American Realness

Daina Ashbee


Presented by La MaMa
in partnership with First Nations Dialogues, Global First Nations Performance Network and Consulate General of Canada in New York


Wednesday, January 9, 10:00pm
Thursday, January 10, 10:00pm
Friday, January 11, 1:00pm

60 minutes

La MaMa, Downstairs Theater
66 E 4th Street

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Serpentine vibrates the essence of Daina Ashbee’s dark and feminine choreographic practice. Exploring the occupation of space, time and attention, the cathartic work is based on repetition and instance. With simple imagery, slow and sensual movement and a disturbing and powerful original electric organ composition by Jean-Francois Blouin, Serpentine creates a haunting juxtaposition that escalates in its violence. Performed by Areli Moran.

Daina Ashbee is a Centre de Création O Vertigo – CCOV associate artist and supported by the Council for Arts and Letters of Quebec, the Canada Council for the Arts. The presentation of Serpentine for American Realness 2019 is supported by the Consulate General of Canada in New York.

Photo by Daina Ashbee

Artistic Direction and Choreography: Daina Ashbee
Performer: Areli Moran Mayoral
Lighting Design: Daina Ashbee and Areli Moran
Music: Jean-Francois Blouin

Daina Ashbee is a Centre de Création O Vertigo – CCOV associate artist
Production: Daina Ashbee
Delegate producer: Centre de Création O Vertigo – CCOV
Production Director: André Houle – Centre de Création O Vertigo – CCOV
Administration: Valerie Buddle – Centre de Création O Vertigo – CCOV
Communication: Christel Durand – Centre de Création O Vertigo – CCOV
Coordination: Gaétan Paré – Centre de Création O Vertigo – CCOV

Daina Ashbee is supported by the Council for Arts and Letters of Quebec, the Canada Council for the Arts.

Daina Ashbee is an artist, performer and choreographer based in Montreal, known for her radical works at the edge of dance and performance, which intelligently approach such complex subjects and taboos as female sexuality, Métis identity, and climate change. For the choreographer, creation is an instinctive and quasi-spiritual quest, which embraces her relationship with her ancestors, the universe and the entire cosmos. At the young age of 26, she had already won two awards for her choreographies. She was a double prizewinner at the Prix de la danse de Montréal, winning both the Prix du CALQ for Best Choreography of 2015-2016 for her choreographic installation When the Ice Melts, Will We Drink the Water?, and the Prix Découverte de la danse, presented by Agora de la danse and Tangente, for Unrelated. Also, Daina was named by the prestigious German Tanz magazine as one of 30 promising artists for the year 2017 and named one of 25 to watch by the American publication, Dance Magazine in 2018.

Recognized as one of the most promising young choreographers of the next generation since 2015, her work has been presented 67 times in 13 countries and 23 cities. Her work being presented in some of the most prestigious festivals (The Venice Biennale, Oktoberdans, Les Rencontre Chorégraphiques de Seine Saint Denis, and the Munich Dance Biennale) and on the stages of the world (Canada, France, Spain, Belgium, Norway, Finland, Greenland, Germany, Italy, Switzerland, and Mexico).

Daina is the artist-in-residence at Agora de la danse in Montreal until 2020 and the associate artist of Centre de Création O Vertigo – CCOV. In 2018, she returned to the Venice Biennale to teach at the Biennale College, whilst creating a group-piece for 15 students. She continues to tour in Norway, Belgium, Italy, Czech Republic, Canada and the United States, meanwhile creating a new group piece and a solo set to premiere in 2020 and 2021.

Areli Moran (performer) was born in 1985 in Guadalajara, Mexico. As a stage artist and cultural manager, she is currently based in Monterrey (Mexico) and transitioning to Berlin (Germany). Her academic career led her to attend the Royal Academy of Dancing, the Escuela Superior de Musica and Danza de Monterrey, and the Modus Operandi contemporary dance program in Vancouver, Canada.

In 2015 she founded her company Expectante in Monterrey, Mexico, focuses in her creations as well production and management of workshops and performances tours of other national and international artist. Her creations involve diverse collaborations with artist from Canada, Mexico and Berlin, places where her own work has been presented. Her artistic work address and question gender roles and the social standards of behavior. Her curiosity and constant desire of new knowledge push her experience and develop her self in the diverse areas of photography, video, graphic design, technical director and tour director. In México she has being artistic director of festivals and cultural events, looking always to push the dance community to be open for new artistic views and ways of work.

In 2017 she founded the first independent studio for contemporary dance and multidisciplinary work Espacio Expectante, a multifunctional platform and residency space focuses in the research, encounter, dialog and creation for the contemporary art scene.

“Provocative, boundary-busting dancer-choreographer Daina Ashbee has been named one of 25 to Watch” Dance Magazine.»
– Janet Smith, Dance Magazine

“Creating dance as a medium for eliminating taboos has been cathartic for radical, riveting Montreal-based dancer and choreographer Daina Ashbee.”
– Philip Szporer, Dance Magazine

« Daina Ashbee creates brutal but evocative dance work […] She’s really someone to watch […] »
– Jeannette Kelly, CBC