BA (University of the Philippines), PhD (University of California Riverside)
Ethnography, cultural heritage, tourism, transnationalism, nationalism, gender studies, reconstruction, Philippine "folk" dance.
Patrick Alcedo was a Rockefeller Humanities Fellow at the Smithsonian Institution and a performer with the internationally touring Filipiniana Dance Group, and received his doctorate in Dance History and Theory from UC Riverside under the auspices of the Asian Cultural Council’s Ford Foundation grant.
Professor Alcedo’s film publications have appeared in The New York Times and are distributed by Alexander Street Press. Gawad Urian (Manila Film Critics Circle) nominated his film, Ati-atihan Lives, for Best Documentary. His research on the folklorization of religion and performance of gender and indigeneity has been published, among others, in the Journal of Southeast Asian Studies (2007) and the anthology Dance Ethnography and Global Perspectives (Palgrave MacMillan, 2014).
Other recent publications include “Emotional and Religious Landscapes: The Making of the Documentary Film A Piece of Paradise” in Theatres of Affect: New Essays on Canadian Theatre (Playwrights Canada Press, 2014) and “States of Presence and Absence: An Introduction to Nanay (Mother): A Testimonial Play” in Once More, With Feeling: Five Affecting Plays (Playwrights Canada Press, 2014).
The Filipino Centre Toronto awarded Dr. Alcedo the Young Professional Award in 12012, and the Governor’s Office of his home province of Aklan, Philippines, honoured him as Most Outstanding Aklanon in recognition of his achievements and community contributions.
With support from Canada’s Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council, Professor Alcedo recently completed a three-year documentary film project, A Piece of Heaven, about the everyday and extraordinary lives of four Filipina caregivers in Toronto. In 2014 he won the Early Researcher Award, given by the Government of Ontario’s Ministry of Research and Innovation, for his body of work in the field of arts and humanities and research on Philippine dance. Also in 2014, the Fulbright Association honoured him with the prestigious Selma Jeanne Cohen Award for the field of Dance and Dance Studies.
Modesto Mawulolo Amegago
Theatre Arts Dipl (University of Ghana), MFA, PhD (Simon Fraser University)
Ethnology, cultural context of African music and dance, cross-cultural aesthetics.
Professor Amegago is a specialist in West African Performance arts with broad interest in the field of cultural studies, interdisciplinary music dance and theatre performance, cross-cultural aesthetics, curriculum development and implementation, arts and education philosophy, West African and African Diaspora ceremonies and festivals. He began performing music and dance and ceremonies at a very early age and led many music and dance groups in communities and institutions of Ghana.
In 1982, in his native Ghana, he founded the Dunenyo cultural group that specialized in the Anlo-Ewe music performance traditions and served as the group’s artistic director, choreographer, master drummer, poet and playwright. He also founded and directed Nutifafa African Music and Dance Ensemble in Vancouver in 1994 and toured extensively with the group throughout USA and Canada. He served as a drummer in Alpha Yaya Diallo and Bafin, a Vancouver based contemporary Guinean band, led by Alpha Yaya Diallo. He had also performed with renowned artists, such as Dido Morris, Albert Saint Albert, Glen Velez, Trichy Sankaran, Sal Ferreras and Themba Tana in Vancouver.
He directed the Anlo-Hogbetsotso festival in the southern Volta Association of Toronto (in 2005 and 2006), and served as a curator of the Performing Diaspora initiated by Prof. Danielle Robinson in collaboration with the Harriet Tubman Institute on Research on Global Migrations of African Peoples at York University (in 2011 and 2012). He is currently serving as artistic director of Nutifafa Afrikan Performance Ensemble and leading the group in performances in the various communities, schools and theatres in Canada and USA.
Dr. Amegago has taught in the School of Performing Arts, University of Ghana, Accra, University of British Columbia, Simon Fraser University, the University of Arizona, Tucson and Arizona State University. He joined the faculty in the Department of Dance at York University in 2004.
Areas of Research and Academic Specialty: Dance Ethnography, West African Performance arts, Dance Writing
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PhD Dance Studies (University of Surrey), MA Dance Ethnology (York University), BA Hons English, History & Anthropology (University of Toronto)
Dr. Bridget Cauthery is a dance and cultural studies scholar focusing on the impact of post/neo-coloniality and the processes of globalization on contemporary and popular dance practices in the Global North. Since 2008 she has been lecturing in the Dance Department at York University and in the Theatre School at Ryerson University and was appointed to York’s Faculty of Graduate Studies in 2014. She became Assistant Professor in Dance at York University in July 2020.
