August 2019
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Randy Glynn, Artistic Director of Festival of Dance Annapolis Royal (FODAR) and Susan Tileston, Board Chair, Company of Angels, are pleased to announce the appointment of Michael Caldwell to the position of Associate Artistic Director of Festival of Dance, Annapolis Royal. 

An acclaimed dancer and choreographer, Michael has performed/collaborated with more than 50 of Canada’s esteemed dance creators and companies, including Peggy Baker, Sylvie Bouchard, Emmanuel Jouthe, James Kudelka, Laurence Lemieux, Tedd Robinson, Santee Smith, and Heidi Strauss. He has worked internationally with Antony Hamilton (Australia), Tomeo Vergés (France), and Sacha Steenks (Netherlands). He is the recipient of two Dora Mavor Moore Awards for outstanding performance in dance.

Michael’s work has been commissioned/presented at Citadel + Compagnie’s Bright Nights, dance: made in Canada, Dusk Dances, the CanAsian Dance Festival, Dance Matters, Series 8:08 (resident artist), Porch View Dances, Nuit Blanche (Toronto), Nuit Rose (Toronto), and the Toronto Fringe Festival. His more recent choreographic work explores the intersection of movement, sound, and visual art in contemporary performance. He is currently artistic producer for the Fall for Dance North Festival and co-curator for Kaeja d’Dance’s ‘Wind Down Dance’. He sits on the artistic advisory committee at Dancemakers, and on the board of directors at the Dancer Transition Resource Centre.

“We are excited to bring someone as qualified, committed, and passionate about dance as Michael to the FODAR team,” said Randy Glynn.“The vision for FODAR remains consistent: to create an audience-focused contemporary dance festival staging mixed programs that blend classics from the past with current contemporary work. Michael will bring a fresh perspective and new ideas to that focus.”

The addition of another artistic voice will help lighten the load currently on the shoulders of the FODAR Artistic Director. “Since I took on the role of Artistic Director of Live Art Dance in Halifax in 2016, I am in Nova Scotia permanently; and while this keeps me very in-touch with the provincial dance scene, I am now less immersed in the lively contemporary scene in the rest of Canada. Michael, brings to FODAR a deep contact with all levels of dance in the rest of the country and will be a respected voice for, and representative of, the Festival in Central Canada.”

Michael is as delighted to join FODAR as the Festival is to welcome him on board. “I am thrilled to join the team at FODAR as the Associate Artistic Director.  As a performer in two previous seasons of the Festival, I have fallen head over heels for this community of dance lovers. There is a relaxed summer energy that surrounds the Festival, and it is palpably felt by all of the artists. I am looking forward to sinking my teeth into the East Coast dance scene and understanding so much more about the dance ecology in Nova Scotia and beyond.”

Michael also wants to investigate ways to move dance performance beyond the theatre stage.  “My curatorial interests veer towards site-responsiveness – work that references the ‘site’ of the work, in as many varied ways as can be imagined.  August is ripe for outdoor programming and an excellent way to engage with new audiences. I’m also curious about different ways in which the Festival can provide further opportunities for more artists to spend an increased amount of time in Annapolis Royal, either in creation, production, or performance.”

FODAR 2019 will mark the fifth edition of the Festival and will run from August 13 through August 17. Michael and Randy are hard at work curating an eclectic mix of contemporary artists and performances which will include a popular work choreographed by Randy in 1995 — “Mr. Pinhead”, a performance by Canadian Dance icon Peggy Baker and a residency and performance by the inventive, humorous and highly athletic Throwdown Collective.

Tickets for FODAR 2019 will go on sale in early spring. More information on the 2019 Festival will soon be available at FODAR.ca. 

Photo of Michael Caldwell by Zhenya Cerneacov