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DEVELOPING ARTISTS GRANTS
2010 Adjudicator

Contemporary Dance
Sasha Ivanochko

Sasha Ivanochko is a Toronto based dancer, teacher and choreographer.

"Sasha Ivanochko is so damned expressive, you could sell tickets to watch her cross the street."
NOW, June 2005

Leaping into this world feet first from her mother's belly, Ivanochko hit the ground running and spent her early life covered in chalk and sweat competing for the Canadian National Gymnastics team. Her dance training began at the Etobicoke School of the Arts, and she continued her modern dance studies at the School of Toronto Dance Theatre. She started working professionally in 1991, and since then has graced the stage with The Judith Marcuse Dance Company, Toronto Dance Theatre, Coleman Lemieux & Compagnie, and many independents including Tedd Robinson, Peter Chin, Michael Trent, Peggy Baker and Denise Fujiwara.

Ivanochko made her choreographic debut in 1997. Presentations of her choreography include DanceWorks, the Canada Dance Festival, Spring Rites, Dusk Dances, Tangente, Dancing on the Edge Festival and commissions by Toronto Dance Theatre, Winnipeg's Contemporary Dancers, TILT sound+motion, and DanceOntario’s 2004 DanceWeekend, and independent dance artists Helen Husak (Calgary) and Naoko Murakoshi (Kobe, Japan). Recognized as “a mover and shaker” (The Globe and Mail, 2001), her body of work has become renowned for its economy, passion and beauty.

Ivanochko founded blackandblue dance projects in January 2005 and past company projects include the premiere of her critically acclaimed solo "Is this love?" as part of her two-program season at The Winchester Street Theatre in Toronto, June 2005. Also featured was "The Suite of Black Miniature Dances" danced by Susie Burpee, Kate Holden, Julia Sasso and Michael Trent, some of Canada's most talented performers. In July 2006 she made her international choreographic debut with “Cold Night”, at the Aichi Arts Centre in Nagoya, Japan. In November 2006, Ivanochko premiered her first full-length piece “Heaven” at the Harbourfront Centre Theatre, DanceWorks Mainstage Series, with continued performances since then, most notably, the 2008 Canada Dance Festival and at the VI International Theatre Festival of Santo Domingo, 2009. In December 2008, the company premiered Ivanochko's “The future memory heartbreak junction”, a fifty-minute dance and song tour de force, at the Dancemakers Centre for Creation.

A highly sought after teacher, Ivanochko has worked at all the major universities, dance schools and festivals across Canada, and teaches regularly at The School of Toronto Dance Theatre and at LADMMI, l'ecole de danse contemporaine. A rigorous and serious teacher, her highly physical and challenging classes have propelled and inspired many students towards high levels of artistic achievement. Having been recently awarded her second Chalmers Family Fellowship, Ivanochko has developed a new training methodology to both facilitate the learning of her idiosyncratic choreography and to enable participants to access a range of tools needed for a career in contemporary dance.

Ivanochko is a four time Dora Mavor Moore nominee, two-time recipient of the Chalmers Family Fellowship, the 2007 K.M. Hunter Award recipient, and has been featured in the Bravo Documentary Freedom Series.

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