© Maya Yoncali

Deciphers is a physical performance by Naishi Wang and Jean Abreu that brings together elements of Chinese folk dance, Brazilian dance styles, spoken word, breath, and ink on paper. Both artists share a concern for the corporeal connections between immigration and translation as a linguistic phenomenon centering the immigrant experience. As co-performers and choreographers, Wang and Abreu make the stage their blank canvas, using raw, improvisational movements to highlight the body as the base of communication and meaning.


Technical Director:
Emerson Kafarowski
Lighting Designer:
Lucie Bazzo
Set Design:
Ivy Wang
Michael Peter Johnson
Robert Sauvey, Dance Umbrella of Ontario
Naishi Wang + Jean Abreu
Guy Cools
Outside Eyes:
Ginelle Chagnon
Access Consultant:
Zed Lightheart
Photography & Film:
Maya Yoncali


Deciphers acknowledges the support of the National Arts Centres’ Visiting Dance Program, the Harbourfront Centre, and the CanDance Network Small Scale Creation Fund.

The UK development of Deciphers was supported through funding from Arts Council England National Lottery Project Grant and High Commission of Canada. Special thanks to Towner Gallery Eastbourne, Eastbourne Council and Take the Space.


© Dahlia Katz

Waawaate Fobister, a proud Anishnaabe from Grassy Narrows First Nation, is an actor, dancer, playwright, choreographer, instructor, and producer. In their work Omaagomaan, the multiple Dora-award-winning artist uses sound, movement, dance, and storytelling to embody Omaagomaan, a non-binary, two-spirit being who, in Anishinaabe cosmology and knowledge, represents the earth as well as the poisonous toxins humans have pushed into it. Omaagomaan themselves incorporates both beauty (onishishin = beautiful) and ugliness (maanaadizi = ugly). Fobister connects this collision of the beautiful and the ugly to the resilience of the Anishinaabe people, as they stitch back together fractured landscapes poisoned by mercury.

flesh and sound

Vías’ Flesh and Sound challenges how live art engages the audience. This new creation by Paco Ziel and Bernardo Alvarado Rojas begins with an installation designed by Siam Obregón to inspire in the spectator a state of listening and mindfulness before moving to a performance. Incorporating the sonic study of pre-Hispanic instruments complemented by contemporary technology, as well as kinetic and acoustic vibrations sourced from the human body, this invitation to step away from Western ways of analyzing, feeling, and perceiving sound asks the audience the following question: how do you listen? Through reaction, disruption, or amplification enhanced by a 360 sound design, the performers trigger movement. Choreography and sonic composition are considered as one, and movements are inspired by images of creatures strongly attached to Mexican pre-Hispanic cosmology, bringing echoes from the past into the present.

Rotating performers :

Nov 8th → Paco Ziel + Bernardo Alvarado Rojas
Nov 9th → Rachelle Bourget + Bernardo Alvarado Rojas
Nov 10th → Isabel Cruz + Rachelle Bourget
Nov 11th → Isabel Cruz + Paco Ziel


Co-creators: Siam Obregón, Bernardo Alvarado Rojas, Paco Ziel.

Performers: Rachelle Bourget, Isabel Cruz , Bernardo Alvarado Rojas, Paco Ziel

Artistic advisor: Ami Shulman

External eye: Diana León

Visual direction, art installation design and set design: Siam Obregón

Sound Design: Eric Saucke-Lacelle

Technical Director: Benoit Lariviere

Lighting Designer: Benoit Larivière

Costume Design: Camille Thibault-Bédard

Official photo: Damian Siqueiros

graveyards and gardens

© David Cooper

Graveyards and Gardens – a collaborative performance installation created and performed by composer Caroline Shaw and choreographer Vanessa Goodman – displays the beauty of how the body remembers, while interrogating the intimacy between our surroundings and the body. This immersive theatrical work examines memory as a process of reconstruction rather than as an exact recall of fixed events. By embracing the various elaborations, distortions, and omissions of embodied memory, the artists create generative performance systems; a “living album” that continues to fold and unfold into itself.

