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Casa Om Presents... The Dance Deck Cinq (August 26 & 27)

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Casa Om

1745 Napier Street

Vancouver, BC V5L 2N1


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Following The Dance Deck Quatre program of Dance Tales by Serge Bennathan, here is our second and completely new program of the 2017 season:

The Dance Deck Cinq

August 26th and 27th, 2017 (4:00pm-6:00pm):

An intimate afternoon concert of live music and dance.

Featuring creators and performers:

Tom Weinberger
David Harvey
Peter Smida
Ria Girard
Karissa Barry
Chengxin Wei
Ralph Escamillan
Amber Funk Barton
Cristian Markos, cellist

Please find artist's biographies listed below.

Our house, called “Casa Om,” has always been a place of regeneration and creativity. This is our third consecutive season of creating this intimate, outdoor performance space in our backyard where artists have the chance to share their work at a grassroots level. As presenters we strive to give artists a platform where they have the freedom to experiment and share work that is deeply meaningful to them, and we feel passionate about creating an alternative and unique environment from which to share this art with our community.

- $25 tickets online through Eventbrite.

- $30 cash only tickets sold at the door.

We highly encourage you to purchase tickets online since we can only accommodate a limited audience and we would hate to turn you away at the door. We thank you for purchasing tickets in advance and supporting our artists.

There will be an informal dinner reception for audience and performers offered in our house and yard after the show where you can purchase a delicious homecooked meal to further support the artists. We would love to have you stay, meet the artists, and celebrate with us!

Getting here:

~ The #20 bus route comes directly here! Get off at Commercial Drive and Napier Street.

~ Please note that regular street parking guidelines will be in effect. There are meters on Commercial Drive and on the side streets. Some free parking is available on Salisbury St (one block east of Commercial). There is no parking in the back alley or in the permit parking zones.

Artists Biographies:

Born in Israel in 1987. Tom Weinberger graduated from the Amal School of Arts and Sciences and upon graduation joined the Batsheva Ensemble in 2005. He continued to the Batsheva Dance Company from 2008 to 2011, where he worked with Ohad Naharin and Sharon Eyal. In 2012, Tom began freelancing and worked with Barak Marshall, as well as Company E in Washington, DC, where he set both Ohad and Sharon’s work and served as rehearsal director. Tom was a founding member of Sharon Eyal and Guy Behar’s Company , L-E-V, and danced with the Gothenburg Ballet where he performed works by Peeping Tom, Marie Chouinard, and Alex Eckman. He was a guest artist with Michael Keegan Dolan’s-Fabulous Beast Dance Theater (2013), with the Batsheva Dance Company (2014) and with the Forsyth Company (2015). He has been teaching Gaga for the past 9 years, and has taught Gaga, Ohad’s repertoire, Sharon Eyal’s repertoire as well as creating his own work in schools such as the Netherlands Dance Theater Summer Program (2010 – 2014), the San Francisco Conservatory of Dance, the Taipei National University of the Arts, Springboard Dans Montreal and more. He began creating his own work through Batsheva Dancers Create during his time with the Company. In 2014 he won the International Solo Tanz Theater Festival with his solo work, which toured in Brazil and Germany. Most recently, Tom was a guest artist at SUNY Purchase University through the Charles and Lynn Schusterman Foundation residency program.

David Harvey is a freelance dancer, choreographer and teacher based in Seattle. After graduating from The Kirov Academy of Ballet in Washington DC, he studied in the Alonzo King Lines Ballet training program. He was then invited to join Alonzo King Lines Ballet, where he performed and toured internationally for seven years. Currently, he is a dancer with Kate Wallich + The YC and collaborates with Tom Weinberger as well as Bobbi Jene Smith. Harvey has been a faculty member of the Alonzo King Lines Ballet School since 2010.

Chengxin Wei, A native of Dalian, China, Chengxin graduated from the Beijing Dance Academy in 1997, where he studied classical Chinese dance for eleven years and received his BFA degree. Upon immigrating to Vancouver, BC in 2000, Chengxin appeared with numerous contemporary dance companies. Hailed as a “powerhouse performer”(Georgia Straight), Chengxin also danced with Ballet British Columbia for six seasons. In 2004, Chengxin co-founded Moving Dragon, a contemporary dance company that focuses on cross-cultural fusion between Eastern and Western dance styles. In 2012, he obtained him MFA in Dance from the University of Washington and worked as a Visiting Assistant Professor of Dance at Ohio University for two years, where he taught Modern, Ballet and Dance Composition. Since returning to Vancouver in 2014, he has taught as a sessional instructor at Simon Fraser University.

