Research Series Showing with Neilla Hawley, Mark Dela Cruz and Emily Solstice

Research Series Showing with Neilla Hawley, Mark Dela Cruz and Emily Solstice

Sunday, October 11, 2020
3 – 4 pm

Online through Zoom


YLDE Research Series Artists-in-Residence Emily, Mark, and Neilla set out to discover what would happen if the three of them collaborated as equals in a choreographic process. They were sent down many winding paths that ultimately led them to questions of connection. How can one connect with someone and bring them into their world, or merge one’s imagination with another’s? How can performers connect with their audience and incorporate them into the work? How can three people with different visions connect with each other in meaningful ways? Their research is a physical exploration of these questions, shaped by the boundaries of the pandemic.

Workshop with Alanna Kraaijeveld: Inspired by Fighting Monkey

Workshop with Alanna Kraaijeveld: Inspired by Fighting Monkey

October 26 – 30, 2020
10 am – 12 pm daily

Online over Zoom – Participants will be emailed daily Zoom links for each class at least 24 hours before the class start time.

$40 Full 5-Day Workshop
$10 Daily Drop-In
Buy tickets here!

Fighting Monkey movement situations – contextual, qualitative, and relational dances – will ground this physical workshop.  We will confront and direct our selves through dynamic and variable – irregular – dances.  Each dance represents a frame to determine and stimulate those areas where aptitudes such as mobility, coordination, perception, and communication are limited or less integrated.

Play, problem solving, and discussion will support experience of the individual in unpredictable environments.  Foundational elements from Fighting Monkey Practice will be offered, namely Zero Forms, Abstract Tools, and Coordinations.  Elaborations based on Kraaijeveld’s research, improvisation and performance experience will be included.

New pathways to learn, understand, and to define what is important will be prioritized.

Please be prepared with the following objects to support practice:

  • A tennis ball or alternative
  • A weighted object, like a light 4 lbs medicine ball  (we will move around this object, not lift it)
  • A few jenga-style wood blocks, at least 2 and not more than 6
  • A belt or strap or sturdy fabric, width of arm span
  • A roll of painter’s tape

Space requirements:

  • Suitable surface for safe movement (hardwood floor, etc.)
  • Enough room to lie down, arms and legs outstretched
  • Enough room to stand, arms and legs outstretched


Alanna Kraaijeveld is a contemporary dance artist.  Her approach to movement practice and performance is centered on context driven, collaborative practices.Kraaijeveld has over 15 years experience and continues to be a sought-after collaborator in the performing arts milieu.  As performer, teacher and creator, her collaborations are numerous: Company 605, École supérieure d’art dramatique (Paris), Justine Chambers, Yves Charuest, Modus Operandi, Marie Claire Forté, Studio 303, Vim Vigor, Sarah Chase, Stella Adler Studio of Acting (NYC), Opéra de Québec, William Parker, Susanna Hood, Louise Bédard, Frédérick Gravel, Elizabeth Langley, among others.She toured internationally with Dave St-Pierre, in productions Un peu de tendresse bordel de merde and Foudres.  From 2004-2008 she was a company dancer of Le Groupe Dance Lab under the artistic direction of Peter Boneham.  Le Groupe Dance Lab was an international centre devoted to the research and development of contemporary dance.  Now ubiquitous in the contemporary arts milieu, the model of ‘the Lab’ was one of the first of its kind, established in 1988.  Since 2015, Kraaijeveld is a student of Linda Kapetanea and Jozef Frucek, developers of Fighting Monkey Practice.Kraaijeveld has a Master of Arts degree in Dance Pedagogy and has taught at institutions and organizations across Canada, in Europe, and the United States.  She represents Fighting Monkey as an *Inspire by FM instructor.  She shares her knowledge of movement across various communities including dance, theatre, sports, and at-risk youth.

Black Lives Matter. We Stand With You.

Black Lives Matter. We Stand With You.

