2016. Margaret has directed and produced the Coastal First Nations Dance Festival since 2008. Margaret holds a Masters of Arts in Arts Education at Simon Fraser University. She was a sessional instructor at Simon Fraser University for Foundations in Aboriginal Education, Language, and Culture in 2007.   Margaret was a faculty member for the Banff Centre Indigenous Dance Residency 2013. Margaret presented at the World Indigenous Peoples Conference on Education 2008, 2011, 2015, and 2017. She serves on the Board for the Canadian Dance Assembly and the BC Alliance for Arts and Culture.

Soraya Peerbaye
Arts Consultant 
Toronto, Ontario

Soraya Peerbaye has more than 20 years of experience in the arts in the field of policy development, program management and advocacy; she has worked in dance in a collaborative capacity as a producer, project manager, curator, and dramaturge for companies such as Anandam Dancetheatre, Nova Dance (Nova Bhattacharya), Compañía Carmen Romero, and the Toronto Rhythm Initiative (Allison Toffan). She was the Dance Officer at the Toronto Arts Council, and prior to that the Equity Officer at the Canada Council for the Arts, advocating for artists of colour and diasporic artistic and cultural practices. Peerbaye has also acted as a consultant for a range of cultural entities, including the Department of Canadian Heritage, Orchestras Canada, the Canadian Alliance of Dance Artists and Cultural Pluralism in the Performing Arts Movement Ontario. She is a poet and the author of Poems for the Advisory Committee on Antarctic Names (Goose Lane Editions, 2009), nominated for the Gerald Lampert Award, and Tell: Poems for a Girlhood (Pedlar Press, 2015), shortlisted for the Griffin Poetry Prize and winner of the Trillium Poetry Award. She is currently the Programming and Mentorship Director at Jumblies Theatre.

Vice President

Barry Hughson
Executive Director, The National Ballet of Canada
Toronto, Ontario

Barry Hughson joined The National Ballet of Canada as Executive Director in 2014. Since that time, the company has accelerated its trajectory of artistic growth, fiscal responsibility, community engagement, and international presence, including landmark tours to New York’s Lincoln Center, Théâtre des Champs Elysées in Paris and the Mariinsky and Stanislavsky Theatres in Russia.

Mr. Hughson began his career as a dancer with The Washington (DC) Ballet, where he performed classical and contemporary repertoire at the Kennedy Center and on tour throughout the world. For the last 25 years, he has served as an executive leader at Connecticut’s Warner Theatre, Complexions Contemporary Ballet in New York City, New Jersey’s American Repertory Ballet, The Atlanta Ballet, Boston Ballet, and The National Ballet of Canada.

As an arts advocate, consultant and educator, Mr. Hughson has had teaching and speaking engagements in the USA, Europe and South America. He is the Vice Chair of Dance/USA, North America’s largest service organization for professional dance. He is a founding member of Dance/USA’s National Leadership Council for Dance and has served as a mentor to emerging arts executives through the Institute for Leadership Training. In January 2015, in partnership with Dance/USA, Mr. Hughson spearheaded the first ever meeting of North American and European dance leaders, bringing together 22 administrators from nine countries for two days of meetings at the Royal Opera House Covent Garden in London. In Canada, Mr. Hughson is a Vice Chair of the Canadian Dance Assembly and serves on the Steering Committee for the Canadian Arts Summit.

Treasurer

Freelancers and Consultants Standing Council Chair

Sue Edworthy
Marketing and Communications Specialist, Sue Edworthy Arts Planning
Toronto, Ontario

Sue Edworthy has worked in the non-profit performing arts for nearly twenty years. Her passion for the performing arts has led her to stints as a director, event coordinator and arts administrator and she is now respected and sought after in Toronto as a marketing and communications specialist. Sue is a former Board Member for TAPA, was co-chair for Artsvote 2014, and spent 2 years of a seven-year stint as Vice President of The Toronto Fringe Festival. She is a Harold Award recipient, received the 2012 and 2013 Char-PR Prize for PR, and is the 2015 recipient of the Leonard McHardy and John Harvey Award for Excellence in Arts Administration. She runs Sue Edworthy Arts Planning, a marketing, producing and strategic planning company for the Toronto arts community.

Elected Chairs

Dance Companies Standing Council Chair  

Fannie Bellefeuille
Executive Director, RUBBERBANDance Group
Montreal, Québec

Fannie Bellefeuille’s career with RUBBERBANDance Group began nearly eight years ago. After being appointed as the company’s administrative director in 2010, she was promoted to general manager in 2015. Fannie graduated from the theatre program of UQAM in 2004. She gained experience in arts administration while directing her own theatre company, Collectif Ikaria. She then completed a certificate in the management of cultural organizations at HEC Montréal, and followed this with a master’s degree in the same program. Parallel to her administrative activities, she has acted in live theatre and television plays since 1992. She also wrote and produced several plays and scripted two short films. She has won several awards for her work, including the Raymond Blais writing prize for Stockholm, la nuit (2007), and was chosen for the prestigious ISPA Canada Fellowship Program (2013–2015). Fannie has made a point of giving back to the arts community on an ongoing basis, offering her expertise to emerging companies as a mentor and participating in various arts council juries. She is currently treasurer of the board of directors of the Regroupement québécois de la danse and a member of the finance committee of ISPA. Recently, she was elected to the National Council of the Canadian Dance Assembly.