Trigger warning: mild strobing


Co-creators/Interpreters/Set Design: Vanessa Goodman / Caroline Shaw
Costume Design: Vanessa Goodman
Artistic Producer: Hilary Maxwell
Sound Design: Kate De Lorme/Eric Chad
Technical Director and Lighting Designer: James Proudfoot
Video: David Cooper
Tour Agent: Brent Belsher

dead (annulée)


The duo Beauty and the Beast (Amanda Apetrea and Halla Ólafsdóttir) who, for more than two decades, have remained a mythical force in dance are now DEAD. Or their show is. DEAD is a pornographic dystopian dance merged with poetry, music, the beauty of darkness and the in-between, seeing inner and outer realities. Exploring expressions of sexuality, body, and gender with their witchy metal aesthetic cuts gravely demon voices and surprisingly tender moments. They weaponize the power of horniness and lust. A power that they believe can move mountains. The show will practice conscious consent with the audience.

Forget Madonna, Prince, Elvis, Beyoncé, Whitney and Britney. Halla and Amanda never needed their last names and now they take on the greatest mononymes in history and blow you away.

hotter than a pan (cancelled)

Elise Rose

With a soundtrack composed by Danielle Brathwaite-Shirley, this assemblage of dance, text, and action attempts to further an aesthetics of melancholia and alienation, not as a political inhibitor, but as a nexus where radical poetics can be justified and proliferated. The show moves beyond the politics of identification and essentialism by leaning into the undercurrent, the emotional, the motorising, the affective, the non-narrative, and the non-linear. Striving to facilitate and maximise the power of the marginal body, this solo experiments with the articulation of Black and Queer ontologies. 

Malik Nashad Sharpe is a choreographer, performer and movement director based in London, UK.


real talk # 2.0: vectors of adverse desires (annulée)

Yvonne Portra

Different parts club dance party, introverted protest, shy popsicle concert, extreme nap time, faux fur lecture installation, and healing circle, Real Talk # 2.0 deals with erotic ecologies and opaque dramaturgies of sex. Mobilizing queer club aesthetics, pulse, traum-ah, and collaboration with the unseen as a primary mover in the space, the work asks: “In the aftermath of a rupture, how do we tend to the wound ?” Electronic House music will throb throughout the space transforming itself into a live temporal sound bath revealing subliminal messages of what is at stake for us all, again and again, alone and together.

estrella/x is a queer, Afro Guatemalan choreographer, performance artist, and healer born in New Jersey (Lenape territory) and is currently based in San Francisco (Ramaytush Ohlone territory).


Orfeas Skutelis

Anh Vo’s fragmented and collaged multi-media works combine the terror and pleasure of erotic hauntings. Named after a 1975 mass evacuation of children from South Vietnam to the U.S., resulting in a plane crash that killed 78 of those children, BABYLIFT confronts the afterlives of the Vietnam War (a.k.a. the Resistance War Against Imperialist America). Striving to queer a linear masculinist history, Vo weaves this together with cultural memories of the Civil Rights Movement, USAmerican freedom fantasies of the 1960s, and current leftist activism.

Anh Vo is a Vietnamese choreographer, dancer, theorist, and activist currently based in Brooklyn, NYC.

gender diasporist

Karl Cooney

Gender Diasporist is an anti-colonial enactment of active refusal. This interdisciplinary live performance examines Tobaron Waxman’s application for Polish Citizenship as an out, transsexual person of Jewish heritage. While refusing the colonialism of the ‘law of return’ to Israel, and the inherent colonialism of Canadian citizenship, this work is simultaneously an act of solidarity with LGBTQ+ and feminist activists in Poland, who face increasing violence. Using video, photography, vocal performance and artifacts this auto-ethnographic project engages what Waxman calls ‘transsexual knowledge’, to interrogate how borders and concepts of citizenship make moral and ethical claims on bodies.

empty mountain

Victoria Hunt


… and in that forest


multitudes of spinning planets

and in those planets

the most extraordinary lives

  of beings not yet

imagined by you …


empty mountain is a meditation, a filling up followed by an emptying, a layering and unlayering. A moment of rest, echo, and surrender. As an audience member, you are invited to attend part one, part two, or both. Expect slowness, spaciousness, expansion, and letting go.

Rajni Shah’s practice focuses on listening and gathering as creative and political acts. They have invited plural beings Fili Apothicaire and Ses Seçkin Kaya Çınar to make and perform with them over one year. This performance will mark the end of that year-long process.