In 2016 Bridget was the recipient of a twelve-month research leave to complete the manuscript for her forthcoming monograph Choreographing the North (McGill-Queens University Press) that examines eleven contemporary dance works from the northern and southern hemispheres that take the North as their source and inspiration. She was one of four keynote speakers for the 2016 Selma Odom Lecture Series celebrating forty years of dance studies at York University. In 2014 Bridget won the inaugural e-learning teaching award in the School of Arts, Media, Performance and Design for her course Dance, Film & Culture. In 2015 Bridget received Academic Innovation funding for a new blended learning course that uses social media to manufacture undergraduate student engagement with critical theory. In 2018 she was awarded the President’s University-Wide Teaching Award for Contract Faculty. She has presented at conferences in Canada, the U.S. and Europe and her research has been published in Ethnologies, Culture & Tradition, Canadian Dance Studies, Performance Research Journal, TOPIA and appears in Fields in Motion: Ethnography in the Worlds of Dance (2011). Chapters on indigenous identities in dance in two anthologies are forthcoming in 2021 – Moving Together: Dance and Pluralism in Canada (Wilfrid Laurier Press) and The Oxford Handbook of Contemporary Ballet (Oxford University Press).
Area of Academic Specialty: Dance Studies, Cultural Studies, Post-colonial theory
BA Hons (UWO), MA (Brock), PhD (University of Edinburgh)
Mary Fogarty is a cultural sociologist interested in performance. Her current projects address the movement practices of everyday life and the labour of entertainers. She has written about the pedestrian aesthetics of Gene Kelly, international breaking competitions and how they are judged, the unlikely resemblances of YouTube music fans, b-boy/b-girl underground video magazines, the history of punk posture, sociological approaches to music and the body, ageing and musical taste in dance scenes, and the historical contributions of Toronto’s hip hop scene.
Fogarty has been an invited keynote speaker at various conferences including Creative Communities at Griffith University in Australia, KISMIF in Portugal, PCAC’s annual conference in Canada and the Schlundt Lecture at the University of Riverside (California, U.S.A.) at the Show&Prove conference.
She is the co-editor of Movies, Moves and Music: The Sonic World of Dance Films as well as the forthcoming Oxford Handbook of Hip Hop Dance Studies (co-edited with Imani Kai Johnson). Her writing can be found in The Oxford Handbook of Punk Rock, Performance Matters, The Routledge Reader on the Sociology of Music, The Journal of Popular Music Education, Continuum: Journal of Media and Cultural Studies, The Oxford Handbook of Dance and the Popular Screen, The Oxford Handbook of Dance and Competition, Ageing and Youth Cultures: Music, Style and Identity, and Neurocase. She wrote “A Manifesto for the Study of Popular Dance” in Conversations Across the Field of Dance Studies in 2011.
Her forthcoming publications include a special issue of Contemporary Music Review on Taylor Swift (co-edited with Gina Arnold), an ethnographic account of personal hip hop archives, a special issue on music and dance, and a few additional collaborations about hip hop culture with well-known practitioners.
Fogarty is the current Editor-in-Chief of IASPM Journal and serves on the Editorial Board of the new journal, Global Hip Hop Studies. She has acted as Chair of PoP Moves Americas (2016-2020) and President of IASPM-Canada (2019-2020). At York University, she was a Graduate Program Director in Dance Studies (2018-2020) and the recipient of an AMPD Teaching Award.
Norma Sue Fisher-Stitt
BA, MFA (York University), EdD (Temple University)
Dance and technology (pedagogical and philosophical issues pertaining to arts education), Canadian dance history, nineteenth and twentieth century ballet technique.
Norma Sue Fisher-Stitt, a graduate of Canada’s National Ballet School, danced with the National Ballet of Canada for four years prior to attending York University. A technique teacher for many years, the subject of her Master’s thesis was “The Cecchetti Method of Classical Ballet: An Investigation into its Evolution”. Other historical research projects have focused on dance in Canada during the early 20th century, including Anna Pavlova’s Toronto performances and entertainment in Dawson City at the turn of the century. She is the author of the book The Ballet Class: A History of Canada’s National Ballet School 1959-2009, released in 2010 in conjunction with the school’s 50th anniversary celebrations.
For her doctoral dissertation at Temple University in Philadelphia, Dr. Fisher-Stitt created and tested a computer tutorial on ballet allegro terminology. Together with her department colleague Professor Mary Jane Warner, she authored and produced the groundbreaking educational CD-ROM Shadow on the Prairie: An Interactive Multimedia Dance History Tutorial. She has presented papers at conferences hosted by the Society of Dance History Scholars, the Canadian Society for Dance Studies, the European Association of Dance Historians, and the Canadian Association for Theatre Research, and she currently sits on the Editorial Board for the Society of Dance History Scholars. Her areas of teaching and research include dance history, the evolution of ballet technique, and dance education/pedagogy.