Research & Writing / Training & Education Standing Council Chair


Ann Kipling Brown
Professor Emeritus, University of Regina
Regina, Saskatchewan

Ann Kipling Brown, Ph.D. is Professor Emerita of the University of Regina, having worked for many years in the Arts Education program in the Faculty of Education. She continues to teach, research and publish on dance pedagogy, the integration of notation in dance programs, the application of technology in dance education, and the role of dance in the child’ and adult’s lived world. In her professional and community service Ann has served for several years on the Advisory Committee and the Reference Committee for Arts Education for Saskatchewan Education. She has been actively involved in the Saskatchewan cultural community as well as serving on several international committees as well as attending conferences concerned with arts/dance education, including Dance and the Child International (daCi), World Dance Alliance (WDA) and The World Alliance for Arts Education (WAAE). Ann is committed to the research and networking in arts education with a focus on dance education in the public and private sectors having attended local, provincial, national and international conferences and symposia.


Ballet Companies Standing Council Chair 

Susan Chalmers-Gauvin 
Chief Executive Officer, Atlantic Ballet Theatre of Canada 
Moncton, New Brunswick

Susan Chalmers-Gauvin, Co-Founder and CEO of Atlantic Ballet Atlantique Canada, is a strategic, results-driven leader with over twenty years of management experience in strategic planning, and community and program development, including leadership roles in the health sector and strategic counsel to First Nations.

Ms. Chalmers-Gauvin has been responsible for the organizational and financial development of Atlantic Ballet Atlantique Canada since its establishment in 2001, bringing it from a start-up enterprise to an international touring company and positioning the company as an innovation hub for arts and public engagement. Ms.Chalmers-Gauvin is committed to the critical role the arts play in engaging communities in creative learning and has successfully established cross disciplinary partnerships with the education, health, ICT and social sectors. She was inducted in to the Order of New Brunswick in 2017. She is the recipient of Top 50 CEO’s Award, Atlantic Canada; Canada’s TOP 100 Award-Canada’s Most Powerful Women, the Women’s Executive Network (WXN). She has also received an Honourary Doctorate of Letters, the University of New Brunswick and the YWCA Women of Distinction Award.


Dance Presenters Standing Council Chair 

Calla Lachance
Executive Director, Neighbourhood Dance Works
St. John's, Newfoundland

Calla Lachance is a passionate dance artist, educator, advocate and arts administrator living and working in St John’s, Newfoundland and Labrador. In 2008 she became the Executive Director of Neighbourhood Dance Works (the province’s premier presenter and generator of new dance experiences). In this role Calla works alongside the NDW community to develop the Annual Festival of New Dance and other programming that for 3 decades has generated a lively, engaged regional dance scene.

Through NDW’s programs and partnerships Calla has helped expand the possibilities for increased touring across our region and she has played an active role connecting local artists with artists from other regions, which has expanded the potential for more exchange and collaboration amongst regional artists and presenters.

Calla is the visionary behind NDW's successful Canada Council - New Chapter project, an unprecedented event that will see up to 22 dance artists, each from Newfoundland and Labrador, return home to research, create and present new work under the artistic direction of Christopher House and Anne Troake, and in collaboration with Tedd Robinson, Lois Brown, Tedi Tafel, Amy Bowring and Colleen Quigley. The project will commenced in summer 2017 on the shores of St John's, NL and will be presented in St John's and Toronto in Fall of 2019.


Independent Artists Standing Council Chair

Brandy Leary
Artistic Director, Anandam Dance
Toronto, Ontario

Brandy creates contemporary performances through the body and is active as a dancer, choreographer, aerialist, writer, arts advocate, community cultivator, space maker, Artistic Director, educator and curator. Her performance works have been produced and performed in Canada, Europe, India, South Africa and the USA in theatres, urban environments, festivals, museums, art galleries and isolated landscapes. Brandy founded Anandam Dancetheatre as an umbrella structure for her performance projects and is its Artistic Director. She is a founder and Co-Director of Collective Space (an alternative performance and rehearsal venue in Toronto’s west end), Founder and Co-Artistic Director of CCAFT (Contemporary Circus Arts Festival of Toronto), developer of Anandam’s Audience In Residence Program and curator/co-producer of the Body Brake dance series at Theatre Passe Muraille. Brandy is a triple Shastri Indo Canadian Fellow, a Chalmers Professional Development Awardee, a visiting faculty artist for the Shiv Nadar University  MFA Program (India), a Toronto Arts Council Cultural Leadership Fellow for 2016,  has been twice shortlisted for the KM Hunter Award in Dance 2009 and 2011 was a 2013 Multi-Disciplinary Dance Artist Nominee for the Soulpepper Dance Awards and is a Toronto Arts Council Cultural Leadership Fellow for 2016. 

