I am a performing artist / mover-maker-collaborative-creator, working primarily in experimental contemporary dance-theater forms. From 2014 to 2020, I was living and working in Boston/Providence, and have recently returned to Tio’Tia:ke/Montréal. I am a self-proclaimed misfit thinker and neurodivergent-doer, with an eclectic and expansive practice involving: meditation/mindfulness practices, dance, creative writing, theater, comedic improvisation, acrylic and oil painting, advocacy for The Association for Size Diversity and Health (ASDAH) and, somatic-therapeutic practices, and yoga. My practice encompasses many forms to articulate a concern with embodied consciousness, memory, and identity. The various forms I draw from enable me to create layered responses in experimental contemporary dance-theater, new media, installation, and collaborative performance art. Intuitive and process-driven, my work contains a spirit of improvisation and experimentalism. I make and do things that are themselves punk-y, relational in odd ways, and stand implicitly against normative ideals of quality and functionality. My aim is to make works that serve as catalysts for socially-engaged conversations from which to create further invocations to creative resistance through making. I have created work independently and on commission, but have a preference for interdisciplinary/multidisciplinary/transdisciplinary, and collaborative approaches.
Educator/Teaching: In Boston, I was an Assistant Professor of Dance at The Boston Conservatory at Berklee, facilitating contemporary classes for all BFA Dance program students in their Junior year. I also facilitated improvisational, creative processing and somatic experiencing masterclasses, workshops, and weeklong class series' in open/professional programming like Saturday Switch at AS220, Moving Target at Green Street Studios, The Deep Dance Series at The Dance Complex, to name a few. In addition, I was invited to guest teach at institutions like the Walnut Hill School for the Arts, Providence College, Ecole Superieure de Ballet du Quebec, and Jacqueline Walsh Performing Arts High School, to name a few. This year I will be teaching part-time at a dance school in Laval.
Commissions: I am regularly commissioned to create work for theater, dance, and opera companies, as well as for university and college dance programs. My works have been presented by Le Festival International de la Danse at La Place des Arts in Tio’Tia:ke/Montreal, The Seattle International Dance Festival in WA, The Gibney Dance Center in NYC, Keene State College in NH, Endicott College, The Dance Complex, Green Street Studios, and The School for Contemporary Dance and Thought in MA, Providence College, Brown University, AS220's Modern Movements Festival, Roger Williams University, WaterFire Providence, and Festival Ballet, in RI.
Producing: I was the artist liaison/administrative coordinator for AS220’s Providence Dance Festival and have co-produced five evening-length dance and live music concerts as part of Doppelgänger Dance Collective and HDC Dance Ensemble.
Performing: In recent years, I have danced for and collaborated with choreographers such as Diane Arvanites, Korhan Basaran, Alissa Cardone, Lorraine Chapman, Lina Cruz, Heidi Henderson, Kellie Ann Lynch, Tommy Neblett, Paul Singh, Sydney Skybetter, B.J. Sullivan, Ilya Vidrin and Riley Watts.
Collaborations: I am a founding member, co-maker, co-producer, and performer with HDC Dance Ensemble; a performing arts collective, founded by Gisela Creus (Barcelona), myself, and Orlando Hernández (Providence/Los Angeles). Our works incorporate elements of voice, percussion, improvisation, and storytelling through physical theater/dance to create unique interdisciplinary dance experiences, primarily in a blend of tap and experimental contemporary dance theater. We have been presented by DanceNOW Boston, The Provincetown Dance Festival, Fresh Dance Fridays, AS220's Modern Movements Festival, Roger Williams University, and Providence College. We currently have three duet works and two solos in repertory. For the fall of 2019 HDC was in residence as guest choreographers at Providence College, setting three new works on the student company and performing HDC repertory in the Fall Dance Concert.
iTMRW: For the winter/spring season of 2020, HDC worked on a commission from American Indie Rock Band ARC IRIS. HDC designed the movement, in collaboration with four local dance artists, and performed in iTMRW; a 90-minute dance-theater piece set to a live performance of the futuristic concept album by the Providence art-pop trio. HDC began touring New England in the spring of 2020, but had to postpone our shows due to the Covid-19 pandemic. The next rendition of the production is being supported by The Museum of Science Boston for which we will be filming a 3D version of iTMRW with added animations, which will be rendered to the planetarium dome. The project is in the development phase and will likely span a year of creation.
