DanceWorks, Toronto’s longest running contemporary dance series, proudly presents Sporting Life, newly re-imagined by acclaimed choreographer Julia Sasso of Julia Sasso dances, 20 years after she first premiered this striking work at Ottawa’s prestigious Canada Dance Festival in 1996. DanceWorks then presented it in 1997, earning multiple Dora Award nominations, including Outstanding Choreography. Rigorously physical, technically and emotionally challenging, Sporting Life runs Thursday March 3 to Saturday March 5 nightly at Harbourfront Centre Theatre as part of Next Steps.
Along with a new generation of extraordinary interpreters, Sasso re-envisions her seminal creation that timelessly mirrors our fragilities and perverse lust for violence. Sporting Life reveals the vulnerability, pain and deliriously nonsensical contradictions inherent in a society steeped in violence – condoned and otherwise.
In a series of deliciously absurd vignettes linked together in theme, movement style and content, Sporting Life places five characters (one female and four male dancers) in conflict, revealing the futility of aggression as well as our potential for redemption.
Potent and poignant, this often darkly humorous work is performed by a talented ensemble of Irvin Chow, Matthew Cuff, Jesse Dell, Daniel McArthur and Mateo Galindo Torres. The original sound score is by Sasso and Eric Cadesky; and the rehearsal assistant is original cast member Julia Aplin.
Of the original Sporting Life and its subsequent Toronto incarnation, critics noted:
“Who could forget the impact of Sporting Life… deceptively understated… alive with aggressive energy… yet imbued with a humanistic concern?” – William Littler, Toronto Star
“Sasso’s unique spin on male violence and aggression… one can understand why the piece made such a splash (at the 1996 Canada Dance Festival). In shifting encounters of physical ferocity, they repeatedly hurtle themselves through space like canon balls… Sasso has absorbed well the lessons learned from the films of Martin Scorsese, Sam Peckinpah and Quentin Tarantino – that depicting brutality can become an art form in itself.” – Paula Citron, The Globe and Mail
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Time: 8:00 PM - 9:30 PM
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Harbourfront Centre Theatre (formerly Enwave Theatre)
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