Founded in 1982 by dancer Daniel Soulières, Danse-Cité is a Montreal-based research, creation, production and distribution company dedicated to the advancement of contemporary dance. At the forefront of Montreal's cutting-edge dance scene, Danse-Cité has earned a richly deserved reputation for integrity by presenting unique works and supporting shows that take risks, and by placing the artist front and centre. Every year, the company produces four works and presents an average of 32 shows involving some 50 artists.
Danse-Cité has a unique structure in that it does not deal with a resident choreographer or team of dancers. This unique mode of operation enables the company to present seasonal programs featuring groundbreaking works by innovative new artists. Every year, various artists - choreographers and performers alike - are given the freedom to create projects for Danse-Cité's annual program based on their unique signature and aesthetic. The company supports these artists throughout the creative process - from the germination of an idea to the presentation of the show. In its capacity as an innovator and collaborator, Danse-Cité's role, therefore, is to offer Montreal-based contemporary dance artists a valuable development, production and distribution tool.
From one year and from one generation of artists to the next, Danse-Cité's unique mission finds expression in taking artistic risks - often the most rewarding and productive path. That's why support for emerging artists is central to the company's work. In this highly charged creative context where the emphasis is squarely on exploration and innovation, Danse-Cité plays a vital role in the development and growth of this wide-open and ever-changing discipline.
This series gives emerging choreographers a chance to occupy a full-length program by presenting an original work. In this way, Danse-Cité since its creation has encouraged the emergence of new choreographic signatures but also supports mature artists in the development of their artistic approaches.
Unique and without precedent, this series reverses established conventions by conferring the responsibility of an artistic project upon one or several dancers, rather than on a choreographer. Interpreters thus have the opportunity to challenge themselves in new ways by taking on a creation process whose parameters are defined by their own needs. Danse-Cité gives the performer all of the latitude to exercise his or her craft, from the genesis of a work to its transmission.
Traces-Hors-Sentiers gives carte blanche to artists working in complimentary artistic disciplines. Rather than ask these artists to collaborate with a choreographer, however, Danse-Cité gives them full responsibility for designing and directing their own choreographic work. Literally meaning « off the beaten track », the Traces-Hors-Sentiers formula offers an arena for exploring propositions that turn dance on its head by approaching it from a different perspective, for example through video, music, theatre or poetry.
Danse-Cité's mission is to serve as a catalyst for creation, supporting artists in their research process and enabling them to surpass themselves, while offering audiences an authentic and high quality artistic adventure.