Guelph Contemporary Dance Festival – enthralling, inspiring and educating
If the best community initiatives build rich and broad partnerships then the Guelph Contemporary Dance Festival’s (GCDF) Karen Kaeja Residency project certainly leaps to mind. These dancers and community-builders know how to stretch a grant and do so with creativity and grace!
With a $2,500 grant from The Guelph Community Foundation’s, Musagetes Fund, the GCDF invited Toronto-based dance artist Karen Kaeja to Guelph for a 17-day residency where she worked with the community and local professional dancers from the Fall on Your Feet Collective and the Guelph Youth Dance Company; taught at the dance festival’s March Break Camp and in local public schools; and collaborated with local artists to perform a new work for an International Women’s Day event ‘Women’s Voices’ that benefited Guelph-Wellington Women in Crisis. ‘Women’s Voices’ was an evening of celebration, solidarity, and awareness of women through dance, music, and film.
“The Guelph Contemporary Dance Festival aims to enthrall, inspire, impassion and educate through dance,” said Catrina von Radecki, Co-Artistic Director and General Manager. “This unique and inspiring project energized our artist, our community, has inspired other partnerships and helped to develop our organization and the Canadian dance scene as well.” Guelph has a vibrant arts community that continues to welcome and embrace artists in our midst. For Karen Kaeja, Guelph is now like a second home as she attests in her blog, “There are no two better places to be than in the studio and in Guelph. I am truly in my element here.”