About Us

National Council
2020-2021

This is our board of directors and they work to uphold the CDA by laws and guidance for the sector. We are always welcoming diverse leaders in dance and encourage those interested in joining the National Council to express their interest to info@cda-acd.ca. Details about the role, open positions and terms of commitment will be shared. The CDA bylaws and board governance are also available to view here.

Executive Council

President Dance Companies Standing Council Chair

Fannie Bellefeuille

Executive Director, RUBBERBAND  |  Montreal, Québec

Fannie Bellefeuille’s career with RUBBERBAND began more than ten years ago. After being appointed as the company’s administrative director in 2010, she was promoted to Executive Director 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 master’s degree in the management of cultural organizations at HEC Montréal. 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.

Photo Credits : Isabel Rancier
Vice President Ballet Companies Standing Council Chair

Barry Hughson

Executive Director, The National Ballet of Canada  |  Toronto, Ontario

Barry Hughson joined The National Ballet of Canada as Executive Director in 2014, partnering with Karen Kain to accelerate the company’s trajectory of artistic growth, fiscal responsibility, community engagement and international acclaim.

In 1988, Mr. Hughson began his professional career as a dancer with The Washington Ballet, performing at the Kennedy Center and internationally. After retiring as a performer, he served as Executive Director at a variety of arts institutions in the US, including The Warner Theatre, Complexions Contemporary Ballet, American Repertory Ballet, Atlanta Ballet and Boston Ballet.

Mr. Hughson is deeply engaged with the international arts community and is sought-after as a speaker at industry events around the world. For nine years, he served on the board of Dance/USA, North America’s largest service organization for professional dance. In partnership with Dance/USA and The Royal Ballet, Mr. Hughson spearheaded the first meeting of North American and European executive dance leadership in 2015.

In Canada, Mr. Hughson serves as Vice-Chair of the Canadian Dance Assembly and as a member of the Coordinating Committee for Respectful Workplaces in the Arts, where he chaired the working group responsible for the development of a nationwide Code of Conduct for the Live Performing Arts.

Treasurer

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 disciplinarypartnerships 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.

Secretary

David Warburton (김모세)

Managing Director, Royal Winnipeg Ballet  |  Winnipeg, Manitoba

David Warburton (김모세) is the Managing Director for the Company at the Royal Winnipeg Ballet (RWB). A leading cultural institution, the RWB has earned a national and international reputation for its impassioned artistry and technical virtuosity and has received widespread critical acclaim for extraordinary performances of diverse classical and contemporary repertoires.

At the RWB, Warburton has successfully led the organization in developing new and existing relationships with presenting partners, rapidly growing the company’s performance opportunities and presence abroad. In 2018, Warburton led the RWB to join the Winnipeg Indigenous Accord as a signatory, a multi-year commitment to reconciliation and a promise to continue working towards bringing our communities closer together. In consultation and collaboration with Indigenous and Metis elders and leaders, the RWB Indigenous Advisory Circle was established in 2019. Warburton is responsible for the RWB’s increased participation within its respective international peer group that has inspired other arts institutions to further help support artists. He is co-chair of the Crisis Management Team which has actively navigated the organization through the public health crisis and pandemic.

Warburton represents the RWB at the International Society for the Performing Arts (ISPA), Association of Performing Arts Presenters (APAP), Manitobans for the Arts, CDA Ballet Companies Council, and Dance/USA. In 2019, he was selected as one of nine emerging leaders for Dance/USA’s Institute for Leadership Training and completed a one-year mentorship with Joffrey Ballet. Warburton serves on the National Council of the Canadian Dance Assembly, a national service organization for artists and dancemakers and he is an organizing member of the Korean Society of Manitoba.

Elected Chairs

Chairs are appointed positions that oversee and contribute to a specific sector. These sectors are identified by the dance sector needs and therefore can fluctuate. These roles are vital in steering CDA towards the areas in need of most support and connection across Canada.



Service and Support Standing Council Chair

Kim-Sanh Châu

Artistic and General Co-Director, Studio 303  |  Montréal, Québec

Kim-Sanh Châu is a Vietnamese-French contemporary dance artist and cultural worker, based in Montreal. Trained in dance at Paris 8 (France) and UQAM (Montréal), she also holds a Master’s degree in finance (ACU/Australia, Aarhus University/Denmark et Harvard University/USA). Her choreographic work has been presented locally at l’Arsenal, Tangente, MAI, Accès Asie and Quartiers Danses festivals; as well as internationally at SIDance-HOTPOT, Sejong Festival (Korea), Europe Meets Asia in Contemporary Dance, Krossing Over Art Festival (Vietnam), Dancebox and RAW Art Space (Malaysia). Châu is also a screendance filmmaker. Her work, mostly collaborative, has been screened in Canada, Colombia, Germany, France, Italy and Vietnam. In 2017, she was awarded Best Direction 2017 by Festival Quartiers Danses for Inner Smoke. Finally, Châu is Artistic and General Co-director at Studio 303 (Montreal).



Research & Writing / Training & Education Standing Council Chair

Michèle Moss

Associate Professor; Dance Division Chair, University of Calgary  |  Calgary, Alberta

Michèle Moss (BEd, MA) is a dancer, choreographer, researcher and community educator. She considers herself a citizen of the world; born in the UK of Jamaican and British parents, raised in Montréal, resident of Calgary since 1978 and frequent flyer in search of the best vantage point from which to consider dance and dancing. Michèle began as a tap-dancing tot in the UK and then had the good fortune to study at NCC in Montreal (Negro Community Centre). She is currently Associate Professor and Chair of the Dance Division in the School of Creative and Performing Arts at the University of Calgary-with pedagogy, global dance practices and jazz dance as her focus. She greatly enjoys her UCalgary teaching, research, and choreographic course assignments as well as local and national commissions, international teaching and the many opportunities to conduct ethnographic research in the field.

