May 1-3, 2014

Kaha:wi Dance Theatre



$20-$30, $65 Gala Tickets

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When you watch Santee Smith’s work you see her training with First Nations, contemporary and ballet techniques. An incredible and richly produced soundtrack always accompanies the live performance.

Lynanne Sparrow
Artistic Associate – Dance, Performing Arts Department
Harbourfront Centre

  • Details
  • About the Presenter
  • About the Artistic Director

NeoIndigenA is Santee Smith’s debut full-length solo performance. It’s a ritualized journey of transformation between Skyworld, Earthworld and Underworld. A mythical soul dance of life/death/rebirth. Transcendent and primordial, Smith boldly moves us through imagined portals and dances the sacred pathways to human connections to the self and the universe. The spellbinding score features elemental voices of Inuit singers Tanya Tagaq and Nelson Tagoona with musical composition by Cris Derksen, Jesse Zubot, Michael Red and Adrian Harjo.

Kaha:wi Dance Theatre (KDT) is one of Canada’s leading contemporary dance companies. Exploring the intersection of Indigenous and new dance performance, it is internationally renowned for artistry, creative excellence and collaboration. KDT’s embodiment of spirituality within traditional culture and innovative storytelling is conveyed through cinematic imagery and virtuosic performance that electrifies audiences on the world stage.

Founded by Onkwehonwe artistic director/choreographer Santee Smith (Kahnyen’kehàka – Mohawk Nation). Innovative, transformative and culturally power-packed performances distinguish Smith as one of Canada’s most exciting choreographers.

Kaha:wi (Ga-HA-Wee) means “to carry” in the Mohawk language and is a traditional name for Smith’s family. KDT carries culture through dance, theatre, music and design.

Santee Smith, founding artistic director of Kaha:wi Dance Theatre, is a former student of the National Ballet School of Canada, holds a degree in kinesiology from McMaster University and an MA in dance from York University. Santee was an integral part of the Aboriginal Dance Project – Chinook Winds at the Banff Centre for the Arts (1997-2001). Choreographing since 1996, her acclaimed work has been performed nationally and internationally. A sought-after teacher, Santee has taught dance at Canadian Children’s Dance Theatre, Iroquoian Indian Museum, York University, George Washington University, Hartwick College, Trent University, University, Brock University, Waseda University (Japan), and Benemeritus & Autonomous University of Puebla (Mexico) among others.