DanceHouse, in partnership with Vancouver Indigenous dance company Dancers of Damelahamid, launches its 2019-2020 season with a performance by Bangarra Dance Theatre.

In Vancouver, as part of its Canadian and U.S. tour, the Australian dance company will present the Canadian premiere of Spirit, a presentation of the company’s best repertoire drawn from its 30-year history. The showcase features Bangarra Dance Theatre’s full ensemble of seventeen dancers.

“Set to a beautiful and haunting score composed by David Page and Steve Francis, Spirit invites audiences to connect with stories and songlines drawn from all over Australia, in a celebration of First Nations Peoples’ unbroken connection to the land.” – Bangarra Dance Theatre.

As with all of its work, at the heart of every Bangarra creation is the company’s relationships with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities, with stories gathered from community elders and created on traditional lands.

“As ambassadors for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander culture, we are committed to deepening international engagement and global understanding of Australia’s First Nations People,” says Bangarra’s executive director Philippe Magid in a company media release.

DanceHouse’s artistic and executive director Jim Smith says Bangarra’s celebration of ceremony and tradition is helping to define identity within modern global culture. Smith goes onto to say that given Canada’s diverse culture and traditions, Spirit will have a particular resonance for local audiences.

Spirit demonstrates the immense power of art to break down geographical barriers, sparking important dialogue on the preservation of the ceremonial rituals and storytelling forged by cultures over millennia,” he says in a media release.

Founded in 1989, Bangarra Dance Theatre is one of Australia’s leading performing arts companies. They are multi-year recipients of Helpmann Awards, Australia’s annual national awards celebrating the best in live entertainment and performing arts.

DanceHouse presents Bangarra Dance Theatre’s Spirit at the Vancouver Playhouse (600 Hamilton St, Vancouver) on October 25 & 26. Visit dancehouse.ca for tickets and information.