Saint John Contemporary Dance Festival Goes Digital for 2020

Category: arts 195

The ninth annual Saint John Contemporary Dance Festival is now underway with an adapted format for 2020.

Connection Dance Works is pleased to present the ninth annual Saint John Contemporary Dance Festival, which will take place July 20-24, 2020. This year’s festival will be significantly different from previous versions; because of the Covid-19 pandemic and restrictions on gatherings, the festival will be presented in an entirely digital format.

Audiences will still get to experience many familiar festival elements, including site-specific performances and a focus on local dance professionals and emerging young artists. This year, however, the festival will not include a ticketed main stage performance. To help cover the loss of ticket revenue, online donations will be accepted from those who wish to support the company.

“Although we’re a bit disappointed to be unable to offer the full festival experience this year, we’re very excited to try something we’ve never done before,” said Sarah Power, Co-founder and Artistic Director of Connection Dance Works. “We’re always looking for new ways to shine a light on contemporary dance in New Brunswick, and this year we’ve spent a lot of time looking at alternative ways to do that.”

The company has invited New Brunswick dance artists to submit dance films, which will be presented through the company’s website and social media platforms. The films will highlight different areas of the province and will be revealed throughout the week of the festival.

Kicking off the Festival is the SJ Community Movement Project. In previous years, the Movement Project brought community members together to create a dance to be performed at one of the site-specific or kick-off party events. This year, a call was sent to all movers: individuals & families to show us their moves and submit a short clip of them dancing. Videos submitted were edited together along to the soundtrack of ‘Never Knowing’ by Ladd & Lasses, demonstrating our community moving together, separately.

Connection Dance Works is a Saint John-based non-profit professional contemporary dance company, celebrating its 10th anniversary season in 2020. The Saint John Contemporary Dance Festival began in 2011, with a mission to celebrate contemporary dance through live performances and workshops. Its programming strives to offer a wide variety of artistic performances to highlight contemporary dance in Canada. Since its inaugural edition, the festival has expanded to a week-long event with workshops, artist talks, a kickoff party, site-specific performances, and a ticketed main stage show.

 For more information, please visit

A SJCDF release.

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