The Moving, Dancing, Knowledge series engaged learning communities within and beyond the university to highlight dance scholarship and practice, the role of dance and movement in physical and mental well-being, and the considerations of dance as both an artistic and activist form that embodies intersecting identities. Building from “Dance Beyond Performance,” a panel hosted in 2020 by the Institute for Dance Studies and the Well Being Collective at Hart House, this exhibit shares key insights from dance scholars, artists, and activists working within the University of Toronto.
Through this exhibit, we invite you to explore the movement of your body through this space.
Each dance artist, scholar, and activist featured on these walls tells a story of how dance has moved them. Interspersed among these quotes are short movement scores that invite you to reflect on your own story in relation to dance. These movement scores provide you with a prompt or task to interpret in this space. Whether it is noticing your breath, feeling your weight, or finding care through your movement, we invite you to listen to the stories held within the muscles, flesh, and bones of your body. We invite you to notice all the knowledge being released through the movement of your body—all of the sensations that arise from being here, in this place.
Jose Miguel Esteban
Administration Assistant, Institute for Dance Studies
Assistant Professor, Centre for Drama, Theatre and Performance Studies, UTSG
Director, Institute for Dance Studies
Community Partnerships Coordinator, UTSC
Hart House Program Associate (Former)
Administration Assistant, Institute for Dance Studies
Thank you to Michelle Brownrigg, Day Milman, Saša Rajšić, Gillian Lewis, and the Hart House Team for their support of the Moving Dancing Knowledge Series. And thank you to all of our contributors whose work and insights have made this exhibit possible.
Sebastian Mena is a fourth-year undergraduate student, double majoring in Latin American Studies and Political Science at U of T. Prior to entering into academia, Sebastian was an independent dance/performance artist based in Toronto where he performed both independently and in collaboration with established artists in the dance and performance art milieu. Sebastian has danced under the bright lights of local and domestic stages as well as venues from around the globe. Sebastian is very excited to be returning to dance as an executive team member with the University of Toronto Festival of Dance. He is thrilled to be collaborating and learning from the other team members to bring the festival back to live in person performances after 2 years of virtual programming.
Dr. Kara Patterson is a physiotherapist, an Associate Professor in the Department of Physical Therapy at the University of Toronto and a Senior Scientist at the KITE-Rehabilitation Research Institute. She leads the RELEARN lab which strives to advance neurorehabilitation practice in order to improve mobility outcomes and psychosocial well-being for people living with neurological conditions. Her research interests include motor learning and rehabilitation of gait and balance using novel strategies, including rhythm-, music- and dance-based interventions. Dr. Patterson’s work is funded by the Canadian Institutes of Health Research and the Heart and Stroke Foundation of Canada.
Jessica Rayne is the Coordinator, Community Partnerships for Community Partnerships and Engagement office at University of Toronto Scarborough. Her role focuses on building and strengthening the relationships between University and Community and ensuring communities have access to the resources and supports deserved. Jessica has worked primarily in Education, Non-Profit, and Community to challenge structures and create more equitable and inclusive spaces for under-represented communities to thrive. Before joining the team Jessica co-led and co-created the Hip Hop Education program and the Black Futures program at Hart House which both centered the knowledge and voices of Black, Indigenous and racialized communities to establish spaces that challenged colonial ways of knowing and learning.
Jessica also worked at York University and Humber College supporting student success and access in postsecondary education. Jessica holds a Master’s degree in Sociology and diplomas in Business Management and Marketing. Outside of work you can find Jessica diving into her entrepreneurial endeavors, traveling, and exploring her creative energy through music, dance and food.
Robin Waley is the General Manager - Diversity, Equity, Inclusion & Belonging for the YMCA of Greater Toronto. Currently working in the charitable sector, Robin has ten years of experience supporting diversity, equity, inclusion and belonging initiatives within education at the University of Toronto and working as a consultant in anti-oppression. He uses a strategic mindset, a communities-based approach, and operational experience to drive the actions needed to create meaningful change.
Seika Boye is a scholar, writer, educator, and artist whose practices revolve around dance and movement. She is an Assistant Professor and Director of the Institute for Dance Studies at the Centre for Drama, Theatre and Performance Studies, University of Toronto.
Seika curated the archival exhibition It’s About Time: Dancing Black in Canada 1900–1970 (2018) and co-curated Into the Light: Eugenics and Education in Southern Ontario (2019). Her publications have appeared in numerous academic journals and magazines, and she is an Associate Editor for Canadian Theatre Research (2021). Seika is currently a co-investigator on Gatherings: archival and oral histories of performance (SSHRC Partnership Development Grant).
From 1995-2010 Seika performed and presented her choreography across Canada. She danced with Ballet Creole, Electric Company Theatre, Judith Marcuse Projects and many independent artists. Most recently, Seika has worked as a movement dramaturg with artists including Natasha Powell/Holla Jazz, Syreeta Hector, Mix Mix Dance Collective, Deanna Bowen, Heidi Struass/adelheid dance, taisha paggett, and Djanet Sears.
Seika is a sought-after speaker, instructor, and consultant in the performing arts sector. She was an Artist-in-Residence at the Art Gallery of Ontario (2018), Toronto District School Board’s African Heritage Educators’ Network Arts Honoree (2019) and a 2020 recipient of the Lieutenant Governor’s Heritage Trust Award (co-curator, Into the Light). She is the inaugural recipient of The Dance in the Public Sphere Award presented by the Dance Studies Association (2021), for her work on It’s About Time. Seika loves and works in Toronto with her husband and two sons.
Jose Miguel (Miggy) Esteban
Jose Miguel (Miggy) Esteban is a dance/movement artist and educator based in Tkaronto/Toronto. Miggy is currently a PhD student at the Department of Social Justice Education at the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education, University of Toronto, where his research is oriented through disability studies and dance/performance studies to reimagine educational praxis. Influenced by disability arts and culture, Black radical traditions, Indigenous storytelling, and queer performance, his dissertation project engages in embodied practices of improvised research-creation to re-interpret curriculum as a choreographic site for inspiring pedagogies of/through dance.
Kimia Karachi is a Persian-Canadian dancer, choreographer, actor and recent graduate of the University of Toronto. She is currently in her third year on the Festival of Dance executive board. She is heavily involved with Hart House Theatre and the Toronto dance community, both on stage and behind the scenes. With 20 years of dance experience, Kimia’s work focuses on using movement and the mover’s body to break down and reimagine perceptions of the female body as it relates to social justice and empowerment.
Ingrid Lui graduated from the University of Toronto in 2020. Throughout her undergraduate career, she was heavily involved with the U of T dance community, most notably in her executive roles with the Hart House U of T Festival of Dance (FoD) and the Only Human Dance Collective (OHDC), a student-run dance company that prides itself on being the longest-running dance group at U of T with a unique all-inclusive mandate. She served as the FoD Festival Coordinator from 2018 to 2020 (and remained a member of the Festival Executive until 2022) and was the co-Creative Director of OHDC from 2019 to 2022.
About the Institute for Dance Studies
The Institute for Dance Studies is a research community hosted within the Centre for Drama, Theatre, and Performance Studies at the University of Toronto. Through meetings, events, practice‑based research, and resource‑sharing, we are a platform of support for scholars, students, dance‑related professionals, and people who dance in ALL ways and aspects of life. It is our mandate to work to advocate for the value of dance beyond performance.