November 18–19, 2016

A Girl in the Sky Productions

Balancing on the Edge in association with Harbourfront Centre



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  • Details
  • About the Presenter
  • About the Artistic Directors

Co-produced by Thin Edge New Music Collective and A Girl in the Sky Productions in association with Harbourfront Centre

Six collaborative new works interpret what it means to be “balancing on the edge.” New circus and new music collide in boundary pushing, radical circus performances featuring special guest, DJ P-Love.

Thin Edge New Music Collective is a Toronto-based ensemble and presenter dedicated to bringing innovative and eclectic 20th and 21st century music to audiences both existing and as yet untapped.

A Girl In The Sky Productions is a company of aerial artists and high-level theatrically driven aerial performances.


REBECCA LEONARD (Artistic Director)

Aerialist, actor, and choreographer, Rebecca Leonard, has performed locally and internationally with many of the top circus companies in Canada including Hangtime, Circus Orange, HighStrung, Cirque Sublime, Cirque Eos, Lookup Theatre and Anti-Gravity. Film credits include The Tuxedo and Chicago. She has also choreographed for numerous theatre productions.

Rebecca’s aerial performances have been featured at events including the Calgary Stampede, Fashion Cares, Just for Laughs Festival, Toronto Film Festival, CNE, and Vancouver Comedy Festival. She began her circus journey with Toronto’s own Mainspace Circus from 1996-1999. In 2003, she founded A Girl In The Sky Productions, a theatrical circus company with an artistic goal of creating narrative that integrated circus arts as an essential part of the story telling. 2003 was also the starting point of her work in Social Circus with Cirque du Soleil’s global citizenship branch, Cirque du Monde.

Rebecca is an honours graduate of the professional level coaching program of the Ecole Nationale du Cirque and has a honours diploma of Acting from Ryerson Theatre School.  Her teaching experiences include: Head aerial coach/Toronto School of Circus Arts, Cirque du Monde, Cirkids B.C. WiseFool New Mexico, Banff Center for the Arts, Monica’s Danz Gym & aerial and acrobatics coach at NECCA as well as master level workshops throughout the U.S. and Canada in multiple disciplines including fabric, duo-static-swinging trapeze, straps and hoop. A Co-creator of the Hawaii Circus Retreat, a unique fitness experience, she continues to offer winter workshops on Oahu & the Big Island. Her teaching experience ranges from professional level coaching to youth-at-risk programming. She is currently works with an Arctic social circus collaboration between Cirque du Soleil and the Kativik Regional Government of Nunavik. The program is aimed at the youth at risk community and is working to create a model for a sustainable circus program in Nunavik. She is based in Toronto where she coaches, creates and designs & builds circus equipment.

CHERYL DUVALL (Pianist/Co-artistic Director)

Cheryl Duvall is a multi-faceted musician and pianist. She is active as a soloist, collaborative pianist, teacher and adjudicator and has toured and performed throughout Canada, Italy, England, Argentina, the Netherlands and the U.S. She is especially passionate about contemporary music, which has led her along with friend and violinist Ilana Waniuk, to co-found the Thin Edge New Music Collective, now in their third season.  Cheryl is also a member of the experimental project, Bespoken, a mixed ensemble comprised of musicians from different genres, who released a new album, Aigre Douce – music of Nick Storring and Daniel Brandes, in November 2013 under Divorce Records’ Heavy Fog label.  Ms. Duvall is also the pianist for the Toronto based Bell Arte Singers and the internationally renowned Oakville Children’s Choir, to which she has toured and competed internationally with gold standings. Cheryl has attended the Casalmaggiore Music Festival in Italy, the Palazzo Ricci masterclass series, the Toronto Summer Music Festival, the World Piano Pedagogy Conference and held two artistic residencies at the Banff Centre for the Arts. In 2009, she was awarded a SSHRC grant for her pedagogical research on how to incorporate aspects of the Alexander Technique into lessons with beginner piano students.  Besides performing, she maintains a full private piano studio and adjudicates piano competitions across Canada.  Ms. Duvall completed an Honours Bachelor of Music, majoring in Piano Performance and Theory and a Diploma of Chamber Music from Wilfrid Laurier University as well as a Master’s of Piano Performance and Pedagogy at the University of Toronto. Her main teachers and influences include Guy Few, Chris Foley, Midori Koga, Carmen Piazzinni, Nina Tichman, Henri-Paul Sicsic, and Anya Alexeyev.

ILANA WANIUK (Violinist/Co-artistic Director)

Ilana Waniuk is a versatile violinist and contemporary chamber music addict with interests ranging from classical music and improvisation to visual arts. She has held artistic residencies at the Banff centre for the Arts, Avaloch Farms Music Institute and Le Pantographe in Moutier, Switzerland, and has been a guest artist in residence at the SoundSCAPE festival of contemporary music in Italy.  Ilana has participated in the Bang On A Can Summer Music Festival at Mass MoCA, and been a fellow at the Norfolk Chamber Music Festival New Music Workshop. Along with pianist Cheryl Duvall, Ilana is a founding member and co-artistic director of the Thin Edge New Music Collective (TENMC). Ilana has performed at contemporary music festivals including Open Ears in Kitchener/Waterloo and the Royal Conservatory’s 21C festival in Toronto as well as with the Madawaska String Quartet, Essential Opera, Pendulum Ensemble, Mississauga Chamber Music Society, NUMUS’ Perimeter Players, Westwood Concert Series, Chicago’s Ensemble Dal Niente, and The Music Gallery’s Emergents Series. This summer Ilana will have the opportunity to tour across Cape Breton and Ontario as part of the Bicycle Opera Project. She received a Graduate Performers Certificate from Northern Illinois University where she studied with Blaise Magniere, and Marie Wang of the Avalon String Quartet and was a recipient of the Dutton String Fellowship. Ilana completed her Master’s degree in performance at the University of Ottawa studying with David Stewart, and received her undergraduate degree in performance and a diploma in chamber music from Wilfrid Laurier University where she studied with Jeremy Bell and Jerzy Kaplanek of the Penderecki String Quartet.  Ilana is a winner of the 2014 Orford String Quartet Award.