• Episodes
    Photo: © George Balanchine Trust
  • The Fondation de l’École supérieure de ballet du Québec is delighted to be the recipient of a remarkable donation from Merck Canada Inc. — a work of art entitled Danser la vie by painter Léa Rivière.

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    The Fondation receives a remarkable gift from Merck

    “This gift essentially embodies a rapprochement between the Foundation and the business community,” stated Jean-Paul Bellon, Chairman of the Board of L’École supérieure’s foundation, at the unveiling of the work. He went on to add: “It translates the corporation’s sensitivity to the Foundation’s mission, which is to support L’École supérieure in its pursuit of excellence.”

    “We are pleased that the donation of this beautiful piece of art will help support the Fondation de l’École supérieure de ballet du Québec and assist in the development of Quebec’s finest dancers,” said Jennifer Chan, Vice President, Policy and external affairs, Merck Canada Inc.

    The work, a mixed medium on canvas, is a triptych created between 1998 and 2000. Inspired by dance, the three paintings show a woman whose hair recalls the mane of a horse — a subject favoured by Ms. Rivière, who is considered a world leader in the art of painting these animals. “

    “Horses and dance are guides for humans.“

    Léa Rivière, artist

  • L’École supérieure will present a special edition of its annual show Corps de ballet to mark more than a half-century dedicated to fostering excellence and creating emotion. Under the artistic direction of Anik Bissonnette, this large-scale show will see the 125 young dancers in training at L’École supérieure and graduates of the school take the stage.

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    An ambitious show with special guests to mark our 50th anniversary

    “To celebrate L’École supérieure’s fiftieth anniversary and my sixth year as artistic director, I wanted to revisit the most beautiful ballets in our repertoire and present works by choreographers I love and admire,” explains Anik Bissonnette. The program will feature Act II of Swan Lake, which will allow audiences to appreciate the mastery of the classical technique shown by the apprentice ballerinas, who train six days a week.

    Maude Sabourin, soloist with Les Ballets de Monte-Carlo, will mark her return to Montreal specifically to perform a pas de deux by choreographer Jean-Christophe Maillot, while Sylvain Lafortune, a stalwart with Les Grands Ballets Canadiens for several years, will play a unique maestro.

    Andrew Skeels, an increasingly sought-after choreographer on European stages, will present a new version of Jambes sans repos, which was incredibly well-received last year. The program will also include an original work by Robert Glumbek of the Toronto-based company ProArteDanza. Finally, Gioconda Barbuto (Grands Ballets Canadiens, Nederlands Dans Theater) will present a ballet set to music by La Bottine souriante.

    An afternoon with family

    The bubbly Chantal Lamarre (Infoman, Les Dieux de la danse) will host a show geared to the entire family. Lasting just over an hour, the show will be preceded by activities meant to allow children to discover the world of classical dance.

    A can’t-miss show!

    Corps de ballet will be presented on May 26, 27 and 28, 2016 at 7:30 p.m. Un après-midi familial (Afternoon with Family) will be presented on May 28, 2016 at 2 p.m. Tickets are available through the Admission network or the Centre Pierre-Péladeau (UQAM) ticket office. To view video excerpts: www.esbq.ca/fr/ecole/videos/

    L’École supérieure de ballet du Québec receives valuable support from the Ministère de la Culture du Québec, Heritage Canada, Québecor (major partner) and Mondor (principal sponsor).

  • L’École supérieure is proud to announce the Merci Montréal ! project to be carried out in 2017 within the framework of Montréal’s 375th anniversary celebrations.

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    A project for the Celebrations of Montreal's 375th anniversary

    This project, along with l’École supérieure’s dance steps launching the activities of Québec Danse, was unveiled by Serge Postigo, Deputy Commissioner of Montréal’s 375th anniversary celebrations in the presence of Harold Rhéaume, President of the Regroupement québécois de la danse and Chantal Rossi, the City of Montréal’s Associate Councillor for Culture, Heritage and Design.

    “L’École supérieure de ballet du Québec’s Merci Montréal ! project is perfectly consistent with the program of festivities surrounding Montréal’s 375th anniversary. Through short dance numbers to be performed on different Montréal sites and at symbolic events, Montrealers will have an opportunity to discover and appreciate the grace and vitality of the art of dance,” explained Serge Postigo, Deputy Commissioner of Montréal’s 375th anniversary celebrations.

    “Montréal has built a reputation as an international dance capital, a position that Merci Montréal ! will undoubtedly reinforce in a convivial and spectacular manner through the anniversary year,” noted Chantal Rossi, of the City of Montréal.

