Double bill


SEPTEMBER 8, 2022 - 8PM

SEPTEMBER 9 & 10, 2022 - 7PM

SEPTEMBER 11, 2022 - 4PM






Ticketholders are also invited to the cocktail


Discussion with the artists on September 9

The order of the pieces is subject to change.

1st work - 30 minutes


Sabor de mi corazón, chapitre I : cumbia

Welcome to the sonidero! Drink, dance, and sway to cumbia’s enchanting rhythm. Born of a union between African drums and Indigenous flute, cumbia’s soul is rebellious, playful, sensual, and multifaceted. Spreading across Colombia, Latin America and then the world, cumbia is the queen, the mamá who opens her arms to all and soothes every sorrow. Join us on a festive journey to explore the heritage of this musical genre and the cultures that developed around it.


Choreography and performance Diana León and Paco Ziel

Original music Paco Ziel

Rehearsal direction Jean-Sebastien Couture

Lighting, scenography and costumes Adriana Ruiz “Clarisse Monde”

Dramaturgical consultation Eduardo Ruiz

Afro-Colombian dance consultation Daniel Díaz

Vocal coaching Mamselle Ruiz

Songwriting for “Sabor de mi corazón” Diana León and Paco Ziel

Technical direction Marcin Brunar

Set construction Charles Keating Sands

Assistance Adele Ross, Stephania Suarez, Christopher Laplante

Logo design Arturo Camacho

Photo and video Studio Épiphanie

Partners Conseil des arts du Canada, Conseil des arts et lettres du Québec, Écoscéno, Danse à la Carte, Circuit-Est centre chorégraphique, Académie du ballet métropolitain, Maison de la culture Côte-des-Neiges, Centre des loisirs de Saint-Laurent

United by our love of cumbia, we began to play this music in our improvisational practices, in search of the expression of “Latin flavour”. Fascinated by the effects of cumbia on the body and state of mind, as well as the infinity of movements it provokes, we carried out an in-depth study of its history, styles, notable artists, and dances. With all these tools, we have put our experience and our knowledge as contemporary dance artists at the service of this culture, allowing it to permeate our artistic practice and learning from it. Thus, through experimentation and play, we have created a choreographic and musical score that shares, in an immersive way, what cumbia is for us at its core.

Originally from Mexico, Diana Léon studied classical dance at the Tecamachalco Ballet Studio and at the National Ballet School of Cuba. She then perfected her training through various contemporary dance workshops in addition to training in various dance improvisation techniques. Her experience led her to work as a ballet corps for the National Dance Company of Mexico, as well as Les Grands Ballets Canadiens de Montréal. Nourished by her own dance creation projects, she founded the company Vías, which she now co-directs with Paco Ziel. Her work with Vías has been presented at Montréal, arts interculturels (MAI), as well as in several renowned theatres in Mexico. She was part of the multidisciplinary laboratory Quantum Collective and has worked as a freelance performer with companies such as Sylvain Émard Danse, Anne Plamondon Productions, Skeels Danse, and Je suis Julio. In recent years, Diana has begun to develop her skills as a singer and songwriter, incorporating them into her dance practice.

Paco Ziel is a choreographer/performer/composer originally from Mexico with a completed training at École supérieure de ballet du Québec. In parallel to his studies, he had the chance to explore several body techniques such as Gaga, the Rubberband method, yoga, Feldenkrais, and meditation. Upon leaving school, he worked with the companies Cas Public and Vías, which he now co-directs with Diana León. He is now a dancer and artistic coordinator with RUBBERBAND. In 2014, he founded the multidisciplinary laboratory Quantum Collective, presented twice by Tangente in Montréal. Paco has worked with other Montréal artists and companies, such as PPS Danse, Anne Plamondon, Andrea Peña and Martin Messier, and has been a guest teacher at Springboard Danse Montréal and at the Domaine Forget. He is also a self-taught filmmaker and photographer and has recently begun to explore electroacoustic music production.

Born in Mexico City, Adriana Ruiz “Clarisse Monde” studied scenography at Escuela Nacional de Arte Teatral, where she received her master’s degree in textile design in EDINBA. She won the prize for best costume in the 4th  Design Biennial of Mexico. She was also a winner at the Jaguar Awards in 2014 and 2016 with the productions La Misteriosa Muerte de la Madrina Varila and Los Niños de Carbón. In 2013, she was nominated for best costume design at the International St. Tropez film festival for Dissent. Since 2008, she has been executive producer for plays like Eduardo II, directed by Martín Acosta, and El Sueño de Martina, a collective creation. She designed costumes for plays like Las pepenadoras by Alaciel Molas, Huellas de Personajes Ficticios Bajo la Luz de la Luna Realista, directed by Abraham Jurado, and Arrullos para Benjamín, directed by Hasam Díaz, amongst others. She also designed costumes for operas by the company FIGAROSY in Yucatán from 2013 to 2015. As a lightning designer, she worked with Vías for the piece On this path, you are sure to get lost and other dance productions in different genres, such as ballet, contemporary, flamenco, and folklore. She has been a jury for different contests and showcases in Durango, Hidalgo, and Chiapas. She is also a guest teacher for lighting design, costume design, and production in different parts of Mexico.

