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Daina Ashbee

A rising star of contemporary dance, Daina Ashbee boldly tackles complex questions about femininity, blood, the loss of control. An object of painful beauty.


A high-pitched sound pierces the northern night; an incantation, a cry, an appeal. A young woman appears, luminescent and strangely fascinating, a forthright gaze. She removes her clothing, seems to want to be released from the restraints of her skin. The pain accelerates, the liquid flows. We are in the heart of a tormented, stressful, secret femininity.

A rising star of contemporary dance, the choreographer Daina Ashbee explores the taboo subject of the menstrual cycle, turning it into an object of painful beauty tinged with symbolism. Drawing from the secular tradition of the seal hunt, she boldly tackles complex questions about blood, vaginal discharge, the loss of control. A splendid performer, Paige Culley expresses the suffering of the body undergoing transformation, the animal body naked and vulnerable, a receiver of light, a transmitter of sound, its limbs savagely thrashing the drenched, dripping ice floe as the body shamelessly screams its discomfort and vexation. And then relief, the engulfed woman rises to the surface. A cycle comes to an end.


Created by Daina Ashbee
Choreography and set design Daina Ashbee
Performed by Paige Culley
Music Jean-François Blouin
Lighting design Hugo Dalphond
Production manager Guylaine Savoie
Administration Valérie Buddle + Stéphanie Murphy
Agent Sarah Rogers
Technical director Pierre Lavoie
Apprentice Émilie Morin
Performers in rehearsal Paige Culley + Stephanie Fromentin + Clara Furey + Esther Gaudette + Émilie Morin

 Pour has benefited from Services de soutien à la production  offered by Diagramme – gestion culturelle.

Daina Ashbee is associated artist to  Diagramme – gestion culturelle.

Written by Diane Jean
Translated by Neil Kroetsch
Promotional video Alejandro Jimenez 

Premiered at Théâtre La Chapelle, Montreal, on September 26, 2016


Daina Ashbee (Montreal)

After only three dance pieces, the young choreographer Daina Ashbee quickly established a reputation as an important local dance artist.

Full biography