We, the Young Lungs Dance Exchange board of directors and staff, Stand in solidarity with Black communities leading the Black Lives Matter movement across the globe, seeking justice for Black lives lost at the hands of police and systemic racial violence.

As an organization we are dedicated to taking action now to dismantle systemic racism, white supremacy, and systems of oppression, from the inside of our organization, out.

We acknowledge that our board of directors, since the organization’s beginning, has predominantly consisted of white women, and we have historically programmed primarily white artists. We are funded by art institutions that are a product of a colonial system. We acknowledge that we are participating in this colonial system and benefit from white privilege.

Moving forward, as a not-for-profit artist-run support organization operating on Treaty 1 Territory:

We are committed to funding Black, Indigenous, and People of Colour (BIPOC) artists in our upcoming and future Research Series, and ensuring BIPOC representation throughout our programming. 

We are committed to increasing BIPOC representation on our board and selection committees.

We are committed to prioritizing members of BIPOC communities and other marginalized groups in our search strategies and hiring process for a new Executive Director in the Fall.

We are committed to expanding the dance practices supported by our organization, including cultural dance practices from BIPOC communities.

We are committed to building relationships with dance organizations, with artists, and with supporters who are doing anti-racist work in pursuit of creating more inclusive spaces.

We are committed to adhering to the Indigenous Accord with which we have signed.

We are committed to educating our board and staff, starting with reading the Truth and Reconciliation Commission Final Report Summary and discussing it together using the TRC Reading Guide for Non-Indigenous Organizations provided by Manitoba Harm Reduction Network.

Improv Score for the COVID-19 Age

Improv Score for the COVID-19 Age

In lieu of the workshop they were going to be leading in March 2020 that was canceled due to COVID-19, current Research Series artistic team Neilla Hawley, Mark Dela Cruz, and Emily Solstice Tait are sharing with the public an improv score they have put together as a part of their creative research. 

Curious?!? Give it a read, and launch into a physical exploration!

International Dance Day 2020: A Statement from Young Lungs Dance Exchange

International Dance Day 2020: A Statement from Young Lungs Dance Exchange

The current situation around COVID-19 has given us a global choreographic score to live and work by as we navigate this uncertain time together. Remaining physically distant from each other gives International Dance Day added significance this year as we work through something that connects us across the world and effects our physical movement. Dancing expresses all that we are missing right now and it is a reminder how vital this art form is to our sense of connection.

Dance of all forms and styles offers us a meeting place to engage through our bodies and shared stories. A language that is truly shared; young to old, across abilities, backgrounds and around the world. Perhaps now more than ever we feel the push and pull to come together and move our bodies, as social media and online platforms swell with dance classes, parties, performances and living room routines. Dancing has always brought people together and it will once again. When the rhythm of this time shifts, the flood of dancing will once again fill the streets, the fields, the studios and stages. 

We invite everyone to take some time to consider how you dance, how dance connects with and intersects your life and how dancing can ultimately help us heal and celebrate. Thank you to the dance loving public and the funding bodies for your ongoing engagement and support of dance, dance artists and organizations.

On this day Young Lungs Dance Exchange acknowledges all the dance and dancers that have come before this time and we celebrate all the inspiring dancing yet to come. May we take the time to feel the pleasure in moving our bodies. May we continue to work to keep each other safe. May we look forward to the time when we can dance together again and share it with the world. It’s going to be a really great party!

Happy International Dance Day!
Young Lungs Dance Exchange

If you would like to send this statement to your local MP and MLA, please click the download button below for a letter version of this statement.

Below are also links to find your government official’s email address:

Photo Credit: Fighting Monkey Workshop with Alanna Kraaijeveld by Michelle Panting (2019)

Young Lungs Dance Exchange’s Annual General Meeting

Young Lungs Dance Exchange’s Annual General Meeting

When: Tuesday, April 28, 2020 from 5:00 – 6:00 PM
Where: Online on Zoom
Guest Speaker: Deanna Peters

Deanna was a participating artist in the Young Lungs’ 2019 research series! They are a dance artist and representative of CADA/West, residing in Coast Salish Territory (Vancouver, BC). Deanna will be sharing with us their experience of moving forward with an embodied practice during this pandemic, when physically meeting to share a practice together is not possible. Discussion to follow!

