Serge Bennathan is the recipient of the 2017 Isadora Award for Excellence in Dance
Serge Bennathan is the recipient of the 2017 Isadora Award for Excellence in Dance

Vancouver choreographer Serge Bennathan was announced as the recipient of the 2017 Isadora Award for Excellence in Dance in recognition of his contribution to BC’s dance scene through a career spanning over 25 years.

In addition, Julianne Chapple will receive the biennial Iris Garland Emerging Choreographer Award, supporting the work of emerging artists.

“We are very pleased to have the opportunity both to support the work of younger artists whose careers are just starting to take flight, and to acknowledge the achievements of more established artists,” says Mirna Zagar, executive director of The Dance Centre. “These awards illustrate the depth of artistry in British Columbia’s dance community.”

The award-winning Bennathan began his career in dance with Toronto’s Dancemakers in 1990. He is also known for his extensive work with opera companies, directing his first mainstage opera, Rossini’s Tancredi, in 2005.

Founding Vancouver’s Les Productions Figlio in 2006, his company has gone on to produce seven full-length works, and he continues to be active in other opera, dance, and theatre endeavours across Canada and internationally. He is currently creating a new piece, Cruel Tales, set to premiere in May 2018 at Vancouver’s Firehall Arts Centre.

The annual Isadora Award, named after dance pioneer Isadora Duncan, was established by The Dance Centre in 1999 to recognize and celebrate the achievements of the dance profession in British Columbia. Members of the dance community nominate artists for the award, and an independent jury of professionals makes the selection.  Recipients receive a sculpture by glass artist Mary Filer, fully subsidized rehearsal space at Scotiabank Dance Centre and a monetary award.

Emerging choreographer Julianne Chapple receives the biennial Iris Garland Emerging Choreographer Award
Emerging choreographer Julianne Chapple receives the biennial Iris Garland Emerging Choreographer Award

Emerging choreographer Julianne Chapple has seen her choreography presented in both Canada and in Europe. Most recently, she created a new work in residence at Vancouver’s EDAM (Experimental Dance and Music), and was artist-in-residence at The Dance Centre for the 2015/2016 season. Julianne is also co-producer and sometimes curator of a small experimental performance series titled Shooting Gallery Performance, and sits on the board of directors for the western chapter of the Canadian Alliance of Dance Artists (CADA/West).

The biennial Iris Garland Emerging Choreographer Award was established in memory of the pioneering educator who developed Simon Fraser University’s dance program. The cash award provides assistance to an emerging artist between 19 and 35 years of age who demonstrates exceptional choreographic potential, to produce their work at Scotiabank Dance Centre in Vancouver. Through this award, Chapple will premiere Suf(fix), her first full-length work, in 2018.

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