Ralph Escamillan started his training at age 14 at Harbour Dance Centre Vancouver ,BC. His arsenal of performance skills include a verity of street dance styles, ballroom, circus, drag and was a graduated of Contemporary Training Program Modus Operandi (2015). He’s worked with commercial choreographers Paul Becker, Tucker Barkely, Luther Brown, Aakomon "AJ" Jones, Kenny Ortega and Gil Duldulao; and artist Victoria Duffield, Zendaya Coleman and was a guest dancer for Janet Jackson “Unbreakable” tour (2015). Contemporary contracts include: Gadfly Collective (Toronto), Inlayers (Calgary), Kinesis Dance Somatheatro, Out Innerspace Theatre, and in 2014 apprenticed with Kidd Pivot. He is currently working/touring with Co- Erasga Dance, Company 605 and Wen Wei Dance. As an emerging choreographer Ralph explores works that strive to understand the complexities of identity and culture. For more info about Ralph and his work please visit:

Karissa Barry has worked as a freelance contemporary dance artist for 15yrs, as a collaborator, creator, performer, and instructor. She has worked with companies and choreographers such as Serge Bennathan/Les Productions Figlio, Vanessa Goodman/Action at a Distance, Tara Cheyenne Friedenberg, Anne Plamondon, Out Innerspace Dance Theatre, Raven Sprit Dance, Sylvain Émard Danse, and Wen Wei Dance, to name a few. She has toured throughout Canada, China, Europe, and the U.K., as well as Singapore, and NYC. As a creator, her work has been presented at Brief Encounters, Dancing on the Edge, Expanse Festival, Small Stage, la petite scène, Modus Operandi Training Program, and the self-produced project, “STRATEGY THREE”. She has produced two dance on film projects that have been screened in both local and international festivals. As an instructor, Karissa frequently teaches for the professional community, as well emerging professionals in various institutions.

Born and raised in Vancouver, Amber Funk Barton has worked as an independent contemporary dancer and choreographer for 16 years. In 2008 she founded and became the artistic director of the response. She is currently revisiting her connection to pop music to generate movement and intends to use her performance at Casa Om to begin research of a new work.

Peter Smida was born in Kingston, Ontario and completed his professional dance training at Canada’s Royal Winnipeg Ballet School. Over his 9 year dance career, he has had the opportunity to collaborate with and perform works by choreographers such as Crystal Pite, Jiri Kylian, Medhi Walerski, Company 605, Johan Inger, Jrma Elo, and Sharon Eyal. As well as beginning to work extensively in film, Peter has recently created choreographic works for Dances for a Small Stage, Arts Umbrella Dance, and the Shadbolt Centre for the Arts. He is very excited to present his new work in the unique performance space at Dance Deck.

Ria Girard was born in Vancouver, Canada in 1995. In 2012 she joined the Arts Umbrella Professional Training Program under the direction of Artemis Gordon, and graduated from the Arts Umbrella Dance Diploma program in 2016. Ria was part of Crystal Pite’s Singularity project in collaboration with Kidd Pivot dancers in 2014. She performed in Ballet BC’s Program 2 in works by Medhi Walerski in 2016, which lead to an apprenticeship with Ballet BC in the 2016-2017 season under the direction of Emily Molnar. In June 2016 Ria completed Springboard Danse Montreal, working with Victor Quijada, director of RUBBERBANDance. Ria performed works by Ohad Naharin, Sharon Eyal, Emily Molnar, Company605, Emanuel Gat, Lesley Telford, James Kudelka, Tom Weinberger, Cayetano Soto, and Marie Chouinard.

Romanian-Canadian cellist Cristian Márkos has been a member of the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra since 1999. Born in Iași, Romania, Cristian earned his B.Mus in Music Performance from the Music Academy in Bucharest, Romania. He went on to the University of Wisconsin in Milwaukee for post-graduate studies with Mr. Wolfgang Laufer, late cellist of the renowned Fine Arts Quartet.

Wanting to experience a ‘true’ Canadian winter, Cristian sat as Associate Principal Cellist with the Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra for the 2012-2013 concert season. As an accomplished symphony and chamber musician, he has toured with the Mont Blanc Symphony Orchestra under the baton of the late Maestro/cellist Mstislav Rostropovich, and as a soloist Cristian has performed on stages in Romania, France, Germany, Austria, Greece, Italy, United States, and Canada.

In addition to performing, Cristian is also a dedicated teacher and clinician and maintains vibrant private teaching studios at the VSO’s new School of Music and the Vancouver Academy of Music.

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Casa Om

1745 Napier Street

Vancouver, BC V5L 2N1


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