DanceWorks presents Kaha:wi Dance Theatre



DanceWorks proudly presents the highly acclaimed Kaha:wi Dance Theatre (KDT) in the Toronto premiere of Blood Tides, conceived and directed by KDT Artistic Director Santee Smith of Six Nations of the Grand River territory. Blood Tides delves into sacred space to retrieve women’s ancient knowing and rites of passage. Illuminated by elemental and ancestral forces, Blood Tides activates sacred alignments from cosmos to womb. Its imagery and energies span the wide range of what is woman: warrior, leader, mother, divine goddess, creator, huntress and thresholder of life and death. With an ensemble of four Indigenous women - Marina Acevedo (Mexico/Zapotec), Julianne Blackbird (Kahnyen’kehàka Nation /Mohawk Nation), Santee Smith (Kahnyen’kehàka Nation /Mohawk Nation), and Jahra ‘Rager’ Wasasala (Fijian/New Zealand), Blood Tides acknowledges the magnificence of woman in all of her phases and ages.


Blood Tides runs for 3 nights only – Thursday, February 14 through Saturday February 16 – at Harbourfront Centre’s Fleck Dance Theatre. Tickets available at the Box Office by phone at 416-973-4000 or online

Kaha:wi Dance Theatre

Kahawi Dance Theatre Image

About Kaha:wi Dance Theatre

Kaha:wi Dance Theatre (KDT) is an Onkwehon:we organization and one of Turtle Islands’ foremost performing arts companies, acclaimed nationally and around the globe for exquisitely produced, powerful, poetic and resonant performances. Founded by Six Nations based Artistic Director Santee Smith, Kaha:wi (Ga-HA-Wee) means “to carry” in Kahnyen’kehàka (Mohawk).


Exploring the intersection of Indigenous and new performance through resurgent process and practice, KDT’s works are interdisciplinary, multi-voiced, intergenerational, and inter-cultural. Drawing inspiration from research and collaboration, performances question, re-story and transform while adhering to Indigenous process, connection to land, story, and spirit of place.      



About Santee Smith

Santee Smith is from the Kahnyen’kehàka Nation, Turtle Clan, Six Nations of the Grand River, Haldimand Treaty territory. She is a multidisciplinary artist, award-winning producer, and Managing Artistic Director of Kaha:wi Dance Theatre which she founded in 2005 and has grown into an internationally renowned performing arts company. Exploring the intersection of Indigenous and new performance, Kaha:wi Dance Theatre’s works feature visually stunning, visceral, and thought provoking performance conceived and devised through Indigenous knowledge, process, and methodology.


Santee Smith trained at Canada’s National Ballet School, completed Physical Education and Psychology degrees from McMaster University, and an M.A. in Dance from York University. Her body of work includes 13 productions and over 12 short works. Her independent commissions include collaborations with National Arts Centre Orchestra, Fall for Dance North, Canadian Opera Company, North American Indigenous Games - Opening Ceremonies, Stratford Festival, National Film Board of Canada, and Yokohama Noh Theatre, among others. She is the recipient of numerous awards including the K.M. Hunter Award for Dance, Canada Council’s Victor Martyn Lynch-Staunton Award, Dora Mavor Moore Award for Outstanding Choreography for Susuriwka – willow bridge, and the 2017 REVEAL Indigenous Arts Award, among others.



Santee Smith Headshot

Santee Smith Dancworks Image


Interview with Santee

Blood Tides is a visual feast with imagery that spans the wide range of what is women: warrior, leader, mother, divine goddess, creator, thresholder of life and death, and huntress. Danceworks sat down with artistic director and dancer, Santee Smith to speak about her creative process and collaborating with international artists.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               




WIN a Pair of tickets to DanceWorks presentation of Kaha:wi Dance Theatre's Blood Tides on Saturday, February 16 at 8pm at the Fleck Dance Theatre, including post show reception with wine, finger foods and silent auction.


Blood Tides Video

DanceWorks Annual Fabulous (and Affordable) Silent Auction

Silent Auction Image DanceWorks

Join us on February 16 after the performance for our silent auction and reception. Your ticket price includes:

✪ a performance of Blood Tides by Kaha:wi Dance Theatre


✪ a glass of wine and glorious munchies by Sublime Catering such as Roasted Salmon Skewers with Maple Glaze, Cod Cakes with Grilled Corn Relish, Barley, Squash and Sage Stew in Bread Cups, Bison Meatballs with Cranberry Chutney, and Braised Mushroom and Wild Rice Medley on Bannock Toasts


✪ DanceWorks' much anticipated Silent Auction with items including up-market dining in Toronto's Distillery District, whiskey and wine, tickets to events, spa and boutique indulgences and much more! 


Tickets to the show, reception, and auction available at the Box Office by phone at 416-973-4000 or online.

DanceWorks Upcoming Shows

Jaberi- Danceworks


No Woman’s Land is an evocative new work that explores real stories of women in refugee camps. Conceived and directed by Roshanak Jaberi and created with a powerhouse artistic team and an ensemble of six performers, this interdisciplinary production integrates dance, theatre and multi-media – taking audiences on a journey that reveals the plight and resistance of refugee women. The project has been developed in collaboration with the Institute for Research and Development on Inclusion and Society (IRIS) and is based on research conducted by Doris Rajan and Dr. Shahrzad Mojab. 



Location: Harbourfront Centre Theatre + grounds

Date: March 14 - 16, 2019


Adelheid Image- Danceworks


A co-presentation with Harbourfront Centre, adelheid's site-specific LOT X transports seven performers and audiences through several locations around Toronto’s Harbourfront Centre, challenging ideas of intimacy, holding a magnifying glass to where we are, the land we are standing on, and the people we stand with. Perspective is created spatially, but also through the opportunity for audiences to decide how they engage with the experience. They move beyond the confines of the theatre, on different paths and return again to a changed space having built a history of their own through the work, one that offers a greater sense of ownership of where they are, and how they connect with the performers.    


Location: Harbourfront Centre Theatre + grounds

Date: May 29 - June 02, 2019



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