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September 26th - 30th 2022

​This year’s MEF proposes “Readiness” as a launching pad to explore how different practitioners envisage and mobilize what it is to be, and to become, ready. With “readiness” we propose a pretty open term that could be used to describe agility, response-ability, or preparedness, but ultimately leaves space for a multifold of interpretations. Over the course of a week 5 teachers across fields of practice are invited to lead a movement class followed by a facilitator and peer lead discussion and experiential lab. Perhaps, by the end of the week our normalized ways of understanding what it is to be ready will be blasted open by the ways of others.


Monday, September 26th
Alida Esmail et Trevor Copp // Liquid Lead Dancing : gender-neutral partnering

Liquid Lead Dancing is a gender-neutral system of partner dancing created by Trevor Copp, Jeff Fox, and Alida Esmail. It’s a system that re-examines the lead/follow relationship dynamics in traditional Ballroom and Latin dances (e.g. merengue, salsa, bachata, tango, waltz) and proposes key moments that allow switching roles within the dance. In this session, Alida and Trevor will explore the crossover between Ballroom/Latin and Contemporary dance using Liquid Leading as guiding principles. We will navigate through the notions of touch, consent, and gender stereotypes in partner dancing, among others. Most of all, we will move, talk, experiment, and engage in collective discovery!

Alida Esmail, BFA, MSc is a Tio’tia:ke/Mooniyang/Montreal-based dance and theatre artist originally from Burlington, Ontario. She has training in Contemporary dance, Bharatanatyam and Ballroom/Latin. As a Creator she is interested in socio-political content and questioning topics related to her identity and community. Alongside her performance career she is also involved in innovative Arts and Health research which has been published in reputable peer-reviewed scientific journals. Trevor Copp is a Hamilton based Theatre maker who draws on training as an actor, ballroom/latin dancer, and mime to create innovative social justice performance that blends physicality, image and narrative. Together, Alida, Trevor, and Jeff shared the TED stage in 2015 to share Liquid Lead Dancing. Since, the talk has reached over 750 000 sets of eyes and the trio has conducted 30+ workshops at National and International events including Feminist Festivals, all-women prisons, education summits, and consent events in partnership with Planned Parenthood. 


Tuesday, September 27th
Hanna Sybille Müller // Contemporary Dance: language and movement

We will approach readiness through the lens of care. To build a physical basis to care for ourselves and thus for others, human and non-human. We will let the knowledge of our body guide us to our individual readiness and investigate what it means to be ready and what there is to play with if you are in a state of readiness. “For Joan Tronto and Bernice Fischer, this (care) includes everything that we do to maintain, continue and repair “our world” so that we can live in it as well as possible. That includes out bodies, our selves, and our environment, all of which we seek to interweave in a complex, life-sustaining web (Tronto 1993, 103, emphasis added).”* 

The practice will include breathing, listening to ourselves and to others. From these very simple and essential movements we will question the scale of our breathing and listening, and perhaps wild dances emerge.

Hanna Sybille Müller is a choreographer, dramaturg and dance artist living in Tiohtiá:ke/Mooniyang/Montréal. Her main focus is language, movement and its interrelations. Sybille is interested in both language’s and the body’s strange, magic and ordinary potencies. She has been questioning what it means to collaborate with humans and non-humans, especially in her most recent collaboration with Erin Robinsong: Polymorphic Microbe Bodies which premiered as a somatic dance film (webcast) in 2021 at Tangente in Montreal.

Her most recent work Moving through the Archive (2022) in collaboration with Galerie UQO in Gatineau questions the objectiveness of archives and archiving. This work additionally led to the exhibition The instability of the Archive (2022) at Galerie UQO. Sybille teaches a weekly class at Studio 303 in Montreal called The Creative Body – make dance think say. She recently shared her approach to thinking through and with movement at the Geopoetics Symposium in Cortes Island.  Hanna studied dance at the Rotterdamse Dansacademie (RDA) and received a diploma in media studies at the Berlin University of the Arts (UdK) in 2012.

