Susan Macpherson was a founding member of Toronto Dance Theatre, dancing with the company for 11 years. She also performed with the Danny Grossman Dance Company, the Charles Weidman Company (New York), and the London Contemporary Dance Theatre (U.K.); as a solo artist, her repertoire included work by Anna Blewchamp, Robert Cohan, Murray Darroch, Margaret Dragu, David Earle, Paul-André Fortier, Danny Grossman/Judy Jarvis, Doris Humphrey, James Kudelka, and Linda Rabin. Her solo dance program, A Personal Collection, was presented in Berlin, Berne, London, Montreal, Munich, Ottawa, Paris, Quebec, and Toronto. Since leaving full-time performing in 1986, Macpherson has continued to perform periodically, appearing in the work of Peggy Baker, Rachel Browne, Elizabeth Chitty, Paul-André Fortier, Bill James, Jan Komárek, and Laura Taler. In 2003, she appeared in the revival of David Earle’s Court of Miracles.
In 2008, Macpherson danced and spoke at Premiere Dance Theatre’s 25th Anniversary celebration, From the Horse’s Mouth. Also that year, she appeared in Laura Taler’s short film Love Story. In 2012, she performed Baker’s duet Spätstil with Pamela Grundy, at a gala honouring Miriam Adams. In 2016, she performed for Paul-André Fortier, in a film by the eminent Quebec director Fernand Dansereau. The film, entitled L’érotisme et le vieil âge, was released in Montreal in 2017. In 2019, Macpherson spoke to a large gathering of dance luminaries, introducing the founders of Toronto Dance Theatre, Patricia Beatty, David Earle, and Peter Randazzo, as they were inducted into the Dance Collection Danse Encore Hall of Fame.
Macpherson has been active as an advisor, assessor, and researcher for various arts funding bodies. In 1991, she produced an extensive research paper for the Canada Council that supported the subsequent opening of its funding criteria to include forms of dance other than ballet, modern dance, and experimental dance. She has a B.A. in languages from the University of Toronto, and she has edited several publications of Dance Collection Danse, including two editions of The Encyclopedia of Theatre Dance in Canada. In 2002, Macpherson received a Senior Arts Fellowship from the Canada Council for the Arts, to research strategies for artistic survival beyond late middle age, and to continue her exploration of intersections between dance and visual art.
Macpherson has taught for Toronto Dance Theatre and the School, has held teaching appointments at York University and the Université du Québec à Montréal, and since 1997, has been Artistic Associate at the School. Over the past forty years, she has developed a parallel career in sculptural and functional ceramics.