2nd work - 40 minutes

Nicholas Bellefleur


A safe space is not a place. It’s a way of being, a state that emerges and spreads, a queer utopia. In this anthological performance that oscillates between LGBTQ+ youth’s fantasy and daily life, between rehearsals and clubbing, a group of friends desperately tries to feel safe again. Like a rift in time, this work is a dream of togetherness in difference, a celebration of complexity and nuance that bares us to the core, condemns violence, tests the limits of authenticity, and embodies inclusive and compassionate solutions.

Interpersonal·Performance art·Poetic

Choreographic project by Nicholas Bellefleur

With the complicity of Chéline Lacroix, Jontae McCrory, Brian Mendez, Caroline Namts, Elle Roy, Noël Vézina

Management assistant Issac Koji Endo

Lighting designer and technical director Claire Seyller

DJ and outside eye Mélusine Bonillo

Outside eyes Andrea Peña, Helen Simard

Musical direction Raphaël Valensi

Photo/video and video editing Em P

This project is a catalyst for an inclusive revolution.

Embracing non-linearity, our process is shaped by collective multiplicity, transformation, and introspection.

We come together through a shared desire to elevate perspectives from cultural, sexual, and gender pluralities to deconstruct our cognitive biases, develop practices of mutual aid and resilience, and exemplify behaviours that we would like to see in society, in support of the idea of a benevolent, cooperative, sustainable, and equitable world for all.

A safe space for whom? By whom? Is it achievable? How can we familiarise ourselves with the indeterminate, and welcome disagreement and dissent as integral and beautiful parts of the complexity of living together?

To embody the issues of everyday life and to try to release them on stage in front of you, without pretending that our safe space is universal, nor pretending that these questions can be answered in a 40-minute contemporary dance work: that is our challenge. May this work become a resource, a praxis and a tool for collective emancipation, and a breach in time to dream together here and now, to allow ourselves to feel the warm illumination of a horizon imbued with potentiality.*

*translation from Cruising Utopia by José Esteban Muñoz

A movement-based artist, Nicholas Bellefleur is a queer person located in Tio’tia:ke (Montréal). His work investigates the ethics of care, the praxis of safe-r spaces, consent, response-ability, decoloniality, and healing justice orienting efforts towards explorations of utopian and dissident horizons of being-with. His practice studies the confection of open choreographic systems and aims to democratize dance for all bodies. After graduating from École supérieure de ballet du Québec, he joined Ballet BC as an apprentice, then Cas Public for two seasons. Dance made him move in Canada, USA, Mexico, Europe, and China. In 2019, he reunited with Tio’tia:ke, initiated the choreographic laboratory A SAFE SPACE, and accompanied Wynn Holmes in taking care of Lo Fi Dance Theory. His body is also moved by projects with Virginie Brunelle, Le fils d’Adrien danse, and Andrea Peña & Artists.

Chéline Lacroix is a contemporary dance artist based in Tio’tia:ke. Chéline is most inspired when collaborating, whatever the form it may take. It is important that a process illuminates the creativity of each individual in the room. Entering the contemporary dance community shortly before the pandemic, Chéline found a type of collaboration with these periods of solidarity. Building more introspection into the history and patterns of their movement practice helped challenge and nourish their identity. This personal practice has seeped into their own choreographic research and work as a performer.

Originally from Detroit, Michigan, Jontae McCrory started his dance training at Western Michigan University at the age of 19. In 2017, McCrory attended the year-long Dancers Course with BalletBoyz in London, England. Throughout his training, he has had the privilege of learning works by Kyle Abraham, James Gregg, Frank Chaves, and Aszure Barton. As a filmmaker and choreographer, Jontae has had works featured in the 2017 American College Dance Association Gala Concert, Chéries-Chéris-Paris Film Festival, Rendez-vous Québec Cinéma, and BBC Network London. Jontae started working with contemporary company RUBBERBAND in 2018, while guest performing with Decidedly Jazz Dance Company later in 2020. Currently, Jontae is working with Andrea Peña & Artists while freelancing in Tio’tia:ke (Montréal).

