Celebrating Canada’s 150th through dance

Here's a look at the official announcement with Julie Dabrusin, Member of Parliament (Toronto-Danforth), on behalf of the Honourable Mélanie Joly, Minister of Canadian Heritage.

TORONTO, ON (September 19, 2016) – Julie Dabrusin, Member of Parliament (Toronto-Danforth), on behalf of the Honourable Mélanie Joly, Minister of Canadian Heritage, yesterday in Toronto announced $499,144 in funding for Canada’s National Ballet School’s (NBS) Canada 150 Signature Project, Sharing Dance Canada 2017. 

“Next year, as part of the 150th anniversary of Confederation, the Sharing Dance Canada 2017 project will get the country moving by mobilizing and bringing together hundreds of communities to celebrate the strength of Canadian diversity. There will be memorable activities that are accessible to everyone. Thanks to dance, citizens will show the whole world our national pride and everything it means to be Canadian!” —Julie Dabrusin, Member of Parliament (Toronto Danforth)

Thanks to this support from the Government of Canada, through the Canada 150 Fund, NBS will share and showcase Canada’s history, cultural richness and diversity through dance, while also bringing together and empowering communities across the country to share their stories of what it means to be Canadian. Choreographers from culturally diverse backgrounds will work with a range of community groups to give voice – and movement – to a richly expressive and unique dance routine, representing Canada’s artistic identity. The Sharing Dance Canada 2017 routine will be taught in schools and community centres. Free online rehearsals will also be made available on the Sharing Dance website (www.sharingdance.ca) beginning January 2017, so that anyone and everyone across the country can dance Canada into its next 150 years. 

“The 150th anniversary of Confederation will highlight the importance of an inclusive Canadian identity and the rich and unique contributions of our diverse population. It will generate a strong sense of pride and optimism. I invite Canadians across the country to take part in the Sharing Dance Canada 2017 project from Canada’s National Ballet School in their community.” —The Honourable Mélanie Joly, Minister of Canadian Heritage

The celebration of Sharing Dance Day on June 2nd will see communities across Canada come together to perform the 2017 routine, showcasing their local spin and individuality. Official Sharing Dance Day events will take place in Toronto, Montreal, Halifax, Winnipeg, Calgary and Ottawa, as well as in many other cities, big and small.

“Canada’s National Ballet School is thrilled that Sharing Dance Canada 2017 has been selected as A Canada 150 Signature Project and is grateful to the Government of Canada for the funding provided through Canada 150. NBS looks forward to celebrating the strength of Canada’s diversity and cultural richness through dance and the significant role dance plays in Canada’s history. Dance enhances life and promotes better health for people of all ages and abilities. By participating in community Sharing Dance Day events across the country, Canadians will join together to dance Canada into its next 150 years, inspiring others to experience the power of dance.” —Mavis Staines, C.M., DHumL. Artistic Director & CEO, Canada’s National Ballet School 

NBS launched Sharing Dance in 2010 as a community engagement and educational platform connecting the broader community, making dance more accessible, and promoting the physical, mental and emotional benefits of dance. Since its launch, the program has continued to grow and now, thanks to a myriad of national partners and supporters, is bringing dance to Canadians of all ages and skill levels. NBS’ goal is to have Canadians from coast to coast to coast dancing in 2017, for Canada’s 150th, while also increasing awareness around dance and the role it can play in improving quality of life for all.

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