A dance performance by Heirloom left audience members feeling inspired Friday afternoon.
Co-produced by Arts Orillia and Fall for Dance North, the outdoor performance at the Leacock Museum featured dancing, juggling and original music performed by a quartet.
Kate Hilliard, artistic director with Arts Orillia, says the Sunshine City was “very lucky” to host Heirloom.
“We are one of about three or four communities in Ontario to host a performance that we bring together in partnership with (Fall for) Dance North,” she said, noting the musicians came to the event from the Royal Conservatory of Music and performers presented choreography by Zack Martel and Santiago Rivera.
Arts Orillia has changed its mandate over the past year to be an organization that presents cultural opportunities to the community, Hilliard says.
“We’ve started to develop this reputation for being an artistic organization,” she said. “We are supportive of both performances and the making of performances.”
She says it’s important for Arts Orillia to connect with young people, which is where the inspiration for Friday’s event came from.
“Fall for Dance North approached us about being a presenter for this performance,” she explained. “We thought it would be an excellent opportunity for young people.”
About 110 students from Regent Park Public School attended the event.
“I’m hoping that they are interested in what they see,” Hilliard said. “I hope they think about it after the fact.”
Hilliard wants students to take in what they saw from the performance, what they heard, and how it made them feel.
“That’s the process I hope they will engage in,” she said. “It’s the beginning of what every audience member that is an appreciator of art has to do.”
She says bringing performances of the calibre of Heirloom to Orillia will “inspire” the next generation of artists and art appreciators.
“Arts Orillia has a mandate to broaden the understanding of what performance can be,” she said. “We will bring things here that have never been seen before.”
Arts Orillia has a number of community workshops, events, and performances scheduled through June 2023. More information can be found here.