Dr. Fisher-Stitt has served as Chair of the Department of Dance, director of the MA/PhD Program in Dance, associate dean of the Faculty of Fine Arts, associate dean of the Faculty of Graduate Studies, and associate vice-president of Academic Learning Initiatives at York University.
Areas of Research and Academic Specialty: Dance History, Ballet Technique, Dance Education
Syreeta Hector is a dance artist and educator in Toronto, Ontario. As a highly accomplished performer, Syreeta has worked for internationally recognized companies like Adelheid Dance Projects, Citadel + Compagnie, and Toronto Dance Theatre. She is a proud graduate of The National Ballet School’s Teacher Training Program, The School of Toronto Dance Theatre, and has achieved her Master of Arts in Dance Studies from York University.
Her solo work called “Black Ballerina” gained recognition at the SummerWorks Festival in 2019. Here, the piece won the Stratford Festival Lab Award for Research and Creation. At this time, the solo was also invited to undergo a residency with Workspacebrussels, and the Kaaitheater in Brussels, Belgium. Currently, the development of “Black Ballerina” is being supported through the RBC Creators in Residence Program at Canadian Stage.
Jennifer Jimenez is a community engaged artist with an extensive career as a national and international scenographer for live performance. She holds an MA in Advanced Theatre Practice from the Royal Central School of Speech and Drama, London, UK, a BFA in Theatre Production and Design, and BEd from York University. She has received an OAC Chalmers Award, has been twice nominated for the OAC Pauline McGibbon Award in Design, and is a member of the Associated Designers of Canada (ADC). Her research explores the intersection between participatory and inclusive performance, community development, and interdisciplinary practice. As Co-Founder/Executive Director of ADCID (Aiding Dramatic Change in Development) since 2008, she has worked towards sustainable community development, engaging groups locally and internationally, in participatory arts and dialogue. She is a member of the International Federation of Theatre Research (IFTR) and the Hemispheric Institute’s, Disability and Performance working groups, and the IFTR Scenography working group.
Susan Lee is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Dance at York University whose embodied research focuses on the intersection of identity, place and space in interdisciplinary/intermedial collaborations which are performed on stage, on site and online. A Dora-nominated dancer, Lee’s professional career as a performer, choreographer, and teacher spans thirty years. She has originated roles in almost fifty world premieres by many established Canadian choreographers including Allen Kaeja, Holly Small, Yvonne Ng, Peter Chin and Maxine Heppner, performing across Canada, the US, Mexico, Portugal, Singapore and Indonesia. As a company member of Kaeja d’Dance (1997- 2008) she originated roles in their major works including Abattoir, Asylum of Spoons,Resistance, Courtyard and Buried Monuments. She is also featured in their award-winning dance films, Asylum of Spoons, Witnessed, Resistance, Departure and the Gemini-nominated Old Country, as well as in Aroma, Terrain, and Verge, dance film collaborations with Allen Kaeja and Emmy-nominated videographer Douglas Rosenberg.
Lee’s creative works often combine dance, live music, video and interactive new media. Her most recent work Polarities is a collaboration with media artist Don Sinclair and the York Dance Ensemble, a livestreamed real time performance with affected video green screened onto a variety surfaces including a lit cyclorama and fog. Susan’s choreography has been presented in dance festivals and series in Toronto, Ottawa, Halifax and Peterborough. Her work has been described as “…simple and extraordinary.” (Halifax Chronicle-Herald) and “…a tour de force of magic and mystery” (the Globe and Mail). She has been awarded grants and scholarships to support her creative research and productions.
Susan has taught in a variety of contexts including public schools in Toronto and northern Ontario, York University, professional and community workshops in Canada, Portugal and the US. She teaches contact improvisation, partnering techniques, structures for improvisation, modern dance and release technique. She has been a senior mentor in Maxine Heppner’s Across Ocean’s Choreographic Marathon since 2010.
A past dance community leader, Susan was co-Artistic Director of Series 8:08 from 1993 – 2005, has also served on the boards of several prominent dance organizations, including the Canadian Alliance of Dance Artists and the CanAsian Dance Festival.
Susan holds a BFA (specialized honours in dance) and an MFA in choreography from York University. She has been Artistic Director of the York Dance Ensemble since 2016.