Born in Montréal, Brian Mendez starts his dance training at the age of 20 at Urban-Element Zone (2013), where he learns hip-hop, waacking, and dancehall. Later, he studies contemporary dance in a pre-university course at Collège Montmorency (2014-2016) until he joins École de danse contemporaine de Montréal (2016-2019). Brian then discovers voguing, a genre that originated from Latin-American and Afro-American LGBTQ+ communities in Harlem, New York. The lifestyle that comes with voguing is for him an expressive form that brings together a whole community. Now a graduate from EDCM, Brian keeps expanding his knowledge on voguing and its culture to share it with Montréal.

Overflowing with the desire to learn, to discover and to find herself, Caroline Namts simply seeks to dance from one universe to the next. Throughout her personal and professional development, she burns from a perhaps unfulfillable desire: that her body becomes so vulnerable that a witness can see the integrality of her experience.

Passionate about dance, Elle Roy explores movement both on stage and in front of the camera. A graduate from École de danse contemporaine de Montréal, Elle has prospered for the last four years as a principal dancer with the dance company Van Grimde Corps Secrets. A freelance artist driven by a desire to dive into diverse creative universes, Elle also works beside prestigious musical artists. Motivated by the refinement of her relation to movement and to the body, Elle makes the leap in front of the camera. Curious to explore dance through mediums like photo and video, she devours moments when her dancing moves away from the spectacular.

Noël Vezina is a queer, interdisciplinary, dance and movement artist based in Tio’tia:ke/Mooniyang (Montréal). Largely self taught, Noël’s creative process is highly intuitive and organic. Approaching performance as a tool to connect deeply to the self and to others, the artist’s work often takes on ephemeral and intimate forms. Noël strives to be radically soft, honest and vulnerable, appraising not-knowing and never perfecting. To be kind and loving is essential.

Issac Endo is a multidisciplinary artist working in both the arts and entertainment industries. Initially trained as a circus and dance performer, he was invited to become the National Circus School’s first student of direction and dramaturgy under the guidance of Howard Richard, where he focused on “What does it mean when your medium is other people?”, graduating in 2019. His work increasingly focuses on environmental/scenic realization and the exploration of objects and spaces. Creating props, costumes, scenography, and apparatuses, he seeks ways in which an environment can inform and shape the ways people interact with and inhabit them, and blur the distinction between performer/spectator and object/subject. He has worked with directors like Marlene Millar, Anthony Venisse, Kyra Jean Green and Claudel Doucet, and his ongoing projects include the Valby Ruta Project, a circus film collective, A SAFE SPACE, workshops exploring group dynamics and nonverbal communication, and Warm Up, an immersive movement jam.

Claire Seyller is an artist whose main medium is light. While completing her degree in Performing Arts-Theater at the University of Strasbourg, Claire began her self-taught apprenticeship in light. She continued her training at the National Theater School of Canada in the Production program. Since then, she has gone on to collaborate with artists and companies from the younger generation, such as Charles-Alexis Desgagnés, Théâtre des Trompes, Satellite Théâtre, Théâtre à l’Eau Froide, Théâtre Kata, Grand Poney… Her involved and inspired nature brings Claire to assist various lighting designers on dance, theatre, and music shows. Thoughtful and inhabited by her practice, she recently started a master’s degree in Research and Creation at École supérieure de théâtre de l’UQAM.

Originally from Colombia, Andrea Peña is a multidisciplinary artist whose creative practice transverses the fields of art installation, choreography, and design. Her works are focused on the creation of critical, alternative, performative and spatial universes that question the individual within society. Peña’s choreographic language is characterised by its vulnerability, complexity and rich physicality, which extends beyond mere movement through a conceptual research approach. After a professional career as a dancer with Ballet BC and Ballets Jazz Montréal, Andrea founded Andrea Peña & Artists in 2014. The company has been recognized with numerous awards and commissions for their conceptual, visceral, and highly rigorous creations, recently including the 2018 Hong Kong International Choreography award and the 2018 Banff Arts Center’s Clifford E. Lee Canadian Choreography Award.

Helen Simard is a choreographer who works in Tio’tia:ke (Montréal) since 2000. After having worked with Solid State Breakdance – a collective of creation in urban and contemporary dance for twelve years – and participated in nine multi-headed creations, she decided in 2012 to carry out her own projects. She invites musicians and dancers into the studio to create hybrid, often deafening shows, such as NO FUN (2015), IDIOT (2017), REQUIEM POP (2019), and Papillon (2020). Helen is currently artist-in-residence at Playwrights’ Workshop Montreal as part of their interdisciplinary writers’ lab. She takes this opportunity to write her first play, When Your Baby Dies. A bachelor in contemporary dance from Concordia University (2000), she also holds a master’s degree in dance from UQAM (2014).

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