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  • 14 Mar 2023 10:30 AM | Valerie Calam (Administrator)

    Dear Dance Community Members,

    As you may be aware, there are budget cuts planned for the Ontario Arts Council (up to 15% of total budget; down to 55 million), to be announced before the end of March 2023.

    We hope that you will join us in requesting that the province sustain the 2022 level of investment to the Ontario Arts Council at $65M in the 2023 provincial budget. You can do this by taking the following actions:

    1. Sign Jill Andrew's Petition

    Jill Andrew is the member of provincial Parliament (MPP) of Toronto-St. Paul's and is petitioning for the Legislative Assembly of Ontario to sustain the Ontario Arts Council budget of $65M in the 2023 provincial budget. Please take a moment to read, sign, and share with your network.

    Read, Sign, and Share the Petition

    2. Write Your Member of provincial Parliament (MPP)

    The Ontario budget will be announced on March 23, and we hope that you will take some time to write a letter and/or connect with your MPP prior to this time to express the importance of sustaining the OAC budget of $65M in the 2023 provincial budget.

    Imagine Canada has a toolkit that you can use HERE.

    If you need to find your MPP and/or their contact information, you can do so by clicking HERE.

    We have written a letter to Minister Bethlanfalvy that you can read HERE.

    Please remember, this is not the first time that the provincial government has targeted the Ontario Arts Council. In the 2018/2019 fiscal year, base funding to the OAC was cut by $5M, with an additional $2.25M cut from the Indigenous Culture Fund. At this time, the budget allocated to the OAC was $69.9M. You can read about it HERE.

    When reflecting on the past four years, it certainly is troubling to think that the OAC is facing yet another cut. To be in a position of trying to hold onto a sustained budget of $65M after facing a huge loss in 2018/2019, and then witnessing the dance industry go through some of the most challenging times it has faced just one year later.

    Today, we are barely a year into the reopening of Ontario, and nine months from the official launch of the resilience fund from the Canadian Dance Assembly. It doesn't make sense, to expect this industry to recovery in these conditions, especially if these prospective cuts go forward. Regardless of how resilient artists seem to be, the current climate requires a resilience building organization like the OAC maintain their ability to operate at full capacity to help the dance sector with their continued recovery.

    Please join us in this push. We need each and every one of you now more than ever. Stand with us and advocate for your need, and your right, to a more sensitive leadership that recognizes and acknowledges the value of dance work, of people who lead creative lives, and the gift of joy, healing and vitality that dance gives to every human being on this earth.

    Yours Sincerely,

    The Team at Canadian Alliance of Dance Artists - East Chapter

  • 01 Sep 2016 8:50 AM | Valerie Calam (Administrator)

    We're 30 years old! That's right, since 1986, CADA-ON has been supporting and empowering independent dancers in self-representation. #KnowYourWorth. DYK that in 1986, CADA-ON was responsible for defining the term, "Professional Dance Artist"? 

    To celebrate, we're sharing our Birthday Party with the TUDS Festival Pre-Party and throwing a Soirée of All-Styles Exchanges (we mean real all styles: Flamenco, Tap, Contemporary, Urban, Kathak, etc, etc). 2 DJs, live music and Improv/Freestyle Exchanges for/by/with Pro dancers of All BACKGROUNDS, and GENERATIONS. 

    To attend and participate, RSVP your spot now and visit: http://tuds.gadfly.ca/saifer86-soiree-allstyles/


    Our Confirmed Improv Exchangers are:

    Caroline Lady C Fraser 

    Marie-Josée Chartier

    Bo Lam 

    Nigel Edwards

    Bboy Nathan Zen 

    Jasmyn Fyffe

    Nova Bhattacharya

    Andrew Pyro Chung

    Andrew Prashad

    Vincent Lee

    Kaylan Shearer 

    Mairead Filgate 

    Catalina Fellay-Dunbar

    Amanda Acorn

    We've got the amazing percussion of Sahab (Habibi Drums) joining us for our jam sessions. Check him out here

    We're proud to present Allegra Charleston as our Master of Ceremonies for the evening! If you saw her at Dusk Dances in Withrow Park this summer, you know you're in for a real treat! 

    We're giving out Prizes! That's right, dancers and audiences will have their chance to win one of these awesome prizes: 

     TOP PRIZE: The Underground Dance Centre, dance class pack value of $150 

     BARREWORKS, fitness class pack, value of $100

    Free workshop in the 2016-17 season at the Toronto Dance Community Love- In, value of $75

     Subscription to The Dance Current, value of $48

    Thank you to our Prize Sponsors!


  • 20 Jun 2016 3:17 PM | Valerie Calam (Administrator)

    We're proud of this dancer who was able to use the Professional Standards for Dance to advocate for a higher wage at Toronto's Much Music Video Awards. Thank you for leading a positive change in our local dance industry. 


