Dance, Movement, and CI Events in Ottawa/Gatineau and Online

Contact Improv Home Page for Ottawa/Gatineau

Updated June 08 2021 – Mis à jour le 08 juin 2021

Ian! D. Allen Let’s Dance Ian!!

The best way to read this message is using the Newsletter Web Version that is updated mid-week. Click on your favourite events in the Table of Contents. – Ian! D. Allen

CI Dancers at the Ottawa CI dance jam: Ken, Kia, Isabelle, Barbara, AnneMarie, Ian, Marcia

Dance News for  Ian! D. Allen

  1. Ottawa is in full lockdown into June. Stay safe; stay home.

  2. The late Nancy Stark Smith, co-founder of Contact Improvisation Dance, hosted a workshop on the form. It’s all about touch (24 minutes). “The poetics of touch: NANCY STARK SMITH, a pathway into contact improvisation” (In English with Spanish subtitles.)

  3. Ottawa Public Health says be W.I.S.E.:

    • W – Wear a mask or face covering when you are in indoor public spaces and when you cannot maintain a physical distance of two metres (six feet).
    • I – Isolate yourself from others when you are sick (and get tested promptly if you have COVID-like symptoms).
    • S – Stay two metres (six feet) apart from those outside your household.
    • E – Exercise proper hand hygiene; wash your hands regularly or use sanitizer especially before touching your face.
  4. The links to images on the facebook may be broken in this newsletter. They must have changed their policy on access, so at some point I’ll have to go through the newsletter and delete all the facebook references. Event organizers: please ensure you have a non-facebook web site with images to which I can link for your event.

Click on your favourite events in the Table of Contents above or use the web version.
(Outlook/Evolution email users – sorry, clicking above doesn’t work; use the web version.)
See also the Creative Dance and Movement Ottawa/Gatineau group on facebook.
See also the Contact Improvisation Dance Ottawa/Gatineau group on facebook.

Dancers who pursue graceful movement must practice being aware of their bodies and being aware of wordless communication. These skills are particularly important today, when we spend so much time sitting and in virtual realities. Our way of life has taken us further from our own physical experiences and the understanding of the wordless emotional messages of others. For example, contact improvisation makes the dancers listen attentively to the body of their partner. Touch is known to reduce pain, fear and anxiety. – Hanna Poikonen

Near Ottawa/Gatineau/Wakefield/Lanark/CarletonPlace

Events in or originating from the local Ottawa/Gatineau/Wakefield/Lanark/CarletonPlace Region

Events that recur weekly or monthly show only the nearest upcoming event or two. Follow the link for future events.

Sundays at 10:15am – Dance to Nature (outdoors) with Alana

See the Dance to Nature group on the facebook or contact Alana O’Donnell for more information.

Outside Ottawa/Gatineau/Wakefield/Lanark/CarletonPlace

Events outside the local Ottawa/Gatineau/Wakefield/Lanark/CarletonPlace Region

Online Everywhere

“Let’s Dance Together – ONLINE!” (Everywhere!)

Online: May 23 to June 20 – ReMix: online writing and movement with  Majero Bouman

This workshop is for dancers who didn’t know they could write, writers who didn’t know they could dance, and the generally curious who are open to unfolding.

ReMix 1 and 2

The approach for these series is rooted in embodiment practice and select theories of language, meaning, and psychoanalysis.

Learn and Explore:

Come prepared to move, to write, and to share. Each class, we warm up physically and creatively; We share homework; We do a movement and a writing exercise; We settle the exploration.

ReMix conforms to Open Floor International’s Art in Motion stream (AIM): to build both emotional and creative intelligence through a combination of movement and writing. We engage with process as well as product in order to move with the mover, the maker, the editor, and the inner critic.

This workshop is for dancers who didn’t know they could write, writers who didn’t know they could dance, and the generally curious who are open to unfolding.


If you require reduced cost, please contact me for a discount code.

Contact Majero Bouman

Online: Noon Tuesdays May 4 – June 12 – SOMATOMY Module 1 with Erik Iversen

This is a 5Rhythms Foundational Event.

Somatomy is made up of five two-hour sessions starting Tuesday, May 4th at 12:00-14:00 EST and continuing every Tuesday at the same time, until the last session on Tuesday, June 12th, 2021.

This Somatomy workshop connects you to your full body intelligence. Learn and practice how to create a bridge from your mind to your body. Somatomy is an invitation to free yourself of patterns that distract you from being present.

Each session is 2 hours centered around PLAY: Including Shaping and Sensing, Dance, 5Rhythms, Touch, Self Awareness.

Register here:

The Facebook:

See you there!

Online: 10am June 4 to 10pm June 13 – Contact Dance International Film Festival

This is the 5th season of the Contact Dance International Film Festival [CDIFF], celebrating films featuring momentum-based dance created by some of the top creators and dancers in the field of Contact Improvisation. It provides a unique opportunity for both film and dance lovers to experience through film the joy, chaos, and intimacy of human connection through physical movement and touch. Due to COVID, this year’s festival is presented online. Follow the links above or below.

Global: June 19 2021 – The Global Underscore CI Dance Jam

The Global Underscore long-form Contact Improv Dance Jam takes place for four hours simultaneously, world-wide, Saturday, June 19 in 2021. (Contact the organizers for the start time.) Follow the link for a location near you. We have no Underscore practice in Ottawa, alas, but we might have a regular dance jam on Saturday and you can find events in other communities on the facebook Global Underscore page.

The Underscore is a long-form dance improvisation structure developed by Nancy Stark Smith. It has been evolving since 1990 and is practiced all over the globe.