As co-founder of concert jazz dance company and community school, Decidedly Jazz Danceworks (DJD) 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. Her choreographic work has been supported by Canada Council for the Arts, Alberta Foundation for the Arts, Heritage Canada as well as numerous UCalgary research grants. Moss was a long-time member of the board of the Society for Canadian Dance Studies and is excited to bring her wealth of knowledge to her position with the Canadian Dance Assembly. She continues to serve on working groups related to equity and diversity in Canada and USA. She is proud of her mentorship and she continues advise many Calgary dance artists and educators formally and informally.



Chairs of Freelancers and Consultants Standing Council

Spirit Synott - (Shared Member at Large position with Rachel da Silveira Gorman)

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 Silveira 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.

Members at Large

Each and every individual on our board plays a key role in advocating for their region, dance style and individual representations. We aim for a broad and intersectional group of individuals.



Collette "Coco" Murray

Artistic Director, Coco Collective  |  Toronto, ON

Collette “Coco” Murray is a dance educator, cultural arts programmer, and dance instructor. Her performance background includes Caribbean Folk, traditional West African, and other diasporic dance styles with many Toronto-based dance companies. She is a dedicated dance artist whose creative work spans 20 years in Ontario in communities. Murray creates culturally responsive art programs and focuses on mentorship of emerging Black dancers and an art educator that partners with organizations. Miss Coco Murray is her mobile, dance education business yet Murray is also Artistic Director of Coco Collective, an intergenerational, multidisciplinary team of artists offering projects connecting participants to the knowledge from African and Caribbean arts. This award-winning artist is recognized as one of 100 Accomplished Black Canadian Women honouree in 2020 and the 2019 recipient of the Toronto Arts Foundation’s Community Arts Award for her significant contribution to working in and for transforming local communities through dance. Murray was the Canadian Dance Assembly’s 2013 recipient of the “I love Community” Dance award in Vancouver, BC. In addition, Murray is a contributing writer published in The Dance Current magazine and Dance Collection Danse. She serves on the Board of Directors for Arts Etobicoke and Dance Umbrella of Ontario (DUO) bringing equity, education, and inclusion lens. Murray is pursuing her Ph.D. in Dance Studies at York University to research on dance education pedagogies and mentorship that supports the Canadian African diasporic dance sector.



Tatum Wildeman

Artistic Director/Choreographer/Dancer – The Saskatchewan Dance Project  |  Saskatoon, SK

Tatum Wildeman is a Saskatchewan based independent contemporary dance artist and artistic director of The Saskatchewan Dance Project. She is dedicated to advancing safe and professional level dance training and performing opportunities for dancers in Saskatchewan. Tatum is committed to safe dance practice and is in the final stage of completing her Safe in Dance certificate through Healthy Dancer Canada. Tatum also dedicates her time to outreach dance-based programs focused on mental wellness for Indigenous youth living on reserve and is currently working with the community of Wollaston Lake to establish and deliver a permanent dance program. Tatum is a practicing Registered Nurse and is currently working towards a masters in nursing at the University of Saskatchewan focusing on the use of dance to improve mental wellness in Indigenous youth living in northern Saskatchewan. Tatum is passionate about the use of dance to improve mental health and advancing safe dance practice for professional independent dance artists.



Harmanie Rose

Associate Artist/Teaching Assistant  |  All Bodies Dance

Harmanie Rose is a disabled dance artist living and working on the unceded territory of the Musqueam, Sḵwx̱wú7mesh, and Tsleil-Waututh Nations. She is curious about the choreographic possibilities of the disabled dancing body. Harmanie co-founded iDance Edmonton in 2009 as a way of creating ongoing learning and performance opportunities in dance for people with and without disabilities. Since 2014, Harmanie has been working as a performer, choreographer, and facilitator for All Bodies Dance Project. She is excited to be co-facilitating Ready Dance Youth Project with Danielle Wensley. She has created four outdoor, site-specific pieces for Vines Art Festival and was a featured performer in world-renowned dance artist Alice Sheppard’s short dance film Inclinations. Harmanie participated in UCLA’s inaugural Dancing Disability Lab, which aims to answer questions around the culture and aesthetics of disabled dance. In May 2020 Harmanie was featured in The Dance Current. Harmanie has recently joined the board of directors of CRIPSiE in Edmonton and the InterdepenDance collective of disabled dance artists in BC. She is excited to be a part of the discussion of decolonizing the idea of what dance is and what it can be.



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.”



Michelle Olson

Artistic Director, Raven Spirit Dance  |  Vancouver, British Colombia

Michelle Olson is a member of the Tr’ondëk Hwëch’in First Nation and the Artistic Director of Raven Spirit Dance. She studied dance and performance at the University of New Mexico, the Aboriginal Arts Program at the Banff Centre and was an Ensemble Member of Full Circle First Nations Performance. Michelle works in areas of dance, theatre and opera as a choreographer, performer and movement coach and her work has been seen on stages across Canada. Selected choreographic credits include Gathering Light (Raven Spirit Dance), Mozart’s Magic Flute (Vancouver Opera), The Ecstasy of Rita Joe (Western Canada Theatre/National Arts Centre), Death of a Chief (Native Earth Performing Arts/National Arts Centre). She was the recipient of the inaugural Vancouver International Dance Festival Choreographic Award. She graduated as a Certified Movement Analyst from Laban/Bartenieff and Somatic Studies Canada and is currently teaching at Langara’s Studio 58.

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