At the close of his final season with Toronto Dance Theatre, we salute Christopher House, and the outstanding contributions he has made to Canadian contemporary dance over the course of his 42 years with the company.
Resident Choreographer for the company since 1981, Christopher was named Artistic Director in 1994. Among the many master works he has contributed to its repertoire, several have been presented by the School, set by our magnificent Training and Performance Associate, Rosemary James. It has always been an honour and a pleasure to be able to include in our programs works like Apollo’s Touch, Barnyard, Colder Ink, Crossfade Miniatures (commissioned by the School in 1986), both the duet and the trio from Fjeld, Four Towers, Glass Houses, Island, Pingo Slink, Schubert Dances, the solo Uplands (created for Pat Fraser), and of course the incomparable Vena Cava.
Christopher has been the Artistic Advisor to the Professional Training Program at the School, as well as a valued member of the School’s faculty, for many years. An accomplished technique teacher, he has also taught classes in Creative Process to successive groups of our second year dancers. He himself is and has been a magnificent performer – no-one who saw him in his beautiful solo Schubert Dances will forget his exquisite musicality – and he has been able to constantly re-invent himself as an artist, both in his choreography and his performance. He has the rare ability to transform himself; to be available to the inspiration of the moment as a performer; to throw himself into unknown territory; to be daring and adventurous; and to invite an audience to witness his spontaneous artistic decision-making. All this experience has informed his teaching, and his ability to relate his knowledge of performance to young dancers.
Christopher has received many awards and honours for his work, including three Dora Mavor Moore Awards, the Muriel Sherrin Award for International Achievement in Dance, the Sliver Ticket Award from the Toronto Alliance for the Performing Arts and an Honorary Doctorate from Memorial University of Newfoundland. He is an Associate Dance Artist of Canada’s National Arts Centre and was recently named a Member of the Order of Canada.
We salute Christopher in his final season with Toronto Dance Theatre, we thank him for his exceptional, unique, and generous contributions to the School, and we wish him the very best, wherever his future path takes him.