Saturday, January 29, 2011


Buddies In Bad Times Theatre presents
Toronto’s 32nd annual convergence of contemporary performance
Feb 16 – 27, 2011
Festival Director Laura Nanni


Festival Sponsor TD
Media Sponsor NOW Magazine

The Schedule at a Glance – a fully downloadable and printer-friendly schedule is now on-line:

More programming info is available on the website:

Canada’s premiere experimental performance festival returns to Buddies in a new two-week format. Over 100 local and international artists offer up fresh live encounters in contemporary theatre, dance, performance art, music and hybrid forms. This year’s line-up includes sacrilegious celebrity impersonations, utopian science fiction, mass pop-up performances in secret spots around the city, and all kinds of glorious transgressions.

-Mainstage Evenings: Wed – Sat, beginning at 8pm - Different programming each night
-Sunday Socials: an affably social day of politically-minded performances and events - PWYC
-Mobile Works: artists infiltrate the streets of Toronto with surprising performances designed for public spaces - FREE

Wed – Sat, Evening Pass $20
Sunday Socials, PWYC
Mobile Works/Offsite, FREE
12 Alexander St. Toronto, ON
Box Office 416-975-8555
follow us: or twitter @yyzbuddies

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Warm the cold month with a dream a hot travels......

Free Travel Advice For Strangers
an ongoing project by Laura Nanni

So its cold right now..... thinking of a HOT getaway? Check Out Laura Nanni's Travel Advice For dream up your next vacation.


In early September 2009, I was walking along Brunswick St. (or Major?), when I came across a boy around six or seven who had set up a 'FREE TRAVEL ADVICE' stand on the sidewalk. A woman gardening behind him, who I guessed was his mom, noticed that I had crossed the street to take a closer look and assured me, "He's serious." Intrigued, I asked him about his travel tips for Nova Scotia, a place I was eager to visit. Why not, right? After consulting an atlas, and asking me a few questions: "What time of year were you thinking?" "Do you have any allergies?" "Have you ever been to Yarmouth?" he suggested a 6-day itinerary that included a traveling from Halifax to Inverness at night, 3 days of hiking along the northern shore, a shopping trip, a boat tour and a visit on the last day to Lunenberg where the Bluenose was built. After this I thanked him and asked if he had ever traveled to Nova Scotia. "No" he told me, "But my grandmother did." I told him I thought he'd really like the place, that I would keep his advice in mind and then I said goodbye.


I decided to take my trip to Nova Scotia this summer. I arrived without a map or plan except for the itinerary the boy suggested. Along the way I retold the story of the boy, asked for directions, collected many hand-drawn maps and depended on the kindness of strangers. The journey was eye opening, challenging and magical in many ways.

I never caught this boy's name or made note of his address, but have since decided to begin a search to find him again. First, to thank him for the advice and let him know how the trip went and second, to ask if he'd be interested in joining me to create an adventure, a set of directions for strangers to follow in the city, along the lines of some of the other work that I do.

This past summer and fall, I set up a mobile 'FREE TRAVEL ADVICE' stand in and around the Annex, retelling this story, sharing accounts from my trip to Nova Scotia and asking others for help to find the boy. Postcards and letters were also written to help with the search and handed out as I traveled door-to-door.

I also decided I wanted to create a piece for the boy to experience. While the search party began, I started collaborating with three 'experts' of: land (a geologist), sky (an astrophysicist) and sea (an oceanographer), to create a set of journeys in Toronto, meant for this boy to experience and test out, with the following criteria for each one: it must allow him to navigate, to make choices that influence the outcome of his journey, it must give him the opportunity to see his city in a new way and it MUST be fun.


Recently I moved online to help spread the word through facebook:

If you know anyone who lives in The Annex or used to, that might know the 'young travel advisor' or have seen the 'FREE TRAVEL ADVICE' stand on that street please send them to this page. The page is also place for documenting the search for the boy (a.k.a. young travel advisor), the creation of adventures to be taken in the city and to share creative tips for travel from me and others, all in the spirit of 'free travel advice' FROM and FOR strangers.

Through this page I'm also letting people know of events related to the project i.e. where and when the travel advice stand is set up next, if an adventure tour is taking place, if there is a lead in the search, if the boy has been found, etc. I welcome questions and comments. The next impromptu set-up of the FREE TRAVEL ADVICE stand and Annex search will be early next month. Stay tuned...


Sunday, January 16, 2011

Ordering Dances in Brazil

Morena Paiva and her collective, Prague Leve

Site - Specific Dances on the beach.

Check them out.

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Intersection Project Performance #4 - St. Lawrence Market

St. Lawerence Market
December 20th, 2010

video by: Simone Maurice

Intersection Project #4 - St. Lawrence Market

Intersection Project #4
December 20th, 2010
video by: Simone Maurice

Intersection Project #4 from Intersection Project on Vimeo.

Response to Performance#4

December 18th/St-Lawrence Market
By Thomas Chiasson-LeBel

It’s almost Christmas Eve and the St. Lawrence market is swarming with customers. Some are walking fast, already thinking about the dinner they’ll have to cook for their relatives. They are rushed. In the midst of the crowd, something is about to happen. I am confident of this, I have been invited, I just don’t know exactly where ‘it’ will take place. I ask the first passerby:
-Have you seen dancers or a dance show somewhere around here?
-Oh yeah, it’s just there! Look!
I turn in the direction she’s pointing only to find…nothing! But then something catches my eye. There, on the median strip of the road, two dozens or so people are milling about. The way they move leaves no doubt: they are dancing.

