Regional Networks

Dance Ontario is continues to expand its regional networks with generous funding from the Ontario Trillium Foundation.
Sudbury, Windsor and Algoma/Sault Ste. Marie will join London (LDN), Halton (HDN) and Dufferin (DDN).
The Association will continue to act as a catalyst for collaborators drawn from local arts councils, public school boards, dance studios, and local professional artists who will promote and encourage increased sustainable dance activities. The Regional Project Coordinator is Peter Kelly with local coordinators in each site - Taisa Petruk (Windsor), Richard Kim (Algoma/Sault Ste Marie) and Lauren Foy (Sudbury).
Enriching people’s lives through arts, culture and heritage, this initiative will build access to arts-based learning opportunities and compelling artistic, cultural and heritage experiences, and will impact on the lives of 11,000 people in the communities served.
Dance Ontario recognizes and thanks the Ontario Trillium Foundation for its commitment to increasing access to dance across the province.

A leading grantmaking foundation in Canada, the Ontario Trillium Foundation strengthens the capacity of the voluntary sector through investments in community-based initiatives. An agency of the Government of Ontario, OTF builds healthy and vibrant communities.  For more information on the Foundation, please visit the website at:

Regional Networks Activities

Connect the DotsConference was an exceptionally inspiring and motivating three days! Delegates identified nine priority areas over three sub-sectors (Education/Artists & Venues/Studios) and then broke down needs across the regions.Locations for Connecting The Dots support over the next two years selected were London/Orangeville & Barrie/Orillia with the possible inclusion of an exchange project; Sudbury/North Bay; and Halton, Milton, Burlington, Hamilton. These communities are developing partnerships across the sub-sectors and bringing enhanced or new activities to broader markets within their regions.

The conference was shaped by staff and board over a period of 18 months and funded by the Ontario Trillium Foundation. Our sincere thanks go to all who attended for their honesty and passion,as well as those who performed from young dancers to professional companies who thrilled us with their artistry.
Download the report here.

Planned projects and activities that are outcomes of the conference were:

Halton & Dufferin Regions - Outreach activities around the launch of Arts Milton's new dance series including workshop with Ofilio Portillo, talk with Dance Collection Danse's Amy Bowring and performance by Gadfly; Connecting The Dots Halton Forum @ Oakville's Queen Elizabeth Park Community Centre - full day event with Georgia Simms (Keynote Speaker), performances from students from a local public school, studio and Elizabeth Kmiec.  These were followed by an interactive movement workshop for all participants based on curriculum guidelines and then breakout sessions to identify both regional requirements and how all sectors might work together for their mutual benefit.

Halton DanceNetwork (HDN) is now established, initiating regular meetings  to identify long-term, sustainable projects for the area.  In Burlington, Burlington Performing Arts is now on board and outdoor events included a Magical Evening of Dance last August 2014 at the Burlington Band Shell in collaboration with KooGle Theatre Company.
The importance of establishing an events calendar covering public schools, studios and professional performances is of primary importance for this group.

Discussions took place in and around Orangeville resulting in the formation of the Dufferin Dance Network (DDN) who are working to identify needs of dance artists in their region as well as offering workshops (salsa and line dancing). DDN also scheduled activities including globally inspired dance with local restaurants and a planned collaboration with the Dufferin County Museum with live streaming of one day of DanceWeekend, together with workshops and live performances.
Outcomes:  Workshops, performances and two networks formed.

London (LDN) - FLUX London Dance Festival features local and national dance companies, thrilling audiences with original choreography in a series of performances throughout the core of the city.
Led by Lacey Smith and Bizz Varty, their  vision is to increase accessibility to professional dance in the London community and further develop touring opportunities in South Western Ontario for Canadian dance artists and companies.
- formation of the London Dance Network (LDN)
Outcomes: establishment of festival event, exchange with Guelph, Forum

North Bay - PULSE Conference in collaboration with CODE
May 8-11, 2014

Three nights, two days of dance performances by renowned artists, and classes in western and non-western dance technique, repertory and composition.

Pulse Ontario Dance Conference offered teachers a unique professional learning symposium which included experiential workshops for both elementary and secondary educators, themed break out sessions and opportunities for networking and sharing best practices and resources with other dance educators in the province of Ontario. With the support of CODE, Dance Ontario, Ontario Trillium Foundation and the Ontario Arts Council, it has afforded the Pulse organization an opportunity to present this conference in North Bay inspired to embed a strong connection to First Nations and environmental perspectives. The conference is designed to support your professional development and implementation of the Ontario Dance Curriculum from grades 1-12.

Outcomes: partnership with educators for 3-day conference; Forum, and establishment of network

Niagara Falls - Corporation of Campus Activities (COCA)
On June 2 and 3 we travelled to Niagara Falls for the Corporation of Campus Activities (COCA) National Conference where Dave Wilson led a workshop on presenting dance on campus with guests including Sara Palmieri from Brock Centre for the Arts following an evening of performances by Kaha:wi Dance Theatre, Gadfly Dance and The Parahumans.

Windsor & Chatham (WDN) Spring 2016 saw the city taken over by the Ontario Secondary School Dance Festival when 400 dance students took workshops and presented work at the Chrysler Theatre. Several network meetings have taken place and a perfoprmance event takes place in November which highlights the extraordinary diversity of dance styles in the region.

Algoma/Sault Ste Marie (ASSM) - currently scheduling initial meetings

Sudbury (SDN) - currently scheduling initial meetings

Scheduled for 2018 - conference for the six dance networks to interface, discuss regional issues and set up exchanges.