Service and Support Standing Council Chair

Nicole Owens
Executive Director, Dance Manitoba
Winnipeg, Manitoba 

Nicole’s passion for dance started at an early age where she studied a myriad of styles. She then graduated from the Senior Professional Program of the School of Contemporary Dancers in 1998.

After graduating, Nicole assumed the role of General School Coordinator and Administrator of the School of Contemporary Dancers. While there she began her performing career working with Mouvement / Winnipeg Dance Projects with choreographer Gaile Petursson-Hiley on a number of productions and in 2010 with Stephanie Ballard and Dancers with the full evening work Homeagain. Nicole was a founding member of NAfro Dance Productions, working with the company and Artistic Director, Casimiro Nhussi, for six seasons.

Nicole has served as juror on both the Manitoba and Winnipeg Arts Councils, and continues to be a guest instructor at local dance institutions and schools across the province, and also teaches in the RWB School’s Recreational Division, Adult Program.

Nicole strives to bring her experience from all aspects of her career to further the scope of programming and projects of Dance Manitoba, where she has been serving as the Executive Director for over a decade.


Members at Large

Peggy Reddin
Executive Director, Confederation Centre of the Arts
New Dominion, Prince Edward Island

Peggy Reddin is Director of Arts Education at the Confederation Centre of the Arts in Charlottetown, PEI. She is the program coordinator and instructor for the Dance Performance and Theatre Performance programs in the Holland College School of Performing Arts, a partnership with Confederation Centre. Ms. Reddin co-founded dance umbrella (now part of the Youth Education Program of Confederation Centre) in 1988 with Julia Sauvé and has served as its Director since 1996. She is a graduate of the National Ballet School Teacher Training Program and holds a Bachelor of Arts (Philosophy) degree from U.P.E.I. Ms. Reddin has taught with Charlottetown Ballet Theatre, DancEast, and Charlottetown Festival Young Company, and has directed and choreographed numerous events on the Island. She was also the project founder for Dance with D.A.W.N., an innovative dance program for women with disabilities. In addition to her work in arts education, Ms. Reddin is very involved in the local arts community. She has worked in collaboration with Theatre P.E.I., the P.E.I. Symphony Orchestra, and the U.P.E.I. Music Department, among others. She has served on the board of the PEI Council of the Arts and Culture PEI, and as a juror for the New Brunswick Arts Board and the PEI Council of the Arts.


Cliff Le Jeune
Executive Director, Dance Nova Scotia
Halifax, Nova Scotia

Cliff Le Jeune is currently the Executive Director of Dance Nova Scotia. He has been a mainstay in the cultural life of Eastern Canada for over 35 years, as an actor, singer, dancer, director, choreographer, teacher/coach and was Artistic Director of the Stephenville Theatre Festival in Newfoundland for five years. He was a founding and principal dancer with Nova Dance Theatre of Halifax as well as duet partner with independent dancer/choreographer Leica Hardy. As an actor he has performed on stages across the country in musical, classical and contemporary productions and has created roles in many original Canadian musicals. Cliff is also a solo cabaret artist and has gained an international following for his interpretations of the songs of Leonard Cohen. He has been featured in concert on CBC and in 2005, along with Halifax’s Blue Engine String Quartet, he recorded a CD of Cohen’s songs entitled If It Be Your Will, which Cohen himself has called “a sublime gift”. In 2014, he left the theatre to take over as Interim ED at Dance Nova Scotia and was appointed Executive Director in 2015. He currently sits on the boards of Kinetic Studio, Kazan Co-Op Theatre, LPAS (Link Performing Arts Society) and the Cultural Federations of Nova Scotia. “Dance is for everyone. My goal is to make that statement a reality in our province. From elementary school children to seniors, we all deserve to know the joy of dance. That is my mission as Executive Director.”