As I get closer to see what is going on, I overhear a conversation between a homeless newspaper vendor and a pedestrian:
-What is going on?
-I don’t know, said the paper man, its art!
This exchange neatly summarizes the whole situation. Apathy is always the enemy of meaning.

Paradoxically, dance is the least intuitive art. Least intuitive because we do not get the meaning immediately. When looking to a dance performance, ideas, words, feelings and emotions are not bursting into one’s mind as it does with other forms of art. Paradoxically, because when we speak, the gestures that come-along with the words are consistent with the meaning. I cannot but think of Bakhtine who insists, in his essay on materialist linguistics, on the importance of tone and gesture in understanding the meaning behind words. The ‘F’ word, for instance, can be employed and interpreted in a myriad different ways. It all comes down to body language and tone. It can mean «I hate you» if used with the middle finger, or it can signify «you are funny! I don’t believe you» if said to a good friend after he/she just made an incredible affirmation. If gestures are so intimately related to the meaning, why is it so hard to understand what message or meaning each choreography conveys? Is it because the meaning is too culturally embedded? Is it because the contemporary dance has developed a hermetical body language?

The newspaper seller didn’t get the signification conveyed by the dancers, and worse, but understandably perhaps, he thought the meaning wasn’t meant for him. He was probably wrong on this last assumption. But he is not the only one who has a hard time getting the meaning of contemporary dance. I am probably one of them. By chance, the choreographers of Intersection Project have paid attention to people like me when preparing their show.

Looking at the spectacle, a first meaning is obvious. They are dancing in the middle of the street, on a narrow strip of ground, without music, giving another flavor to the space. But very few people stop. For many, it’s simply ‘business as usual.’ They don’t notice what is really going on or they don’t care. What’s going on is ‘art’, and for them it can exist as long as business goes as usual. The fact that the dancers are trying to say something, and people don’t care, is probably part of the signification the dancers are trying to convey. It is exactly behind such feelings that a government can hide when deciding to atrociously expel artists from institutional recognition.

A second meaning, and probably the most important, is that those dancers are still there. With no means, they mean. They decided to stand up (or in this case : turn, flip, jump, twist and much more) and share their meaning publicly, out of the spaces reserved for specialists. Even when institutionally rejected, they still express themselves.

A third meaning can be discerned also: in the simple choreography. A group of dancers are moving individually, minding their own business, and they suddenly gather together. Something attracts their common attention. A threat? Just after, one after the other, they fall, and their bodies seem disarticulated. But instead of falling on the ground, alone, and being left there, the others form a human chain to support her and lead her to a place where she will be safer, far from the frontline for a few minutes, where at her turn, she too will become part of the support chain.

I am probably wrong in what I got from this show but I am pretty sure to be right on one thing. We are more than just animals simply because we produce meaning. If I don’t get what somebody says, instead of turning my back, I should ask him/her to repeat it until I understand. And if few people are listening, it might make perfect sense to go out on the street and yell it publicly.

Tuesday, January 4, 2011



 dance crosses urban spaces
 artists meet audiences
 ideas travel between us

Dear Artists,
This is a reminder for our performance #5 on Jan 22nd!

Driven by the success of May 1st 2010 Public Performance in Toronto, organized in conjunction with Montreal artist Normand Marcy and Tangente, Laboratoire de Mouvement Contemporain, Priscilla Guy and Kate Nankervis are launching Intersection Project, an initiative that aims to highlight the presence of artists in urban landscapes. Through pedestrian and simple movement vocabulary in city landscapes, the dance is accessible and belongs to anyone who is walking by. Bodies become organic sculptures against urban architectures.

The performances organized by Intersection Project are opportunities for artists and audiences to meet in unexpected and unofficial settings; a reminder performance art also lives outside theatres. Art is essential and it lives everywhere we decide to allow for it. Art reflects the common needs and wants members of society share.  Intersection Project is an occasion to re-iterate the spontaneous and  engaging nature of art as performance emerges from urban architectures and melt with the city landscapes.

Throughout the upcoming year, Intersection Project will organize 10 monthly performances in the Toronto's
downtown area, gathering dancers, actors and performers from diverse backgrounds. In the nature of spontaneity, there is no promotions or marketing for the events. We believe the recurrent aspect of the project will stimulate curiosity and interest for it.

We are looking for performers to participate in the fifth performances of the year!
Saturday, January 22nd. Looking for up to 25 performers. Participants must be available from 11:45am to 2:30pm at least.

**Intersection Project has applied for funding to cover artists fees. However, until the results of grants applications and confirmation with our sponsors, there will be no artist fees. As part of your registration, we will track your HOURS as PERFORMERS for each event and participating artists will be paid retroactively as we get funding results. Artists involved must be ready to participate as they believe in the project and mandate and volunteer their time in the case funding is not successful. It is important for us to pay participating artists, and we assure to you all efforts will be made to provide proper fees as the project continues. Thank you for understanding. 

**Schedule of the Day for January 22nd:
11:45am to 12:45pm-check in/rehearsal
1:00pm to 2:00pm-performance
2:00pm to 2:30pm- break/gather for reception
2:30pm to 5:30pm-reception

Performance details including the score, the arrangement, the locations for the performance and the reception will be sent ONLY TO CONFIRMED PARTICIPANTS. All locations chosen are in the downtown area (Christie to Yonge / Bloor to Queen's Quays, always accessible by bike, car and TTC) 



We hope to see you in January!
 Priscilla Guy & Kate Nankervis