    For more information about Interpose, see this article by The Dance Current, or visit their Facebook Page

  • 21 Apr 2016 5:34 PM | Valerie Calam (Administrator)

    *This post was written by Danielle Baskerville, one of CADA-ON's current board members. Danielle just finished a project where she played a duo role as both dancer and producer in Jackie Burroughs is Dead & what are you going to do about it? 

    See how one of CADA-ON's Professional Discounts at H20 Float Spa came in handy... 

    Photo of Robert Kinsbury, Danielle Baskerville and Luke Garwood by Jeremy Mimnagh

    I have been doing some very difficult research for you, dear reader, you CADA-ON member or soon-to-be-er. I am reporting back. And the news is good. Very good. In case you haven’t realized it, there are remarkable perks in belonging to this exceptional organization that go beyond the Training Subsidy Program, the Professional Standards for Dance, and overall support CADA-ON provides us as dance artists. These perks extend to the unique businesses that are supporting CADA-ON through our Professional Discounts, and the experiences they are offering.

    I recently took a visit to H2O FLOAT SPA, a spa on the Danforth that offers all CADA-ON members a discount. A float at H2O is 60 minutes spent floating in water that has more than 1000 lbs of mineral-rich Epsom Salt (magnesium sulfate). You can float in a covered pod (like a very large eggshell) or in an Open Concept float room, which is a private room with very large open bathtub.  You can be in complete darkness and silence, or choose soft lighting and sounds of your choice. And you just….float. I recently did three floats as a way of reporting back to you how I experienced it as a dancer.

    I choose complete darkness and silence in an Open Concept float room. The physical experience is one of weightlessness. Weightlessness of an almost unimaginable sort unless you are one of those lucky enough to have the kind of night dreams that take you to visceral, altered states. Or maybe you have floated in the Dead Sea, Lake Assal in Djibouti or, er, less likely, Don Juan Pond in the McMurdo Dry Valleys of the Antarctica, the saltiest body of water in the world. Allowing the muscles of the neck to completely give way to the water was the biggest challenge for me, but 60 minutes is enough time for your entire body to surrender.

    The feeling of weightlessness is quickly accompanied by a sense of expansion. Muscles used to sustaining verticality let go, and joints expand with an almost audible sigh of relief. I felt my own watery, salty insides as almost inseparable from the water I was floating in, and my own outline became deliciously blurry. After the second and third float, this expansive quality in the joints stayed with me, and I was able to imagine, for a while, that I hadn’t done a good decade of knee work in Graham class way back when…

    The mental experience was meditative. Whether you are someone who meditates or not, floating is a way in that leaves you with little choice but to let go. At the time of my floats, I was both producing and dancing in an hour-long trio that was premiering in a week, called Jackie Burroughs is Dead & what are you going to do about it? I had a lot on my mind, and a lot going on in my body. The first 15-20 minutes of floating was a very busy time inside of me ~ negotiating a flood of thoughts and a body that was slowly transforming and melting into a kind of aquatic creature. I felt undeniably calmer, more focused and relaxed after each float. They were cumulative in effect for me, perhaps because I was able to let go of my racing thoughts more quickly each time my float began.

    It’s luxurious. It’s beneficial. It will leave you feeling calm, expansive and very soft and silky. And I happen to know you deserve it because I know how hard you work. Treat yourself, or get someone to treat you. Because, did I mention? We get a discount….

  • 10 Mar 2016 1:54 PM | Valerie Calam (Administrator)

    Grants for Dance: a look inside the public funding system

    A workshop presented by the Toronto Arts Council and CADA-ON

    Monday, March 21, 2016

    5:00-7:00PM at the Dancer Transition Resource Centre (#500-250 The Esplanade, Toronto ON)

    Ever wondered how you can get public funding for your dance project? Looking to learn more about how public funding reaches the hands of local artists?

    On March 21 at 5pm, join us for a FREE session with Timea Wharton-Suri of the Toronto Arts Council to learn about how public money is distributed to dancers.  A few questions that will be covered in the workshop are:

    -where do grants come from?

    -how are grants allocated at the City and arts council levels?

    -what is the adjudication system, how does it work, and why? 

    Snacks and coffee provided!

    Please register for the workshop in advance, by emailing ­­­­­office@cada-on.ca.

    This workshop is brought to you by the Toronto Arts Council and the Canadian Alliance of Dance Artists, Ontario Chapter. Thank you to the Dancer Transition Resource Centre. 

  • 31 Oct 2015 1:09 PM | Valerie Calam (Administrator)

    CADA-ON is proud to partner with the #TUDS6 festival this year. For the past three weeks, battlers have been practicing for the Skills & Soul competition, (a staple and highlight of the TUDS Festival) in the gorgeous rehearsal spaces of the National Ballet School. Did you know that as a member, these rehearsal spaces are available to dancers for FREE? More info here


    On November 8th, CADA-ON has collaborated with TUDS to sponsor the Hip Hop Workshop Audition with Mark Samuels and Kojo 'Tuch' Mayne. Which means, that if you're a member, you can take this class for FREE! Dancers of all backgrounds welcome. Login to your CADA-ON online account (look under 'forms') for the promo code that gets you 100% off. Registration for the workshop here


    A reminder that Battles DO count towards the Training Subsidy Program. This means that as a member, you can get 60% of your entry fee back, through the TSP program. Thinking about entering? Dancers from all backgrounds welcome.  Read about the Battle here. 


