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The Movement Educator’s Forum (MEF) is an annual week long initiative I, Kelly, instigated 6 years ago. Over the course of one week, the MEF invites at least 5 teachers across fields of practice to lead a movement class followed by a facilitator and peer lead discussion and experiential lab. As a long time member of the Axis Syllabus (AS) community, the event was initially inspired by the AS teacher’s laboratory which assembles AS teachers together to exchange, reflect, advance and re-inspire their teaching practices. The MEF reaches out to movement educator’s from an expanded field of movement and teaching practices.  


Each year a theme is chosen as a fulcrum for practice-based exchange which  foregrounds and valorizes kinaesthetic interpretation, rather than solely linguistic. I have had the experience of speaking about contemporary dance technique on panel discussions amongst other dance teachers and while it often sounds that we are talking about similar things, the particularities and differences unfurl in practice. Each unique training enacts a new body, through ‘trying it on’ in practice, we may better articulate the differences from an experiential perspective.  


To date, the MEF has brought together 30+ teachers from different fields of practice including Contemporary Dance, Continuum, Argentinian Tango, Osteopathy, Body Mind Centering, Voice & Improvisation, The Franklin Method, Chiropractics, Gyrotonics, Occupational Therapy, Choreography, Feldenkrais, Contact Improvisation, Axis Syllabus among many others. (see MEF Archive below). The event routinely gathers movement educators who have never been in studio or conversation together. As a facilitator, this has been extremely heart warming because it gets right to the crux of the event.


Montreal’s contemporary dance community and training ecology is impressively diverse. Organizations like Studio 303, Danse à la Carte, le Régroupement Québécoise de la Danse, Circuit-Est, Nous Somme l'été, Par B.L.eux plus other initiatives and centers (eg/ yoga, martial arts, personal training etc…) are resources for continued practice for movement enthusiasts, dancing and performing artists. Studio 303 alone programs 40 weeks of workshops seasonally which only begins to illustrate the vaste palette of practices available to movement enthusiasts and performing artists in the city.


The MEF acknowledges and celebrates that local movement educators across fields of practice are collectively ‘forming’ Montreal’s moving, dancing and performing community. However, within the community it is not common practice for movement educators to regularly engage in each other’s practice. The MEF aspires to cultivate a space where we can learn from each others practices within the local network of movement educators. In doing so we might demystify what the teacher in the studio next door, upstairs or across town is practicing and teaching. I hold this valuable for plenty of reasons, namely by cultivating relationships, fostering community and building a stronger sense of purpose and meaningfulness in one’s own teaching work by gaining a broader understanding of how we are each participating in the greater movement training ecology. The MEF is not seeking to come to a consensus on how or what to teach, but moreover, to acknowledge and celebrate our differences and how they hang together and apart within the greater Montreal dance community.  


The MEF is committed to provide an affordable, practical and manageable (time-wise) platform for movement educators to gather and exchange and is dedicated to the inclusivity of diverse approaches. The event has been made possible with the co-operation of Studio 303 and a rotating peer team (see Thank-You’s below).



2021 Head-Tail Relations

Karen Fennell

Susanna Hood

Lauren Semeschuk

Andrew Harwood

Kevin O'Connor

2019 Touch & Training

Nita Little, Tactility of Attention

Ivanie Malo Aubin, Fancy Shawl Dancing

Eroca Nicols, Nature Drag and/or Rocks don’t Apologize

Kelly Keenan, Feeling Dancing

Xavier Therrien, Yoga

2018  Metaphor & Movement

Katie Ward, The Franklin Method

Eryn Dace Trudell, Skinner Releasing Technique

Marc Boivin, Contemporary Dance

Sylvie Fortin, Feldenkrais Awareness Through Movement

Charles Koroneho, Body Weather (Min Tanaka) & Movement Culture


2017 Dancing Together

Alanna Kraaijeveld, Mobility & Co-ordination

Eroca Nicols, Contact Improvisation and Brazilian Jiu Jitsu

Kira Kirsch, Axis Syllabus and Contact Improvisation

Nancy Lavoie, Tango Argentin and Massage Therapy

Lucy M. May, Independent Dance Artist


2016 Fascia: Concepts to be Moved by

Dr. Gracovetsky, The Spinal Engine

Amanda Acorn, Contemporary Dance

Lauree Wise, Body Mind Centering

Kevin O’Connor, Fascia Modeling and Dance Scores

Linda Rabin, Continuum Movement

Madelaine Shen, Chiropractics

2015 In Honour of the Foot

Angelique Wilkie, Contemporary Dance

Ashlea Watkin, Occupational Therapy

Jean-Francois Harvey, Osteopath

Dana Gingras, Gyrokinesis

Joanna Abbott, kinesiology

2014 Core

Sara Hanley, Contemporary Dance

Mariko Tanabe, Body Mind Centering

Katie Ward, Franklin Method

Kelly Keenan, Axis Syllabus

Lin Snelling, Voice and Movement

2013 Breath

Warwick Long, Feldenkrais

Catherine Lavoie-Marcus, Contemporary Dance

Kira Kirsch, Axis Syllabus

Linda Rabin, Continuum Movement

Jéremie Fiset, Aekkus


THANK-YOU’S to Studio 303 & Peer Organizational Team

Laurel Koop, Ashlea Watkin, Kira Kirsch, Eroca Nicols, Ruth Douthwright, Kerwin Barrington,

Kevin O’Connor, Rebecca Rehder, Mathilde Loslier-Pellerin & Linda Rabin

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