This is a free and public event.

Click the zoom link to join the meeting!

Join Zoom Meeting by clicking the link below:
Meeting ID: 208 838 219

Calling in? Find your local number:

Photo Credit: Deanna Peters and Less San Miguel, Young Lungs Dance Research Series (2019), Photo by Reza Rezaï.

A message to our dance community regarding COVID-19

A message to Our Dance Community Regarding COVID-19

Dear Artists, Movers, Friends, Collaborators, Observers, 

Due to the progression of the COVID-19 pandemic, Young Lungs Dance Exchange will be postponing our upcoming Research Series until further notice. We remain committed to facilitating activity which fosters artistic creation, growth and connection, and recognize that we are in a unique position to remain financially supportive to the artists involved in the Research Series during this time of crisis. We look forward to sharing the dance-based research explored by the amazing cohort of artists involved in the Research Series, including Neilla Hawley, Mark Dela Cruz, and Emily Solstice Tait, Meryem Alaoui and Sasha Amaya, as well as essayists Omid Moterassed and Ryan Ad, as soon as possible. 

During this extraordinary time, Young Lungs has been deeply inspired by artists helping to keep us, as a people, moving. We have seen how adaptable humans are, how resilient, and how critical art is in each of our lives. We would like to extend our gratitude and thanks to all the artists out there offering their work, their skills, and their hearts to the public in new and innovative ways. 

We also recognize the broad sweeping and heartbreaking cancellations of performances, shows, and projects, faced by artists in the last few weeks and into the unforeseeable future. The financial implications of these cancellations for artists is huge. For dance artists living in Western Canada, CADA/West has just issued a statement regarding their commitment to supporting dance artists at this time, as well as an update on the Government of Canada’s proposal to commit $82B to assist Canadians who have lost income due to measures implemented to stop the spread of COVID-19. We hope that this information might be of some help to those of you facing this particular financial challenge right now.

Go to for more information.

Our bodies are moving through this together, even if we are, at the moment, physically apart. 

Stay safe folks, and keep on dancing!


The Young Lungs Dance Exchange Board of Directors

[email protected]

Important Upcoming Dates

Important Upcoming Dates


Saturday, March 14, 2020 from 11:00 am – 2:00 pm. Neilla Hawley, Mark Dela Cruz and Emily Solstice Tait have collaborated to bring an improvisation based workshop that will explore the concepts of individuality and connection. They will bring participants into their creative process by sharing and exploring the tactics they use to preserve an individual’s autonomy within a movement context, while making it possible to make meaningful connections. This exploration extends beyond the role of “mover” to apply these concepts to the role of “observer”.

The workshop will begin with a discussion, move on to a warm up, and then dive into the exploration!

 University of Winnipeg, Department of Theatre and Film, 400 Colony, Room 2T15. Tickets are $10 and are available at the DOOR via exact cash only- thank you!

Accessible by elevator. Single stall gender accessible washrooms available.


Friday, March 27, 2020 from 10:30 am – 12:30 pm. During their residency at Young Lungs Dance Exchange, Meryem and Sasha are working from and around the theme of the incomplete. During this workshop they will be sharing some of the strategies and tools used in their research and creation process.

at the Drop In Dance Winnipeg – 1381 Portage Avenue. Tickets are $10 and are available at the DOOR via exact cash only- thank you!

Single stall gender accessible washrooms available.


Join us Saturday, March 28 at the School of Contemporary Dancers (211 Bannatyne Avenue, #104) from 8:00 pm – 10:00 pm as we witness the culmination of research by our 2019 Research Series Artists in Residence.


Sunday, March 29, 2020 from 7:00 pm – 9:00 pm

The Edge Gallery & Urban Art Centre (611 Main Street). FREE!