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© David Wong

J’ai pleuré avec les chiens

Daina Ashbee

For her first ensemble piece, the extreme choreographer Daina Ashbee celebrates the female body in a ritual composed of minimalist landscapes.


Bodies in synergy merge in a floating garden. Human sculptures make a quiet appeal for meditation. J’ai pleuré avec les chiens (I Cried with the Dogs), the first ensemble piece by the extreme choreographer Daina Ashbee, unfolds like a ritual celebration dedicated to the female body. Quiet contemplation composed of meditative waves and the rustlings and murmurs of nature.

In a minimalist landscape driven by cycles of change, the dancers fluctuate between possibilities: from animal to woman, mundane to spiritual, from pain and sorrow to ecstasy.Renowned for her intimate solos and duos that probe the turmoil of violence, in this piece Daina Ashbee portrays a resurgence of the power to act in a community of five women aged 24 to 58. Down on all fours, they experience the elation of a new harmony and equilibrium but soon are flipped upside down, eluding the weight of gravity. Alone together, they breathe into the wound.


Produced by Daina Ashbee
Choreographed by Daina Ashbee
Performed by Imara Bosco + Francesca Frewer + Areli Moran + Élise Vanderborght + Angélique Willkie
Music Polly Lapkovskaya
Lighting Design and Technical Director Karine Gauthier
Outside Eye Andrew Tay
Production Director André Houle
Rehearsal Directors Areli Moran + Lucie Vigneault

Co-produced by Festival TransAmériques + Centre de Création O Vertigo – CCOV + KVS Brussels Stadstheater + Rencontres chorégraphiques internationales de Seine-Saint-Denis + Agora de la danse + Centre national des Arts (Ottawa) + BIT Teatergarasjen (Bergen)
Developed with the support of National Arts Centre’s National Creation Fund (Ottawa)

Residencies KVS Brussels Stadstheater + Cardiff Festival + Banff Centre for Arts and Creativity + Harbourfront Centre (Toronto) + Agora de la danse + Centre de Création O Vertigo – CCOV

Presented in association with Agora de la danse

Written by Myriam Perraton-Lambert
Translated by Neil Kroetsch

Premiered at Festival TransAmériques, Montreal, on May 27, 2020


© Patrice Mathieu

Daina Ashbee (Montréal)

Artist, dancer and choreographer, Daina Ashbee stages bodies as though they were veritable monuments: forms and spaces of meditation, memory and resilience.

Full biography