For all who enjoy ballet, this English-language film presents an insight into the dance that only dancers ordinarily see. It is an engaging film portrait of the famous Canadian husband-and-wife team, Anna Marie and David Holmes (also seen in the McLaren film, Ballet Adagio). We see their busy lives as international dance stars, their private interests and, above all, their dedication to the absolute refinement of ballet movement.
The NFB’s 8th Academy-Award winning film. This short film is an impressionistic record of a flamenco dance class given to senior students of the National Ballet School of Canada by two great teachers from Spain, Susana and Antonio Robledo. The film shows the beautiful young North American dancers—inspired by the flamenco rhythms and mesmerized by Susana's extraordinary energy—joyously merging with an ancient gypsy culture.
The NFB's 24th Oscar®-nominated film.
This short film by Norman McLaren is a cinematic study of the choreography of ballet. A bare, black set with the back-lit figures of dancers Margaret Mercier and Vincent Warren create a dream-like, hypnotic effect. This award-winning film comes complete with the visual effects one expects from this master filmmaker.
This short film addresses the revolving cycles of human conflict through contemporary dance. Celebrated choreographer Crystal Pite and dance filmmakers Marlene Millar & Philip Szporer commemorate the fading legacies of WWI, while also creating a moving homage to Pite’s mentors and contemporaries, whose lives and short careers are pitted against the fleeting nature of the dance art form. Featuring Theodore Ushev’s haunting and distinct artwork, the film explores the themes of conflict, loss, and rescue we all experience as we cycle through states of love and war.
Warning: Although this film was shot in 3D, the streaming and downloadable versions are available in 2D only.
This short documentary profiles the traditional music and pageantry of Polish-Canadians in Manitoba. The heritage and national traditions of Poland were brought to Canada by immigrants and sustained across generations. The colourful traditional dress and lively music of Polish-Canadians is captured by ethnomusicologist Laura Boulton, a pioneering woman in the educational documentary film movement whose goal was to “capture, absorb, and bring back the world’s music.”
The spectacular annual powwow at Manawan. Gilles Moar once saw a bear dancing, and this inspired him to pass his culture on to his daughter and the young in his community.
Since 2004, the travelling studios of Wapikoni Mobile have enabled Quebec First Nations youth to express themselves through videos and music. This short film was made with the guidance of these travelling studios and is part of the 2008 Selection - Wapikoni Mobile DVD.
This short film pays tribute to ballet dancer Anik Bissonnette as she takes the reins of the École supérieure de ballet du Québec. Having dazzled audiences for decades with her astounding talent, she now teaches the rigorous fundamentals and secrets of movement that underlie her art. Bissonnette's grace is reflected through the mirror of time. As we watch the steps and movements of the young dancers she has inspired, we realize that we are witnessing the most beautiful of dances—the transmission of knowledge.
This film was produced by the NFB in co-operation with the National Arts Centre and the Governor General's Performing Arts Awards Foundation on the occasion of the 2014 Governor General's Performing Arts Awards.
When Mavis Staines took the helm of Canada’s National Ballet School in 1989, the pedagogy of ballet was due for an evolution. Driven by a belief system that honoured tradition but challenged outdated practices, Staines set in motion a paradigm shift that has transformed ballet training in Canada and around the world.
In this short film by Norman McLaren, dancers enact the Greek tragedy of Narcissus, the beautiful youth whose excessive self-love condemned him to a trapped existence. Skillfully merging film, dance and music, the film is a compendium of the techniques McLaren acquired over a lifetime of experimentation.
This short documentary is a portrait of Sylvie Mazerolle, a young woman for whom dance is as vital and fundamental as breathing. Tracking her process, the film also takes a look at dance in her home province of New Brunswick. In French with English subtitles.
This documentary was made as part of the Tremplin program, with the collaboration of Radio-Canada.
From a festival of folk dances at the 1966 Canadian National Exhibition, an exciting selection of Canada's best amateur groups. The dances range from the seductive Hawaiian to the familiar Cossack. From all the major language groups of Canada, here is evidence that traditional cultures are expressed and maintained through the art of the dance. A film without words.