The collective QuébéAsia and the Festival of Accès Asie have joined to bring the public an exceptional celebration of the arts with the 4th edition of Quebeasia Dance Performance Series.

edition 2016
May 13 — 5:00pm
May 14 — 6:00pm
May 15 — 3:30pm
Salle Custeau - Le Gesù


The 4th edition of the Quebeasia Dance Performance Series welcomes the public for cocktails at Theatre Gesu on Friday May 13th from 5:00 to 7:00 pm. Here the public has the opportunity to meet and chat with the artists. The evening includes a series of interactive activities, which showcase the diversity of Asian dance and of the arts at the festival. There will also be a reading from the book Afghan et musulman. Le Québec m’a conquis by Zabi Enâyat-Zâda. Cowritten with Carolyne Jannard the book tells the intimate story of Zabi’ struggle to overcome cultural differences and to reconcile his two realities. 

On Saturday, May 14th at 6:00 pm, Manijeh Ali presents her latest work Retrospective at Studio 303. Manijeh maps her complex identity through a retrospective of her artistic work over almost two decades. Tanveer Alam follows with Khoj, which, from breathing movements to the somatic interpretation of words and sounds, explores the meaning of dance for his life. 

At 8:00 pm on Saturday, Julio Hong and his dancers present Cervantes, a piece that transfigures the sense of loss and nostalgia into beauty. The choreographer of Chinese, Haitian, Spanish and Cuban origins explores the subject of expatriation through the story of Ignacio Cervantes, a man who has been forced to quit his homeland Cuba. 

On Sunday, May 15th at 3:00 pm, love in all its forms is honoured by Taala and Ishwari and by Création Danse Atmana, under the direction of Manijeh Ali. Passionate, sensual, devoted, spiritual, adventurous or troubled, love will be celebrated through the multiple colors of Indian dance. 

At 5 pm on Sunday, the dancer Nasim Lootij portrays the socio-political history of Iran, her birthplace, with an introspective piece entitled Moi-Me-Man. The evening closes with an encounter between contemporary composition and meditation, guided by musician Pooria Pournazeri, choreographer Sarah Dell’Ava and dancer Sachiko Sumi. Together they will present Orir, the second creation of a series inspired by the word «oriri», whose Latin root means «origin».



Manijeh Ali

Originally from Afghanistan, Manijeh Ali has developed extensive experience in classical Indian dance forms (Bharata Natyam, Karanaha, Kathak, Mohiniattam), and traditional West African dance. For the last fifteen years, her works have reflected stories about human experiences transcending cultural differences, Intangible (2014), Atman (2012), Char (2010) and Thandhavum (2009), to name just a few. Along with being a founding member of Dance Silken, Manijeh Ali also serves as artistic director of the collective QuébéAsia. 


©Manijeh Ali

Tanveer Alam

Captivated by the performing arts, Tanveer Alam started training in Kathak ata very young age. Currently, he is refining this performance art with Sandhya Desai, a former student of the Kathak guru, Padmabhushan Kumudini Lakhia. Tanveer Alam has also been training in classical ballet and contemporary dance with dance masters Marie-Josée Hardy and Chantale Desgroseilliers. Since 2009, he has toured all across Canada. He has performed in various events, including QuébéAsia, the Festival des Traditions du Monde de Sherbrooke and the Shenkman Arts Centre of Ottawa.

©Lisa Hatz

Julio Hong

Born in Havana, of Chinese origin, Julio Hong is a master of Latin American styles, Cuban popular and folkloric dance forms. After moving to Montreal and working with Marie Chouinard, Rubberband Dance Group, and Cirque du Soleil, Julio Hong founded the Afro Cuban Association of Montreal and Le groupe herencias. He teaches and choreographs his own works, fusing contemporary movement with ballet and folkloric dance. In his work, Julio Hong is constantly pushing the limits of identity and questioning how we fit within our cultural frameworks without losing our roots.


© Maryline Ulysse

Création danse Atmana

Directed by Manijeh Ali, the troupe Création Danse Atmana praises beauty, sensuality, joy and strength through different Indian dance styles, in movement somewhere between classical and Bollywood dance. The dancers Martine Clément, Julie Mondor, France Ouellette and Catherine Venne explored several dance styles before concentrating on Indian dance.