This past summer I worked on a digital original creation: a music-dance-video sequel to iTMRW with the band: Arc Iris, and performers Marie-Eve Carriere, Kristen Cere and Louise-Michel Jackson, which was supported by a grant from the Canada Council for the Arts. The videos were released in mid-Oct.
TRAUMA + PERFORMANCE: In January 2021, I began work on a new project, with a residency at CCOV (CENTRE DE CRÉATION O VERTIGO ) with Hanako Hoshimi-Caines, Susie Showers and Angelique Wilkie. This transdisciplinary project asks questions about how we might hold space for trauma within artistic spaces, creations, relationships and proposes a novel approach to creative collaboration with the presence of a trauma-informed arts therapist in the rehearsal room. A solo version of this project, titled Liminal Portals, will be presented at an event on mental health and the arts on September 24th, 2022.
In May 2021, I joined the research phase of a project as a performer with Productions Fila 13/Lina Cruz & Orchestre Nouvelle Generation. The production phase will begin in winter of 2023.
I am also working as a rehearsal assistant to Lina Cruz on the production MORPHS which opened at L'Agora de la Danse in October 2021, and was also performed as part of DanceWorks at The Harbourfront center in Toronto in March 2022.
In addition, last year I completed a 500hr Yoga Teacher Training Certification at Naada Yoga, and am now I certified yoga instructor.
Finally, a new-found facet to my performing arts practice has been discovering myself in comedic improvisation, I'm currently performing on a number of troupes, and am joining the House Team for the 2022-2023 season. You can catch me at Improv Montreal Theater in Saint-Henri most Friday or Saturday evenings.
Danielle was born in Pembroke, Ontario, Canada, and began her dance training with Sharron Fleet and Jane Wooding at The FleetWood Dancentre in Collingwood, Ontario. She left home at age 14 to attend L’École Supérieure de Ballet du Québec, in Tio’Tia:ke/Montréal, and five years later obtained her DEC in Dance Performance (Classical Ballet - Contemporary) from L’Ecole Supérieure de Ballet du Québec / Cégep du Vieux Montréal. Upon graduation, she was invited to join Le Jeune Ballet, where she danced for three years and had the opportunity to tour Europe and North America, performing in new works by Thierry Malandain/Ballet Biarritz, Jean-Grand Maitre/Alberta Ballet, Helène Blackburn/Cas Public and repertory works by George Balanchine, Roland Petit, Jean Louis Morin/Martha Graham Company and Brian Macdonald, among others.
She furthered her performing arts training by completing a three-year certificate program at George Brown College in Theatre/Acting. In addition, she participated in numerous intensives and residencies in Canada, the United States, France, Germany, Switzerland, the Netherlands, Belgium, Austria, and the UK in Action-Theater, Forsythe Modalities, Clowning, Physical Theatre, Improvisation, Skinner Releasing Technique, Open Source Forms, Partnering, Composition, and Body-Mind-Centering, to name a few.
Before embarking on an independent career, Danielle was a company member with Ballet Espressivo (2004-2006 -Toronto, CA), Line 1 Productions/Debra Brown (2007-2011-Tio’Tia:ke/Montréal, CA), AmpleMan Danse (2011-2013 -Tio’Tia:ke/Montréal, CA), Productions Fila 13/Lina Cruz (2013-2015-Tio’Tia:ke/Montréal, CA), and most recently with Prometheus Dance (2015-2019 -Boston, USA).
From 2015 to 2018, Davidson was the co-founding artistic director/performer with Shura Baryshnikov, of Doppelgänger Dance Collective, a dancer directed repertory collective which produced and commissioned new works by renowned artists, engaged live musicians, and performed internationally. DDC was also engaged to design movement for theater, dance, and opera productions such as with Bridge Repertory Theater and Ensemble Warhol. DDC self-produced and performed four evening-length dance and live music concerts in Providence and Boston: ''The First Four'' (2016), ''Myths, Legends & Questions'' (2017), ''Experiments in Improvisation'' (2018) and ''Jeanne & Elizabeth'' (2018).
Danielle Davidson is the 2001 recipient of le 1er Prix du Jury from Le Festival International de Danse Encore.
She has received six grants from The Rhode Island State Council on the Arts and two grants from The New England Foundation for the Arts for collaborative projects, and recently a grant from the Canada Council for the Arts.