Recipient of a CALQ Vivacité grant and a CAM-MAI joint mentorship for emerging choreographers to create her second solo, La Pileuse, Sarah Elola was born of blended contrasts. Her story abounds with multiple realities. She cast her first 15 years in kaleidoscopic African tones, rural and urban, traditional and modern, grounded in innumerable customs and cultures. It was in the savannah of the Land of Honest Men, in her native Burkina Faso – where, when one can walk, one can also dance – and in the Ivory Coast that she took her first steps, and grew up with this organic integration of rhythm, dance, song and music in daily life.
Accepted in July 2014 to the PEFAPDA (Artistic and Professional Training Program in African Dance) stream at Nyata Nyata (awarded the Prix de la Diversité 2015 du Conseil des Arts de Montréal) she strengthened her practice and choreographic reflection. She also joined the troupe as a dancer in Mozongi, Nyata Nyata’s flagship work (winner of the 30e Grand Prix du Conseil des Arts de Montréal), touring the Congo with the show in October 2015.
For Eclectik 2016 at the MAI, she created her first solo piece, Dans le ventre de l’éléphant marron [In the belly of the brown elephant] which she would also perform at the World Social Forum in August 2016, and at FIDO (Festival de danse international de Ouagadougou) in February 2017. In the summer of 2017 she was selected to participate in an intensive dance internship at the famous École des Sables in Senegal: Stage International Danses Noires.2 – Mémoire et Évolution. In November 2017 she returned to the MAI with La Pileuse, a creation acclaimed by the general public and dance critics alike.