Image of Alida Kendell and Allison Kause
Image of Diego Ramalho
Image of Allara Gooliaff
The Running Thunder Dancers
The motto for the Running Thunder Dancers is: To dance is to give, to give is to love. To love is to Dance.
The Running Thunder Dancers was created in 2010 by founder Adrian LaChance. LaChance has participated in many local and international events. LaChance the Cultural Day Coordinator at the 2017 National Elders Gathering in Edmonton. He’s appeared at the Beijing China & Mongolia Red Sky Performance (2014), Taiwan Ghost Festival (2010, Italy Spirit of the Planet festival (2006), New Zealand WIPCE Conference (2005) and more. LaChance also works with many First Nations running a Life Skills Program.
Marynia Fekecz-Mangan is a Polish dancer/performer/choreographer/teacher/producer based in Edmonton. She was part of a residency program and Creative Incubator at Good Women Dance Company (2018 and 2022). She collaborated with W&M Physical Theatre dance company as part of a residency program and danced in the WM2 project “RICING”. During this residency she created “Still a number”, a duet with Nicole Charlton Goodbrand. Marynia has presented her work at Expense, part of the Chinook Series Festival supported by Good Women Dance Collective. She premiered her solo work “Marynia’s house of awkward pleasure”. This work was also shown at the Quick + Dirty Festival (2020). Marynia joined the Artist in Residency at Mile Zero Dance in September 2021 with her new project “Face-to-Face”.
Usha Gupta Dance Entourage
Usha Gupta started learning dance and music from the age of four while growing up in her native homeland of Jalandhar, India. Today, she’s highly regarded as an ambassador of cultural diversity in Edmonton and across Canada, known for her exceptional body of work in traditional and contemporary Indian classical dance.
Usha continues to learn, teach, and present both dance and music, as a highly prolific Canadian and Indian dance artist, choreographer and teacher. Her incredible commitment to the growth of the arts and culture community has further supported and advocated for South Asian arts to find an important place in Canada.
Originally from Mococa/SP, Brazil, Diego Ramalho's beginnings in dance started with breakdance and Brazilian capoeira. In his teens, he was persuaded to enroll in formal ballet training at Kleine Szene Studio de Dança in Santo André SP, Brazil. In 2013, Diego was invited to be a member of Coastal City Ballet Company in Vancouver, where he performed leading roles in full-length ballets such as Swan Lake, Giselle, Cinderella, A Midsummer Night’s Dream. He’s also worked with contemporary choreographers such as Wen Wei Wang, Joshua Beamish and Erica Trivet. Diego’s been leading stages in productions across Canada, USA and Brazil. He joined Ballet Edmonton in 2018 and is exploring his choreographic voice under the mentorship of Wen Wei Wang.
Hung Mon Athletic Club
Edmonton’s Hung Mon Athletic Club are passionate about bringing the art of traditional Chinese lion dance to western Canada with unsurpassed quality and technique. Rooted in the strength of the Canadian Chinese community, Hung Mon Lion Dancers bring only their best work through the culmination of passion, camaraderie, and dedicated training.Fitness, friendship, and fun are their top values, and this is exemplified in their school and performances. Edmonton’s Hung Mon Athletic Club is supported by the global Chinese Freemasons, a society that fought for justice, peace, and prosperity, dating back to the Qing dynasty. This spirit transcends to how they perform the lion dance. This is what sets them apart from everyone else.
Alida Kendell/Alison Kause
Alida Kendell is a dance artist, teacher and choreographer in Amiskwacîwâskahikan. She has been a collective artist with GWDC since 2009 and during this time has been shaped, challenged and encouraged by its programming, its artists and the communities GWDC engages with. She has been most influenced by dancing in the creative processes of Melenie Demers, Peggy Baker and Sasha Klienplatz. She is in love with the process of enabling physical change through introspection and play, and currently practices durational improvisations that take her further away and closer to herself.
Alison Kause is a founding member of the Good Women Dance Collective and a teacher in Dance Education with Edmonton Public Schools. She is a graduate of the Grant MacEwan Dance Program and the School of Contemporary Dance at SFU, as well as the Education program at the University of Alberta. She has trained and performed across Canada and been inspired by work with local and international colleagues. Alison is inspired by the challenge of finding an intersection between being an artist, mother and teacher - these roles constantly demand attention, inform one another and provide diverse perspectives.
Cuban Movement Studio
The Cuban Movements Dance Academy was established in Edmonton in 2013 by Director Leo Gonzalez, a Professional Dancer and Choreographer from Havana, Cuba. Cuban Movements is committed to offering professional-level instruction in a warm, fun and welcoming environment for dancers of all levels and ages. The team of instructors work alongside students so they can achieve their potential as dancers through technique, expression and musicality.
The dance academy is dedicated to preserving, promoting and bringing awareness about the richness of Cuban arts and culture, particularly in regards to their African roots.
KO Dance Projects
Kathleen Ochoa (KO) is from amiskwacîwâskahikan/ Edmonton, where she works as an independent movement artist, and as director for the KO Dance Project. KO Dance Project is a dance collective developing new research combining embodiment and perception studies, ecology with Qi Gong training and experimental visual art performance. KO’s work includes full-length concert pieces, movement theatre installations, performance art installations, festival production, open studio labs, and guerilla art pop ups.
Kristine Nutting is a community development and arts education specialist. She holds an MFA in creative practices from Plymouth University. She works as a group facilitator, community animator, teacher and creative project manager. Kristine has won several awards for her teaching work at the University of Alberta as well as in rural Alberta . In her previous work as an artist Kristine has toured large scale theatre shows using non-conventional spaces across Canada. Her past devising creative works explore storytelling as a vehicle to analyze culture, class and the aesthetic form of artistic practice.
Janita Frantsi/Jen Dunford/Kathleen Hughes
Kindling is a collective comprised of Jen Dunford, Janita Frantsi, and Kathleen Hughes, all independent contemporary dance artists based in Amiskwacîwâskahikan/Edmonton. The objective of their coalescence is to celebrate the manifestation of unity as they re-examine what it means to perform in the post-pandemic era.
Jen Dunford comes from a lineage of environmental stewards and believes that art plays a key role in decolonization; by sharing perspectives that live in her body she aspires to shape our culture for the better. Inspired by her graduate degree, Janita Frantsi is interested in questioning some of the common perceptions of dance, desiring to find dance, movement, and artistry in different bodies and spaces, specifically in nature. Kathleen Hughes’ Graham-based background and folkloric dance upbringing has always had a sense of matriarchal and earthly traditions which she inherently continues to carry and share with others.
Pritesh Mehta is dancer, performer, choreographer, film maker and instructor from Patan, Gujarat, India. Mehta is currently based in Toronto. He graduated from a diploma in dance foundation program at The Terence Lewis Professional Training Institute with the full scholarship. At the institute he got to learn Contemporary, Ballet, Jazz, Yoga and Flying Low. He also studied dance at the Centennial College dance performance program where he was awarded with The Deans Award. Mehta is a founder of the Dance Factor studio in India where he contributed as a director, teacher, and choreographer. During his time in India, he performed with the Terence Lewis Contemporary Dance Company. Pritesh is currently training at The School of Toronto Dance Theatre and likes to blend his Indian dance and street style background to his contemporary dance. Pritesh is very grateful to be able to spread the love of dance.