©Maryse Gauthier

Taala et Ishwari

Célia Vankeisbelck (Taala) and Saiswari Virahsammy, two Bharata Natyam dancers, collaborate and develop their own Indian fusion dance style, by combining classical and modern forms. Their choreographies explore a wide array of movements andrhythms. Their performances, presented last summer for the first time at the Montreal Festival Orientalys, were very warmly received by the public.

©Elise Cayzac

Nasim Lootij

A multifaceted artist, Nasim Lootij first trained in folkloric Iranian dance during the 2000s. In France, she devoted herself to contemporary dance, graduating from the Université Paris 8 and the Conservatoire Jean Wiener in Bobigny. She has rehearsed at the experimental theatre of Iran, and also collaborated with alternative companies such as the multidisciplinary Nawel Oulad. Odile Duboc, Christine Gérard and Alban Richards are among the choreographers with whom she has been privileged to work.


Sarah Dell’Ava

A choreographer, performer and instructor, Sarah Dell’Ava has developed a distinctive multidisciplinary career in dance, drawing, and singing. In her choreographies, she focuses on the physical and symbolic dimensions of the body. Through the folds of the skin and the heart, dance questions the flesh, its memories and impulses. In her art residencies, cultural mediation activities and workshops, Sarah creates an intimate dialogue with dancers of all ages and level of experience.


©Orion Szydel

Pooria Pournazeri

Pooria Pournazeri began playing the tanbur (a lute of Kurdish origin) at the age of six. He later trained with his uncle, Keykhosrow Pournazeri, a master of Sufi music, from whom he learned traditional Persian and Kurdish repertoires. He composed his first musical pieces at the age of fourteen. After a successful career in groups such as Shams in Iran, he launched his first solo album in 2011 which was praised by Songlines magazine as the Best Album of October in Europe. Since arriving in Montreal, he has composed for the Tabassian brothers’ ensemble, Constantinople, and is currently working on his fourth musical piece.


Sachiko Sumi

Born in Japan, and residing in Montreal since 2005, Sachiko Sumi is notably recognized for the works she has performed throughout Quebec. She holds a BA in Visual and Media Arts from the Université du Québec à Montréal, and is currently pursuing a MA in Studio Arts in Fibers and Material Practices at Concordia University. Sachiko Sumi joined the project, Bouillon de poulet pour l’art, to form a vocal and choreographic duo with Karine Bouchard. This project draws from many different fields of the arts. Since 2013, she has been working with Sarah Dell’Ava in the spectacle “Oriri.”


©Orion Szydel

Zabi Enâyat-Zâda

Zabi Enâyat-Zâda, born in Kabul, Afghanistan, was 17 years old when the war between the Russians and Mujahideen began. Since arriving in Quebec, he has learned French and pursued his undergraduate studies. The privilege of being Afghan and Quebecois has allowed him to see the world from two different viewpoints, which he attempts to harmonize through his writing. He draws on the deep richness of ‘60s and ‘70s Afghan culture, and the spiritual openness of Montrealers. Both are integrally fused in his understanding of the world he lives in and writes about.

Carolyne Jannard

Carolyne Jannard was born in Montreal. Her professional career plans the diverse fields of the arts, education and human resource management. The common thread that brings her work in these areas together is her search for a deeper understanding of herself and others, and is deeply interested in the psychic mechanisms that govern each human being. She is a relationship therapist, and writes a blog about interpersonal relationships and self- awareness.


Manijeh Ali – Choreographer

Tanveer Alam – Choreographer

Julio Hong – Choreographer

Création danse Atmana – Dance troupe 

Taala et Ishwari – Choreographers

Nasim Lootij – Choreographer

Sarah Dell’Ava – Choreographer

Pooria Pournazeri – Musician

Sachiko Sumi – Dancer and multidisciplinary artist

Zabi Enâyat-Zâda – Author

Carolyne Jannard – Author

edition 2016
May 13 — 5:00pm
May 14 — 6:00pm
May 15 — 3:30pm
Salle Custeau - Le Gesù