Weather A dance performance by Anandam Dancetheatre

Curated by Christine Shaw

Friday October 30, 2015
2 – 4pm


FREE, all welcome

The performance will start in the Blackwood Gallery (Kaneff Centre) at 2pm and move to various sites on the UTM campus. Spectator peregrination is required.

Download the musical score for the performance to your mobile device from


Presented in the context of the exhibition The pen moves across the earth: it no longer knows what will happen, and the hand that holds it has disappeared on view at the Blackwood Gallery from September 16 - November 29, 2015.

Photo: Kalapana by Eamon Mac Mahon


Weather explores the current global ecological crisis and its embodied impact through site-specific choreography and sonic experiences that will engage with the natural landscape and built environment of the University of Toronto Mississauga’s campus. Each solo vignette plays with the idea of instability, of teetering on the brink of disaster. Spectator peregrination through the campus is required.


Endangered Species examines the body as a container of historical processes at their tipping point. A de-stabilized structure of raw exposed nerve endings firing endlessly and out of order. A place where immense forces of history collapse into our present reality and manifest in the ecology of the body.

Water offers the body as a vessel of ancestral and landscape memory.  The accumulation of our fluids, our orgasms, our births, our rituals, our tears.  The pathways of the colonizers, the natural resources depleted by our capitalist economies.  The potential for buoyancy and drowning.  Shape shifting oceans and glaciers moving across our landscapes.  

Shrinking Habitats explores encroachment and enclosure. The howl of a land/body urbanized, colonized, liquefying, drying and depleting. The scars of industry and the imbalanced relationships between our bodies, economies, and landscapes in a slow burn meltdown.  

Wind offers a time lapse of the body as landscape through the continual process of erosion.  The body becomes a divining weather vane, the trade winds of the colonial project, a future antennae transmitting and receiving signals through the air. The precarious balance of all of the converging forces of history and future possibilities existing in a simultaneous space of moving forward and back in time. The forces of accumulation and dissolution. 

Choreography: Brandy Leary, in collaboration with the performers

Performers: Amy Hampton, Louis Laberge-Côté, Michael Caldwell, and Ryan Lee


The weather becomes a flickering social prosody. As it abstracts into rhythm it becomes commodified, universal. It's real. It's mythic. It's wild. It's a vernacular. It's didactic. It's boredom. It's ceaseless. It's a delusional space.

This weather's the wild fantasy. It seizes us. Together our faces tilt upwards. […] If each forecast is a fiction I prefer to add to that fiction alternate delusions—a delusionary politics that describes current conditions as it poses futurities.

- Lisa Robertson, "The Weather: A Report on Sincerity"


The profound ecological changes currently underway have made it crucial to think with geological time scales and to link seemingly disparate events across the globe, namely colonialism, unregulated capitalism, and globalization. The weather emerges as a strange figure of a kind of metaphysical instability. It’s as if the market collapse and the dismantling of the fortress of the state as absolute shelter has amplified a sense of vulnerability to the elements to a point where the earth’s atmosphere responds in kind. Weather produces a kind of amplification of these details in a manner that indexes the variegated rhythms of non-human and human matter.

Weather looks to the human body as a conductor for explicitly engaging with the physical, political, and chemical composition of the Earth. The performance presents issues that are often rendered as ‘dry science’ in a way that enables emotional responses and encourages us to re-envisage future and past relations between earthly volatility and bodily vulnerability. Weather makes visible the differential impacts – past, present, and future – that have come to shape the relationships among human and non-human actants, living in an era of extreme hydrocarbon extraction, extreme weather events, and extreme economic disparity. Each site-specific solo vignette plays on the idea of instability, of teetering on the brink of disaster.


- Christine Shaw, Director/Curator of the Blackwood Gallery

Artists' Biograhies

About Anandam Dancetheatre

Anandam creates live performances that explore the body as a curious and shifting filter for diverse viewpoints and practices. Performances are created from dissonant sources in often alternative spaces or re-visioned traditional ones, collaboration among artists is post-disciplinary, and the aesthetic interest is polycultural. Anandam develops unique partnerships and collaborations both locally and internationally to create large-scale works of public art, small intimate performances in alternative venues, shared programs, and festival activity. 

Recent projects include Glaciology (Nuit Blanche, 2015), Weather (Bata Shoe Museum, 2015), Cascade (cited by Kathleen Smith at NOW Magazine as one of the top 5 dance shows of 2014), Seismology (Collective Space, 2014), and Divergent Dances for Windows and Walls (Bata Shoe Museum, 2012). Previously, the company has shared its repertoire with audiences in Ottawa, Kolkata, Cologne, Cape Town, Stolezenhagen, Montreal, New York, New Delhi, and Winnipeg.


About Brandy Leary (Artistic Director/Choreographer)

Brandy Leary creates contemporary performances through the body. She holds a BA Honours in Theatre with a specialization in Direction and Asian Theatre from York University's Theatre Program.

Brandy has lived between Canada and India for the past 17 years training, collaborating, and creating in the traditional Indian performing languages of Seraikella and Mayurbhanj Chhau (dance), Kalarippayattu (martial art) and Rope Mallakhamb (aerial rope).

In addition to founding and leading Anandam Dancetheatre, Brandy is a Founder and Co-Director of Collective Space (an alternative performance and rehearsal venue in Toronto’s west end) and a Founder and Co-Artistic Director of CCAFT (Contemporary Circus Arts Festival of Toronto).

Brandy is a triple Shastri Indo Canadian Fellow, a Chalmers Professional Development Awardee, a visiting artist at the MFA program, Shiv Nadar University (India), has been shortlisted for the KM Hunter Award in Dance (2009 and 2011), and is a Multi-Disciplinary Dance Artist Nominee (2013) for the Soulpepper Dance Awards.

Her work has been supported by the Canada Council for the Arts, Hal Jackman Foundation, CreatiVenture Collective, Bata Shoe Museum, Summerworks, Rhubarb Festival, Fringe NYC, City Leaks Urban Arts, Infecting the City Public Arts Festival, Theatre Passe Muraille, Dance Made In/Fait au Canada Festival, CCAFT, Circus NOW, Metcalf Foundation, Ontario Arts Council, Toronto Arts Foundation, Toronto Arts Council, and Nuit Blanche. 



Performance Photos
Performance Video


Videographer: Michael Dopsa


Weather is a performance by Anandam Dancetheatre, presented by the Blackwood Gallery. Originally created with support from the Toronto Arts Council, the Metcalf Foundation, the CreatiVenture, and the Bata Shoe Museum.

The Blackwood Gallery is generously supported by the Canada Council for the Arts and the Ontario Arts Council.