    There are also a ton of other great events, and a pretty sweet line-up of Urban Dance Artists at this year's TUDS Festival. Clear your schedules - Nov 4 to 8 has exciting debates, workshops, events and performances that you won't want to miss. 

    *CADA-ON Members also get 15% off the Mainstage Performances on Nov 5 & 6. Login to your CADA-ON online account (look under 'forms') for the promo code. 

    Many thanks to the Gadfly Team - Ofilio and Apolonia - for making this historic collaboration happen. 

  • 22 Oct 2015 7:24 PM | Valerie Calam (Administrator)

    ATTENTION ALL MEMBERS! You're invited to our Annual General Meeting, held on November 14, 2015 at the Dance Umbrella of Ontario. #therewillbesnacks #andcoffeetoo 

    Email us to let us know you're coming. Bring a friend! Members and non-members welcome. 

  • 30 May 2015 3:02 PM | Valerie Calam (Administrator)
    Dear CADA-ON Members and Supporters, 

    The Canada Council for the Arts recently identified 190 dance forms that are being practiced in the country through their 'Yes I Dance' survey. CADA-ON recognizes this, and we are in the process of conducting research to create an updated version of the Professional Standards for Dance document. Specifically, we are aiming to make the document more inclusive by developing standards for professional dance forms that are currently under represented in our membership. 

    In 2013, with support from the Ontario Arts Council, CADA-ON embarked on a series of community consultations with African diaspora and urban/street dance artists and administrators, to better understand how CADA-ON could serve the specific needs to these communities. We would like to continue this process now by conducting a survey, as well as engaging focus groups from the dance community from an even wider span of dance practices. 

    By joining this research process, you can: 
    • Help us understand the needs of your dance form and the ways in which it is practiced 
    • Ensure that your specific community is represented both by the Professional Standards for Dance document and by the other support services that CADA-ON can offer 
    • Make connections and initiate important discussions about the scope of professional dance practice in Ontario 
    No matter what dance form or dance work you practice, your input will be of great value to us. 

    The survey is available now online HERE.

    Focus Groups
    DatesJune 20, 1:30pm and June 23, 7:00pm, 2015 (choose one date to attend)
    Location: Dance Umbrella of Ontario/CADA-ON Offices. 476 Parliament Street, 2nd Floor, Toronto
    The meetings will be confidential and conducted in a safe, professional environment, moderated by Michael Caldwell (Secretary of the Board) and Larissa Taurins-Crawford (Research Assistant). Light refreshments will be served

    If you would like to participate in a focus group or would like more information, please contact Larissa at programs@cada-on.ca

    We look forward to hearing from you, 

    Your CADA-ON Board of Directors: 

    Brodie Stevenson, Michael Caldwell, Andrea Roberts, Amanda Acorn, Danielle Baskerville, Chrystine Chambers, Catalina Fellay-Dunbar, Mairéad Filgate, Slade Lander, Samantha Mehra, and Ofilio Portillo

  • 18 Mar 2015 7:40 AM | Valerie Calam (Administrator)

    This week, we'd like to highlight Section 14 of the PSD, Discrimination and Personal Harassment. With the Ontario government's recent #WhoWillYouHelp advertising blitz to curb sexual assault (viewed over 7 million times on YouTube) and this week's New York Times article on sexual harassment in the performing arts industry, we'd like to remind members to be aware of personal and sexual harassment in the workplace -- for both yourself and others. 

    Reading through this section is an important reminder, especially in an industry where you can be exposed to highly sexualized environments. 

  • 24 Feb 2015 7:01 PM | Valerie Calam (Administrator)

    Because our bodies are our main tools for our work as dancers, making sure there is a safe environment in which to both rehearse and perform is crucial. However, some of these items you may not think about until you are faced with a potentially frightening dance space. Always ensure:

    • A proper dance surface: a sprung wooden floor, or marley
    • Proper ventilation, lighting, running water and clean washroom facilities
    • Access to first aid, including ice packs and tensor bandages
    • Temperature: the venue should be between 18 and 32 degrees Celsius at all times, the dance surface should be between 6 and 36 degrees Celsius

    As a dance artist, you have the right to request any additional equipment or measures deemed necessary for health and safety—this includes the rescheduling or reprogramming of rehearsals and or performances.

    Read CADA-ON’s full suggestions for proper working conditions in the Professional Standards for Dance. In addition, read over the Safety Guidelines for the Live Performance Industry in Ontario.

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