    “L’École supérieure wishes to thank the city that witnessed its birth and growth. And thank you in the language of classical ballet is not spoken, it is danced with a bow.” — Anik Bissonnette, Artistic Director of L’École supérieure

    Within the framework of major cultural, sports, social and other events specially created for Montréal’s 375th anniversary, L’École supérieure’s approximately 125 students will perform short dances that embody the identity, essence and very soul of the metropolis.

    “The government of Québec is delighted to support this initiative, which will rekindle feelings of pride and belonging in all residents of the metropolis,” asserted Martin Coiteux, Québec’s Minister of Municipal Affairs and Land Occupancy, Minister of Public Security and Minister responsible for the Montréal Region. “With its Merci Montréal ! project, throughout 2017, L’École supérieure de ballet du Québec will be making available, to a wider public, choreographies performed by talented dancers who will gracefully salute Montréal, our cultural and creative metropolis.”

    “The Merci Montréal ! project is an opportunity to share with everyone Montréal’s tradition of respect, grace and gratitude – a tradition that is basically embodied in classical dance,” concluded Anik Bissonnette.

  • L’École supérieure is proud to coproduce the show Symphonie 5.1, a work by Van Grimde Corps Secrets featuring two young dancers, performing alongside adult professional dancers in an interactive visual environment set to music played live.

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    Two students at the heart of an avant-garde creation presented at the Agora de la danse

    “Isabelle Van Grimde is an artist who successfully explores the new possibilities inherent in digital technologies with stunning multidisciplinary works. Our young dancers are lucky to be able to take part in this artistic process, which is unlike any other in Quebec.”
    Anik Bissonnette, artistic director of L’École supérieure

    At the invitation of choreographer Isabelle Van Grimde, 12-year-old Samaël Maurice and 14-year-old Maya Robitaille-Lopez joined the creative team while continuing to pursue their courses in the professional program at L’École supérieure. “I was extremely proud when Isabelle spoke to me about the work done by Samaël and Maya,” says Anik Bissonnette. “Throughout the lengthy process of creation and rehearsals, they conducted themselves like real pros, and she didn’t even realize they were kids!”

    Students in the professional program at L’École supérieure are given the opportunity to gain experience on stage through the annual show as well as various collaborations with renowned cultural organizations, such as the Orchestre symphonique de Montréal, the Orford Festival and the Fondation de la Place des Arts.

    Students devote between three and five hours per day to dance, and their schedule is specially designed to ensure that no subject matter is neglected with the objective of helping them become complete artists and athletes, responsible citizens, and educated people who give back to the community. The teaching is regularly enriched with the presence of renowned guest ballet masters and teachers from all around the world.

    Samaël Maurice began his training at L’École supérieure de ballet du Québec in 2008. Since 2014, he has taken part in the annual show presented at salle Pierre-Mercure by students in the professional program. In 2013 and 2014, respectively, he was in the cast of The Nutcracker presented by Les Grands Ballets Canadiens, first as one of the Children at the Party, and then in the role of Fritz. Also in 2014, he served as an extra in the Paris Opera Ballet production of Paquita, then in the Houston Ballet production of Marie-Antoinette. Both productions were presented at Place des Arts.

    Maya Robitaille-Lopez has been a student in the professional program at L’École supérieure de ballet du Québec for more than six years. She has taken part in the annual show presented at Salle Pierre-Mercure in May, and in 2012 she took part in the choreographed unveiling of La Petite Danseuse by Degas at the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts. She also performed as one of the Children of the Party, then as a white sheep, in The Nutcracker presented by Les Grands Ballets Canadiens.

    Symphonie 5.1, a work by Van Grimde Corps Secrets

    at the Agora de la danse from January 27 to 30, 2016

  • Grand and magical show, The Nutcracker represents a real gift, both for the young dancers on stage, as well as the spectators. This is why L’École supérieure is particularly pleased to be associated, once again this year, to this production of Les Grands Ballets Canadiens.

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    The Nutcracker, a gift from young dancers

    Around fifty students have the opportunity to participate in this magnificent ballet choreographed by Fernand Nault, former director of L’École supérieure.

    “For them, it represents a defining experience, and for the spectators, it is also a remarquable moment, says Anik Bissonnette, artistic director of L’École supérieure and former fairy of the Grands Ballets. I still remember the first time I saw The Nutcracker: I instantly knew what I wanted to do in life!”

    The roles of Clara and Fritz, as well as several sheeps, reindeers, angels, matriochka dolls and children of the party, and several members of the corps de ballet are current students of the professional, preparatory and recreational programs of l’École supérieure.

    PHOTO: Damian Siqueiros/zetaproduction.com

© 2011 L'École supérieure de ballet du Québec
4816, rue Rivard, Montréal (Québec) H2J 2N6 CANADA T. 514 849-4929