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MFA '10; BFA '03
Sessional Assistant Professor
Tracey Norman is a driving force in her community, spending her time as a choreographer, educator, performer, outside eye, researcher, writer and mother to two young children. Based in Toronto, Tracey’s choreography has been commissioned by numerous organizations including, DanceWorks Mainstage, Dance Ontario’s Creative Partnership Program, Dance Matters, Guelph Dance, Kinetic Studio, and Hart House, performed in numerous festivals including, Nuit Blanche, Montreal Fringe, Toronto Fringe, fFIDA, and Festival de Dance en l’Atlantique, as well as self and co-produced on stages across North America. Her work has been described as “refreshing and original” (The Globe and Mail) and nominated for a Frankie Award for Most Outstanding Choreography (Montreal, 2018). Tracey is a resident artist of the Intergalactic Arts Collective (IGAC), housed at Artscape Youngplace. She has written articles for publications including The Dance Current and Journal of the Motherhood Initiative. Tracey has been on faculty in the Department of Dance at York University for over a decade, following the completion of her MFA in Choreography and Dramaturgy. www.traceynorman.com
Freya Björg Olafson
Freya Björg Olafson is an intermedia artist who works with video, audio, painting and performance. Her praxis engages with identity and the body, as informed by technology and the Internet. Olafson’s work has been presented and exhibited internationally at venues such as the Bauhaus Archiv (Berlin), SECCA - SouthEastern Center for Contemporary Art (North Carolina), Ochoymedio (Quito, Guayaquil and Manta in Ecuador), The National Arts Center / Canada Dance Festival (Ottawa), and Onassis Cultural Center (Athens, Greece).
Her video work has screened in festivals and galleries internationally, and is distributed by Video Pool Media Arts Centre. Olafson has benefitted from residencies, most notably through EMPAC - Experimental Media & Performing Arts Center (New York) and Counterpulse (San Francisco). Acknowledgements include the receipt of the ‘Buddies In Bad Times Vanguard Award’ from SummerWorks, 'Making A Mark Award' Winnipeg Arts Council and her nomination for the Independent Media Arts Alliance’s ‘National Media Arts Prize’.
In 2017 Olafson’s work CPA [Consistent Partial Attention] was selected by an international jury to represent Team Canada in the category of original dance at Les Jeux De La Francophonie in Ivory Coast, Africa. After receiving significant residency support from San Francisco’s CounterPulse and Montreal's Oboro Media Arts Centre, Olafson is continuing to develop a project incorporating virtual reality, slated to premiere in 2019 at PTE - Prairie Theatre Exchange in partnership with WNDX – Festival of Moving Images in Winnipeg.
Upcoming publications include a score/script of her performance work AVATAR as part of Playwrights Canada Press' 2021 anthology on Digital Theatre in Canada.
BS (Vanderbilt University), MA (Northwestern University), PhD (University of California Riverside)
American dance history, social dance reconstruction, dance in the African diaspora, Brazilian dance, cross-cultural research, cultural studies.
Danielle Robinson is a dance scholar who researches the cross-cultural movement of Afro-Diasporic popular dances within the Americas. Her research has been recognized with awards from the Society of Dance History Scholars, the Congress on Research in Dance, and the American Theatre focus group of the Association for Theatre in Higher Education. In addition, during 2011-12, she was a Visiting Fellow at the University of Chichester (UK), sponsored by the Leverhulme Trust.
Dr. Robinson’s book manuscript, Modern Moves: Ragtime Dancing and American Cultures (under contract with Oxford University Press), examines how notions of modernity were embodied in early 20th century social dancing and the nascent dance industry that supported it. Her articles on ragtime, jazz and swing dancing in the United States have been published in Dance Theatre Journal (UK), Dance Research Journal (US), Dance Chronicle (US), Dance Research (UK), Research in Dance Education (UK), and the edited collection I See America Dancing (with Juliet McMains). She has recently presented papers at the Congress on Research in Dance, Society for Ethnomusicology, Society of Dance History Scholars and the Symposium on Popular Dance and Music (now known as PoP Moves).
Professor Robinson is currently leading a collaborative, interdisciplinary research project in Bahia, Brazil with funding from the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada (SSHRC). This project explores samba de roda, a dance and music complex with roots in Afro-Brazilian slave cultures, which was recently recognized by UNESCO as a Masterpiece of Oral and Intangible Heritage. The project will culminate in a co-authored book, Roots Sambas: Collaborations and Conflicts in Dancing, Music and Culture, that explores the potential for decolonizing cross-cultural research. Her first article from this research project appears in Bodies of Sound: Studies Across Popular Music and Dance (Ashgate), co-authored with Jeff Packman.
Dr. Robinson taught at the Federal University of Bahia in Salvador (Brazil), University of California (Riverside), and University of Texas (Austin) before joining the faculty in York University’s Department of Dance in 2005. She is cross-appointed to the Graduate Programs in Theatre Studies and Communication and Culture and is a Fellow of York’s Centre for Research on Latin America and the Caribbean and of Winters College. She received the Faculty of Fine Arts Dean’s Teaching Award for junior faculty in 2009.
Areas of Research and Teaching:
Dance Ethnography, Cultural Studies, Dance History, Critical Race Theory, Social Dance Reconstruction, Multicultural Dance Education, Popular Dance Practices, African Diaspora within the Americas, Latin American Dance Cultures