Raven Spirit Dance
Confluence | Raven Spirit Dance
Firehall Arts Centre Theatre
Duration: 40 mins
Confluence is a dance work that weaves our perspectives, our histories and our bodies to create somatic tapestry that speaks to the resilience of Indigenous women. We embody the space between land and sky through play, prayer, grief and gratitude and are the living testament to the legacy that has been offered to us. Aligning our lives with the direction of the water in a river or geese in migration, we acknowledge we are always in process, shaping and carving through landscapes, creating rhythms and discovering our stories.
Michelle Olson is a member of the Tr’ondëk Hwëch’in First Nation and the Artistic Director of Raven Spirit Dance. She studied dance and performance at the University of New Mexico, the Aboriginal Arts Program at the Banff Centre and was an Ensemble Member of Full Circle First Nations Performance. Michelle works in areas of dance, theatre and opera as a choreographer, performer and movement coach and her work has been seen on stages across Canada. She was the recipient of the inaugural Vancouver International Dance Festival Choreographic Award. She graduated as a Certified Movement Analyst from Laban/Bartenieff and Somatic Studies Canada and is currently teaching at Langara’s Studio 58.
Starr Muranko is a Vancouver-based choreographer/dancer, Mother and Co-Artistic Director with Raven Spirit Dance. Her choreography has been shared both locally and nationally including the Talking Stick Festival, Coastal Dance Festival, Dancing on the Edge, Weesageechak Begins to Dance, Impact Festival and InFringing Dance Festival. She has been a company member of the Dancers of Damelahamid since 2005, touring across Canada and internationally, and is passionate about sharing dance and culture with children and youth. She honours and celebrates her mixed heritage of Cree (Moose Cree First Nation), French and German in all of her work.
Tasha Faye Evans
Tasha Faye Evans is a dance and theatre artist from a legacy of Coast Salish, Welsh, and European Jewish grandparents. Her career continues to be a collection of collaborations and performances with national and international Indigenous artists, including Starr Muranko’s Spine of the Mother, Raven Spirit Dance’s Salmon Girl and Confluence, and her new dance solo in collaboration with carver Ocean Hyland called, Cedar Woman. Tasha also focuses on redress and Coast Salish cultural resurgence, particularly in Port Moody where she is raising her two children.
Emily Solstice Tait
Emily Solstice Tait’s practice is rooted in contemporary dance but happily crosses into theatre, stage management and film. She is of mixed settler and Ojibway ancestry (Berens River First Nation). Her dances have been performed at The Manitoba Museum, The Forks National Historic Site, and along the shores of Lake Winnipeg. Select performances include The War Being Waged (Prairie Theatre Exchange), Actualize (Winnipeg Contemporary Dancers), moi, suel·e (Théâtre Cercle Molière), Confluence (Raven Spirit Dance) and The___ Place video with CBC Arts.
I am a multi-disciplinary iskwêw, independent dance artist, choreographer, producer, and professional Auntie of Nêhiyaw, Métis and mixed settler ancestry. Originally from Treaty 4 territory Saskatchewan, I create work that reflects Nêhiyaw/Métis cosmology within the context of contemporary dance, Indigenous performance, and Indigenous futurism. Fusing interdisciplinary collaboration, de-colonial practices and embodied research methodologies; my work references protocol, ritual, relationship to the natural/spirit world and Ancestral knowledge. My practice is intergenerational and vocational; it’s a living and lived experience. I reside as a guest on the Ancestral and unceded Sḵwx̱wú7mesh (Squamish) Səl̓ilw̓ətaʔɬ/ (Tsleil-Waututh) and xʷməθkʷəy̓əm (Musqueam) territories, colonially known as Vancouver. http://movementhealing.ca/
Produced by: Raven Spirit Dance
Artistic Lead: Michelle Olson
Choreographic Visioning: Michelle Olson, Starr Muranko and Jeanette Kotowich
In collaboration with performers: Michelle Olson, Starr Muranko, Jeanette Kotowich, Tasha Faye Evans and Emily Solstice
Artistic Lineage: Margaret Grenier, Carlos Rivera, Yvette Nolan, Kristy Janvier, Salome Neito, & Tin Gamboa.
Original Soundscore composed by: Scott Maynard
Ä́’sía Keyi – Dyet and the Love Soldiers
All My Relations -Iskwew Singers
Ammalu – Russell Wallace
Lighting Designer: Kimberly Plough
Stage Manager: Jethelo Espaldon Cabilete
Movement Consultant: Donna Redlick