* In: Matters of Care. Speculative ethics in More than Human Worlds. 2017 by María Puig de la Bellacasa , page 3


Wednesday, September 28th
Maryse Damecoeur // Preparing the autonomic nervous system – with a focus on the polyvagal theory

In this workshop we focus on the autonomic nervous system. Using polyvagal theory, we learn about the three body states (ventral, sympathetic and dorsal) and the longest nerve in our system, the vagus nerve. This workshop is an exploration rooted in science and in the intuitive knowledge of our bodies. We will try to answer the question: How can we recognize and alter our state in order to prepare ourselves?

After studying sociology, Maryse pursued a career in contemporary dance for 10 years. Then, her curiosity led her to study Non-Violent Communication (NVC) and psychology. Maryse is currently pursuing a doctorate in psychology as well as a certification in NVC. She is interested in trauma, the nervous system and somatic approaches. Maryse is also involved in the dissemination of psychological knowledge through the writing of popular scientific articles and the creation of a podcast ( In the long term, Maryse wishes to develop an individual and group clinical practice as well as to pursue her mission of sharing psychological knowledge.

Note: To prepare for the workshop, I invite you to listen to the podcast episode I created on polyvagal theory:


Thursday, September 29th
Aurélie Brunelle  // The Flamenco body

At the heart of my flamenco dance practice are the teachings of Juan Carlos Lérida and his “empirico flamenco” method. His method seeks to transmit flamenco to all kinds of bodies, through simple exercises, but touching the flamenco corporality, outside of cultural and historical references. As the flamenco body emanates and/or comes from a “flamenco state”: how can it be “prepared”? How can this state be sought through a physicality, setting the table for its manifestation? We will explore this state through exercises that explore rotation, weight and the opening/closing of the flamenco body.

Originally from Tiohtià:ke/ Montreal, Aurélie (Elle/ She/Ella) practices flamenco in its traditional form, as well as in its more exploratory form, towards less connoted representations. She has participated as a performer/collaborator for various Montreal choreographers, including Myriam Allard and Sarah Bronsard. She is currently working on a creation project with musicians Dominique Soulard and Alvaro Echanove and is pursuing a research-creation project at Uqam. She is interested in the flamenco body and its potential as a sensory, physical and emotional vector.

See a video of a collaboration with Alvaro Echanove: Echanove :


Friday, September 30th
Peter Jasko // Flying Low

Flying Low has been my base for about 25 years. Over the years, I developed my personal approach to this technique and created my personal way to deliver some juicy dancing. This class focuses mainly on the dancer’s relationship with the floor while using spirals and curves at most of the times. I will deconstruct some principles of Flying Low technique and create different movement patterns to mostly fall and rise up. Using all speeds, directions and energy levels, the class will go from fast to sweaty to surprised. 

In 2001, Peter graduated from the J.L. Bella Conservatory of dance, Banska Bystrica, Slovakia.
He continued his higher education at the University of Music and Dramatic Arts in Bratislava, SK, for a year before entering the international school of dance P.A.R.T.S. in Brussels, BE, (2002), under the artistic direction of Anna Teresa de Keersmaeker.

He has been involved in the dance community in different parts of the world as a performer, choreographer and teacher for over 20 years. His professional experience includes dancing/collaborating/choreographing with/for international artists and companies.

Since 2001,  he  has collaborated with David Zambrano as both a performer and as assistant in his classes and workshops. In 2006, Peter cofounded Les Slovaks Dance Collective and launched their first creation: Opening Night. This experience (a creative process that lasted one year) laid the cornerstone for a collective way of working and democratic decision-making. In 2009 Peter Jasko created and danced Solo2009. In 2014 he began to collaborate and perform with Montreal dancer Clara Furey. Her approach fosters dialogue between the different kinds of mediums that make a living art work, inviting them to interact in a horizontal hierarchy. His latest collaborations are linked to the names such as Bill Coleman, Lucy M.May, Mohamadreza Akrami, Peter James, Clara Furey, Luka and Atom Jasko (his children). For the past 20 years, he has taught in about forty-six countries around the world.

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