Choreographer Newton Moraes represents Brazil at the Vanguardia Dance Festival

Vanguardia Dance Festival 2016: “A view on Latin America”

By Leila Monteiro Lins

Vanguardia Dance Festival 2016 presents six contemporary artists/companies representing different Latin American countries, living in Canada.

When: November 11 & 12, 2016
Where: Winchester Street Theatre ( 80 Winchester Street – Toronto)
Hour: 7h30 pm

This year Vanguard Festival will present six choreographers:
BRAZIL – Newton Moraes
COLOMBIA – Olga Barrios, John Henry Gerena & Alejandro Ronceria,
MEXICO – Norma Araiza & Lilia Leon




Envisaged by Brazilian-born choreographer Newton Moraes is uniquely collaborative. Within this theatrical laboratory, the dancers move beyond socially expected responses to the pressing issues of sexual politics playfully expressing the myriad kinetic possibilities of hybrid humanity in a post-gender world.

*Newton Moraes Dance Theatre is a company dedicated to the creation, performance and production of contemporary dance. Moraes’ work explores, maintain and develop the links between the arts of Canada and Latin America.


The Echo of a Hair – A Flor de Pelo
With this new work Olga commemorates her 20 years of artistic career. This piece was presented as a work-in-progress in Bogotá (Colombia) and Toronto during the summer 2016, as part of Olga´s 20 years of retrospective. A choreographic piece inspired on aspects referring to myths of hair. This solo work shows confrontation of simultaneous realities and experimentation of materials. The important element in this work is the contrast in movement, music and theatrical play.


Black Tears – Lágrimas Negras
This is a contemporary dance piece that summarizes the idiosyncrasy of the Latin American people about love, passion and couple relationships, integrating different Latin American rhythms like salsa, tango and bolero with the dramaturgy and aesthetics of contemporary dance. Directed and performed by John Henry Gerena, featuring Isabel Estrada, Falciony Patiño, Josh Taylor, and musician Edgardo Moreno.


Amalgama- a new duo excerpt
Amalgama fuses drum culture and contemporary dance and brings together original compositions based on the percussive beats of the Caribbean and Central and South America. For many of these nations, drumming is the heartbeat of their culture and a testament of survival. It is the celebration of the human spirit. Amalgama further explores the relationship between traditional music, urban ritual and contemporary dance.
Amalgama interacts with the audience and celebrates the drumming rhythms of the Americas as the vital blood line that connects us all across the continent.


Nawa (work in progress) This is the first draft of a longer dance theatre piece that deals with expressing a personal journey looking for ways of decolonizing oneself. The artist asks herself questions such as what do I get rid of that no longer serves me? What do I do to get closer to my roots and ancestral teachings? What internal voices do I follow?


Which means lost woman in Spanish, unveils the journey of a Mestizo woman who must excavate herself in order to find her path. Through the amalgamation of dance, theatre and live music, this work explores the feeling of being lost between cultures and yearning for guidance. This woman carries both the burden and protection of her ancestral memory: the history of her Indigenous ancestors, the complexities of a colonized civilization, and the resilience of her people. In her journey, the lost woman connects to her ancestral memory by imagining, listening and ultimately embodying her female ancestors.

Tickets at the door $20, students seniors and CADA members $15.
Reservations at
Contact: Norma Araiza, Olga Barrios 416-516 5586

On the web:

VANGUARDIA DANCE PROJECTS is a Canadian – Latin American collective founded in 2010 with the purpose of promoting contemporary dance works. As a collective, we are committed in supporting contemporary dance artists’ professional development through different events such as a dance series, producing artists work, workshops and touring. We intend to promote an ongoing exchange and collaboration with international dance organizations and artists. We are interested in the dissemination of contemporary artistic practices of dance artists with Latin American background in Canada, maintaining conversation with the rest of the country and the world.

VANGUARDIA DANCE PROJECTS supports innovative artists that include other art disciplines pushing the boundaries of what is called “contemporary” as well as works that having dance as the core, reflect a permanent search of expression through different languages.

Leila Monteiro Lins

Leila Monteiro Lins has more than 30 years of experience in journalism and marketing, including media relations, event planning and the development of communication strategies. In April 2010, LML launched Discover Brazil magazine ( in Canada with the goal of making Brazil better known in North America.

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