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Laurentians Dave St-Pierre The Urgency to Dance

Par le 26 September 2017

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Born in Saint-Jérôme, Dave St-Pierre is one of Québec’s most talented choreographers. Suffering from cystic fibrosis, he nonetheless lead a brilliant career as a contemporary dancer before his ailment began limiting his capabilities and decided to become a choreographer instead. After a successful lung transplant (the ordeal was documented in the 2012 film Over my dead body by Brigitte Poupart), he resumed his career and performed around the world.

This audacious dancer and choreographer has built up an impressive array of artistic achievements, notably with Brouhaha Danse, from 1990 to 1996. He later danced for numerous Québec choreographers, among them Harold Rhéaume, Daniel Léveillé and Jean-Pierre Perrault, touring across Canada, the United States and Europe. St-Pierre also participated in different types of theatrical productions, notably the musical Notre-Dame de Paris. In film, he participated in two Cinéquanon Film productions, including L’enfant de la musique, in which he played the leading role of Mozart.

 

After founding his own company in 2004, Dave St-Pierre began creating pieces that are at once savage and messy, outrageous and provocative, touching and tragic. The first part of his projected trilogy, La pornographie des âmes, is regarded as a torchbearer for raw energy. St-Pierre immediately made his mark. It was presented five times in Montréal and won for best show in Frankfurt in 2004. La pornographie des âmes was also presented in Munich, Berlin, Salzburg, Wolfsburg and Amsterdam. Praised both by the press and the public, the piece was presented multiple times across the world. La pornographie des âmes (2004), Un peu de tendresse bordel de merde! (2006) and Foudres (2012) were seen in many important festivals such as Le Festival d’Avignon, and prestigious venues including the Théâtre de la Ville de Paris and Sadler’s Wells (London). His works La Pornographie des âmes and Un Peu de tendresse bordel de merde!, two powerful, provocative and poetic group pieces, created in urgency, have been widely successful.

 

In parallel, the company has produced the shows Over my dead body (2009), Bibelot (2010) and Fake (2015). In Fake, Dave St-Pierre meets Céline Dion, played by a young cross-dressed actor, as he questions what is authentic and what is fake in an artistic approach.

 

Movement in the work of Compagnie Dave St-Pierre is raw, always alert. Jerky gestures, violent attrapés, fragile embraces, employing nudity often. Not concealing the difficulties in performance, nor the fatigue and effort. St-Pierre wants everything on the table, simple and unvarnished, warts and all.

 

Dave’s choreographic work has featured in many plays in Montréal, such as in Le traitement, directed by Claude Poissant at the Espace Go theatre in 2005. Brigitte Poupart approached him to collaborate on her show Cérémonials and the Théâtre du Nouveau Monde asked him to direct movement in the classic La Tempête (The Tempest), directed by Victor Pilon and Michel Lemieux.

In parallel, he has also collaborated with Cirque du Soleil. In 2004, he signed the choreography for the mega-show Zumanity, presented to more than 200 000 people at the Montréal Jazz Festival. The same year, he reworked certain choreographic parts of the show. In 2011, Love became his third collaboration with Cirque du Soleil.

 

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