Michèle Moss - Shared Member at Large position 
Associate Professor, Dance, University of Calgary
Calgary, Alberta

Michèle Moss (BEd, MA) is a dancer, choreographer and community educator. She is currently a member of the professorial serving the Faculty of Arts/SCPA-Dance as an associate professor at the University of Calgary. Her dedication to discovering the nature of jazz dance and jazz music has led her to circle the globe. She began her ethnographic research in 1986 searching for the roots of North American jazz dance. As tenured faculty Michèle enjoys a career that is diverse. As co-founder of concert jazz dance company and community school, DJD (Decidedly Jazz Danceworks) in Calgary, Alberta, she enjoyed a performing career with the company but also created work from 1986 up to a most recent contribution in 2017. She created work as an independent choreographer in the Dancers’ Studio West annual choreographic festival since 1989. She also served as artistic director and choreographic festival from 2000-2005. Her research mostly takes the form of creation projects, but also includes textual projects. She is frequent conference presenter for numerous organizations including African Studies Association (ASA) and Congress on Research in Dance (CORD) and recently presented at CADD (Collegium for African Diaspora Dance) in Durham, North Carolina at Duke University.

She greatly enjoys her UCalgary teaching assignments, embodied and textual research, choreographic commissions, international teaching assignments and the many opportunities to conduct ethnographic research in the field. Her textual projects including co-authoring chapters, with Dr. Jill Crosby, on the history of jazz in a Feb 2014 publication from the University Press of Florida called Jazz Dance: Roots and Branches. Over the years her work has been supported by Canada Council for the Arts, Alberta Foundation for the Arts, Heritage Canada as well she has received numerous UCalgary research grants. She considers herself a citizen of the world; born in the UK of Jamaican and British parents, raised in Montréal, resident of Calgary and frequent flyer.

Spirit Synott - (Shared Member at Large position with Rachel de Silva Gorma)
Actor, Dancer, Performer
Toronto, Ontario 

Spirit Synott is an actor, dancer, and visual artist whose innovative, cross-cultural work engages our differences and our individuality as well as our commonalities. As an actor, Spirit’s work has been featured in Degrassi, and in Jani Lauzon’s short Just One Word, which premiered at the 2017 ImagineNative Film Festival. Spirit’s dance work has been highlighted in films such as Hearts of Tango, and In Search of Joy. 2017 dance performances include Invictus Games fundraising and the Toronto Latin American Film Festival. In 2018 she was commissioned as a resource person to contribute to the education of TDSB Arts Co-Op, also hired as part of the team of PVD Porch View Dances as rehearsal assistant/director and understudy for ec-co-sys-tem group. In 2014, Spirit was artist in residence at Ryerson’s Dance Program, facilitating the choreography and performance of a work with 2nd year dance students for Social Justice Week. In 2009, Spirit performed in the Olympic Torch Toronto celebration. As a dancer, Spirit has worked with Debajehmujig Theatre Group (Indigenous dance theatre); Lisandro Gomez (Argentinian Tango); Rachel Gorman (contemporary dance theatre); Anthony Guerra (African/Caribbean folk); MUUVE (wheelchair dance); OMO Dance Company (modern ballet); Almond Small (modern); and Ronald Taylor/Canboulay (African/Caribbean modern). Spirit has created and performed numerous solo works and duets with Perry Augustine and Aaron Water. Spirit’s extensive multidisciplinary arts training includes a Master of Inclusive Design and an AOCA from OCAD University. Spirit trained as an actor with Actors Equity Showcase, Toronto Theatre Alliance, Actors’ Co-op, and Sears & Switzer; and in dance with Debbie Wilson. Spirit has served on the Diversity Committee and has been elected to the Board of ACTRA (Alliance of Canadian Cinema, Television and Radio Artists). In 2014, Spirit was awarded the Canadian Labour Congress Carol McGregor Award for her disability rights activism.

Rachel da Silva Gorman(Shared Member at Large position with Spirit Synott)
Associate Professor and Graduate Program Director in the Critical Disability Studies, York University  
Toronto, Ontario 

Rachel da Silva Gorman is Associate Professor and Graduate Program Director in the Critical Disability Studies at York University, and an artist working in dance theatre, performance, and curating. Da Silva Gorman’s research/creation engages theory and method from fine arts, cultural studies, and social sciences; and focuses on transnational social movements, anticolonial aesthetics, anti-racist disability theory, and critiques of ideology. Her writing has appeared in Auto|Biography Studies, American Quarterly, Somatechnics, thirdspace, and the Journal of Literary and Cultural Disability Studies. Da Silva Gorman has created and choreographed 14 dance-theatre and site-specific productions, ten of which have been remounted or screened at festivals. The Globe and Mail’s Paula Citron called Gorman’s dance theatre production Waking the Living “compelling…a disturbing and riveting reality check” and described her site-specific production Passing Dark as a “melancholy journey… of intense sadness.” She has been a movement director for several solo theatre artists and collectives, and she teaches choreographic process in disability, BIPOC, and queer arts communities. Since 2009, she has been on the curatorial committee at A Space Gallery in Toronto, where she has curated four exhibitions, and has participated in programming six exhibitions a year. In 2017, she received a grant from the Canada Council for the Arts for a performance-based research-creation project Year Five of the Revolution.


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