The Underscore is a vehicle for incorporating Contact Improvisation into a broader arena of improvisational dance practice; for developing greater ease dancing in spherical space, alone and with others; and for integrating kinesthetic and compositional concerns while improvising. It allows for a full spectrum of energetic and physical expressions, embodying a range of forms and changing states. Its practice is familiar yet unpredictable.

The practice – usually 3 to 4 hours in length – progresses through a broad range of dynamic states, including long periods of very small, private, and quiet internal activity and other times of higher energy and interactive dancing.

Massachusetts USA: August 2021 – Alternative DNE Summer Dance Camp

Dear Dance Community,

Over the last several months, several committees and workgroups have been working to determine whether we can safely, practically, and logistically hold a true Dance Camp this summer. This process has included consulting with healthcare professionals to aid us in how to think about this.

In the interest of wanting us all to be safe and healthy, we have made the difficult decision that we cannot hold a traditional Dance Camp event as we know it.

However, we are exploring opportunities to hold different kinds of event/s for the community, hopefully this summer and/or fall, that will allow the option to gather at our beloved homeplace, Camp Timber Trails, and come together as a community while taking precautions to ensure individual and collective safety. To this end, we want your input on how to hold possible events in safe and enjoyable ways! We know what we can’t do; now it’s time to be creative about what might be possible, and we want your thoughts and desires to make it happen!

Your first opportunity to share your ideas on what type of in-person event we could create is coming up at the March Virtual Event weekend! On Saturday Night March 20th, we will host a community conversation about alternatives to camp from 5:45-7:00pm! It will be a community brainstorming session. We will break into small groups to get creative about envisioning safe ways to connect in person.

You can register and see info for the March Virtual Event here. If you just want to attend the discussion and not the weekend event, you can sign up here.

We know many of you will be incredibly disappointed that we aren’t having Dance Camp; we are as well and did not make this decision lightly. However, we are excited about the possibilities that are open to us and look forward to exploring our options together as a community.

In Community, Myla Green, Managing Coordinator, on behalf of DNE leadership.

Recurring Online Dance/Movement Events

Weekdays 9am–10am – Online Rise & Shine Shake

Saturdays 12:45pm – Online CI-Inspired Weekly Score & Jam: Beyond Saudade

Sundays 10am – Online I-Opener Dance

Sundays 10am – Online Toronto Dance Jams

Mondays 9:30pm – Online DJ Sillydelic Dance Family

Various – Online Biodanza (en français)

Various – Online Dance Classes

Recurring Events Outside Ottawa/Gatineau/Wakefield/Lanark/CarletonPlace

Recurring Events outside the local Ottawa/Gatineau/Wakefield/Lanark/CarletonPlace Region

I don’t know if these events are now happening online. Contact the organizers.

Picton ON: Barefoot Free Form Dance

Groove Tonic PEC hosts a weekly barefoot, free-form movement and dance event in Picton.

We meet every Wednesday evening from 7–9:00 pm for barefoot, free-form movement and and dance. All are welcome! Wear comfortable clothing, bring water to keep hydrated and a $5 donation to cover the cost of the space. Groove Tonic happens at the Picton Town Hall, 2nd floor above the old firehall (2 Ross St, at King St).

Peterborough ON: Contact Improvisation and other Dance

Peterborough Dance Contact Arsalan Ahmad for details on what’s happening around Contact Improvisation Dance in Peterborough, Ontario. (For wheelchair and washroom accessibility information, contact Arsalan.)

For other Peterborough dance events, e.g. Ecstatic Dance, see Dance Your Bones

DYB’s purpose is to offer an Ecstatic Dance movement practice in an accessible, respectful and safe environment.

Each Thursday evening, we dance together in a beautiful church hall for 90 minutes without interruption. The music varies weekly depending on the dj. We try to use an interesting blend of world music, pop, blues and even classical.

Montréal QC: Biodanza Classes with Catherine Fabiola Lessard

Catherine Lessard Dance and celebrate – Danser, se rassembler, célébrer, s’émerveiller …

Classes in Biodanza and Authentic Movement in and near Montréal with Catherine Fabiola Lessard

Montréal QC: Authentic Movement with Catherine Fabiola Lessard

Catherine Lessard Dance and celebrate – Danser, se rassembler, célébrer, s’émerveiller …

Classes in Biodanza and Authentic Movement in and near Montréal with Catherine Fabiola Lessard

Montréal QC: Weekly 5Rhythms Classes with Erik Iversen

5Rhythms Dance Freeing the Creative Spirit Teaching people to experience the pulsating sensual energy inside them and awakening their connection to flowing breath, rooted feet and a centered alive pelvis – reach up, root down, live in the heart center. Visit or or contact Erik Iversen for more information. (For wheelchair and washroom accessibility information, contact Erik.)

Montréal QC: Weekly 5Rhythms Classes with Lynne Adams

5Rhythms Dance Dance a weekly Thursday night 5Rhythms class with Lynne Adams in Montréal. (For wheelchair and washroom accessibility information, contact Lynne.)

Montréal QC: Ecstatic Dances

Soirée danse Extatique

Québec QC: Contact Improvisation, Communauté de Québec

Contact Improvisation de la ville de Québec

Bienvenue à  tous. Les jams de Contact improvisation seront annoncés dans le groupe par le biais d’évènements. Consultez la publication épinglée pour plus d’information.

Sherbrooke QC: Biodanza with Yves Léger

Classes are facilitated in French (with possible English translation on request): Biodanza Sherbrooke: français and Sherbrook Biodanza: English


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Contact Improv Dance Jam at Earthdance – Ian! and Eva, photo by John Barrett