Scotiabank Dance Centre Taps Into Vancouver’s Talent

Posted by on October 7, 2013 at 2:23 pm.

“The Dance Centre not only assisted in the creation of my artistic form, but also created a platform for which my work was able to be shown and highlighted in the community. I know that without their assistance, the achievements and development of my work would not have the same potential.” Shay Kuebler | Choreographer and Performer

We could not have said it better ourselves. Shay’s words pretty much sum up how we feel about our venue sponsor for Raw Talent 2013. Without the generosity of the Scotiabank Dance Centre, our exhibit would not have a home, our photographers would not have an outlet to showcase their talents, and our audiences would not have the opportunity to engage in what has become a wildly anticipated annual event for the entire city’s creative community. We can’t help but have a soft spot for this organization when its mission is to support local artists like Shay, who go on to create works like this!

Faris Family Studio at The Dance CentreSome may find it unusual for a photography exhibit to be housed in a dance theatre like Scotiabank Dance Centre’s “black box” or Faris Family Studio, pictured to the left with its retractable hydraulic seating. But when you think about it, are dance and photography so dissimilar? Both incredible visual art forms that offer a way of communicating beyond speech, one is never far from the other. Beautiful as they are on their own, they are inspiring when performed in partnership. The much-loved Ballerina Project is a prime example, as are the following captured moments of motion featuring dancers who will be performing in upcoming Dance Centre shows:

Liquid Loft | Photo by Chris Haring

Liquid Loft | Photo by Chris Haring
Running Sushi: October 31 – November 2, 2013 | liquidloft.at

Ziyian Kwan | Photo by Chris Randle

Ziyian Kwan | Photo by Chris Randle
the neck to fall: November 21 & 22, 2013 dumbinstrumentdance.com

Battery Opera | Photo by Yvonne Chew

Battery Opera | Photo by Yvonne Chew
Everything: November 21 & 22, 2013 batteryopera.com

The Dance Centre 2013-2014 Season

The 605 Collective | Photo by David Cooper

The 605 Collective | Photo by David Cooper
Inheritor Album: January 30 – February 1, 2014 | 605collective.com

It never made sense to me that a major city like Vancouver with its many talents should not have a thriving arts and culture scene to rival those of Toronto or New York. What we see instead is the closure of historical institutions like the Playhouse, and the bleeding of local artists to more vibrant locales with greater prospects. It is consequently all the more important to support non-profit organizations like The Dance Centre, which also serves as a registered charity. The architectural beauty that it operates within is a non-subsidized building that must generate enough revenue from studio rentals in order to continue the development of dance in BC.

The Scotiabank Dance Centre Building with Heritage FacadeFactoid: The site at 677 Davie Street once served as the foundation for a bank in the 1920s. The two-story neoclassical composition of granite and brick became the home of The Bank of Nova Scotia and served well as a popular period film set in its final years. When the plot was donated to build The Dance Centre, the challenge fell into the hands of lead architects Arthur Erickson and Noel Best. Recognizing the multi-faceted needs of the numerous groups that would utilize the space, dancers were consulted in every step of the way. Quite literally as well, at the floor design stage, when rigorous testing with pointe shoes, slippers, bare feet, tap, and flamenco shoes commenced. When The Dance Centre opened its doors in 2001, it had been transformed from a 6,000sqft space to a 32,000sqft state-of-the-art facility with specialized floors and custom designs to serve all disciplines. Not one to forget its roots, the history of the site is remembered through the façade of the old heritage building which greets you when you round the corner from Davie to Granville.

The Centre supports dance professionals in a myriad of ways. Member benefits include everything from job search help, to grant writing, to marketing, and even fundraising. It not only presents information sessions, but workshops, networking opportunities that are invaluable for an emerging artist, and also awards to help jump start a dancer’s career. Full Artist and Company members also benefit from substantial discounts and rush rates on studio rentals and even free use of the boardroom for the all too important meetings. Video services and an edit suite are accessible for cutting demos, as well as an extensive library of tapes and DVDs for those seeking further study in their discipline.

You don’t need to be in the arts to know that it can be a very expensive vocation. Programs like The Dance Centre’s Artists-in-Residence, which Shay belongs to as part of The 605 Collective, offer assistance by fully subsidizing studio space so that those in his company can develop new works without the burden of the usual overhead. As a result, they are enabled to create, teach, and most enjoyably, perform.

Dancers in Birmingham Studio

Dancers in The Bruce R Birmingham Studio | Photo by Daniel Collins

The mark of growth can also be found in the ability of an artist to bridge disciplines, something that The Dance Centre doesn’t overlook. An interdisciplinary research program called DanceLab also funds fully subsidized studio space to encourage choreographers and artists from different disciplines to work together in an effort to explore the potential of cross-art form collaboration to innovate new works. Recognizing that the general audience is always the ultimate test of any experiment, the results are then shared with the public at a free studio presentation.

It is this kind of forward-thinking and inclusive approach led by Canada’s flagship dance facility that enables projects like the 12×12 Vancouver Photo Marathon to shine. Thank you, Scotiabank Dance Centre, for inviting our audience to join yours in the collective enjoyment of the arts.

Dance. Photography. Music. Painting. They are all branches from the same tree. All of us that work under the canopy of arts and culture are connected, and should always support one another if we want to grow.

On Saturday October 12, the doors of the Scotiabank Dance Centre will open at 6pm for the whole city to take in a FREE one-of-a-kind photo exhibit of 60 film photographers. It only happens once a year, and it only happens for one night. You will not want to miss Raw Talent 2013: The 12×12 Vancouver Photo Marathon Exhibit.

Raw Talent Photo Boards by John Biehler

Photo by: John Biehler

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