Ascension | 2022
December 15 – 17, 2022 | 7:00 PM
Studio T – SFU Goldcorp Centre for the Arts, 149 W. Hastings St., Vancouver
Tickets: Students (with valid Student ID) / Underemployed $5 | Seniors + SFU Alumni / Faculty / Staff $10 | General $15
Now on its 11th year, Ascension is an interdisciplinary production produced and performed by undergraduate students of the Dance, Music & Sound, and Theater Production & Design programs at SFU’s School for the Contemporary Arts.
Ascension asks students to collaborate across disciplines in the SCA to generate original works outside of designated class times, serveing as both a platform to promote and extend the interdisciplinary nature of the SCA, while also providing an opportunity for students to gain hands-on experience that they can take with them past graduation.
Artistic Director & Dance Area Representative: Jullianna Oke
Technical Director & Production and Design Area Representative: Jack Chipman
Assistant Director & Music Area Representative: Stella Da Yun Song
Anna Wang-Albini, Brooklyn Fowler, Greer Harper, Jessica McKeown, Kaitlyn La Vigne, Krystal Tsai, Natalia Martineau, and Natasha Dennison.
COMPOSERS & MUSICIANS
Artemis Cheung, Chaucer Gilson, Conor Day, Jackson Adrian, Leif Hatzi-Blaak, Pascal Spadinger-Fengler, and Toni-Leah C. Yake.
Lighting Design: Gabriella Hu, Jack Chipman, Jingyi (Chloe) Zhang, Joy-Zhengyi Wu, Lulan (Nicole) Huang, Yifan (Yvonne) Liang, and Zuzanna Liniewski.
Projection Design: Colleen Bayati and Isabelle Romas
Stage Managers: Joy-Zhengyi Wu and Bernice Paet
Assistant Stage Managers: Evelyn Couldrey and Polina Olshevska
Assistant Technical Director: Theo Ewanchook
Sound Programmer: Kezi Jacob
Video Programmer: Jack Chipman
Lighting Operator: Maddy Woodley
Sound Operator: Jessica Kwon
Dresser: Polina Olshevska
Graphic Designer: Tiffany Au
Photography: Mikela Vuorensivu
Trailer Cinematographer and Editor: Colleen Bayati
Abby Blanchard, Anna Wang-Albini, Avery Ebenal, Beatrice Keller, Brooklyn Fowler, Claire Duhamel, Clara Xinlei Xu, Desiree Keresztes James, Elyza Samson, Emma Tweedie, Gabriela Galindo, Jessica McKeown, Kaitlyn La Vigne, Krystal Tsai, Lia Sieben, Lillian Wallman, Myah McCarthy, Natalia Martineau, Olivia Johnson, Quinn Muylaert, Sonja Kwantes, Sydney Bluck, and Yen Chi (Emily) Lee
Abby Blanchard (She/Her) - Dancer
Abby Blanchard, originally from Prince Albert, Saskatchewan in Treaty 6 territory, is in her third year of the SFU Contemporary Arts dance program. She is passionate about making the most of this opportunity to absorb the techniques offered by each of her teachers in hopes that the curiosity she brings to the work will help her develop her individuality as a dancer. Abby has loved Ascension's interdisciplinary framework and she is extremely grateful to have worked with such a talented team of artists.
Anna Wang-Albini (She/They) - Choreographer & Dancer
Anna Wang-Albini (she/they) is an emerging artist who lives and plays on the traditional, unceded lands of the Musqueam, Squamish and Tsleil-Waututh Nations. Anna is extremely fortunate to have performed with artists and companies including Tin Gamboa and Bard on the Beach, and Alberta Dance Theatre. They are looking to expand their knowledge of dance and choreography and is exploring multiple avenues of interest and research within the realm of dance performance.
Artemis Cheung (He/Him) - Musician
Born in Hong Kong and based in Vancouver, Artemis Cheung is a first-year student at SFU studying Music & Sound. You’ll usually hear him playing metal on his guitar or bass, and it’s no exception in Ascension ’22. Find him on streaming services. ;)
Avery Ebenal (He/Him) - Dancer
Avery Ebenal was born and raised in Davidson, Saskatchewan on the traditional lands of Treaty 4 signed by the Cree and Saulteaux nations, as well as Treaty 6 signed by the Cree, Assiniboine and Ojibwe nations. Avery is a third year student at Simon Fraser University, who is currently taking a double major in International Studies and Dance. He is interested in movement that explores contrast, authenticity and testing the limit of one's ability mentally, creatively and physically. His interest also includes blending movement styles together.
Beatrice Keller (She/Her) - Dancer
Bea Keller (she/her) is a third year student at Simon Fraser University’s dance program! She resides on the traditional land of the Coast Salish peoples–Sḵwx̱wú7mesh (Squamish), Stó:lō and Səl̓ílwətaʔ/Selilwitulh (Tsleil-Waututh) and xʷməθkʷəy̓əm (Musqueam) Nations, commonly known as Vancouver, BC. It is her second year performing in Ascension and she is so excited!
Bernice Paet (She/Her) - Stage Manager
Bernice Paet (she/her) is an interdisciplinary artist interested in portraying and exploring the complex web of human relations in her performance, designs, and installation works. Growing up on the unceded territories of the Coast Salish peoples of the xʷməθkwəy̓ əm (Musqueam), Skwxwú7mesh (Squamish) and Səl̓ílwətaɬ (Tsleil-Waututh) Nations, Bernice has always been passionate in different areas of fine arts and is now a fourth-year student majoring in Theatre Production & Design at Simon Fraser University. There, she has stage managed for Ascension 2021, LIVE ACTS Vol.1 and Refraction, and is delighted to be stage managing again for Ascension!
Brooklyn Fowler (She/Her) - Choreographer & Dancer
Brooklyn Fowler (she/her) was born and raised in Lethbridge, Alberta on the traditional lands of the Ktunaxa, Michif Piyii (Metis), Niitsítpiis-stahkoii (Blackfoot), Očhéthi Šakówin, and Tsuu T’ina. Brooklyn is a fourth year dance major, an emerging dance artist, and aspiring choreographer who is interested in expanding her choreographic process and learning how to navigate within the scope of the professional dance world.
Chaucer Gilson (He/Him) - Composer
Chaucer Gilson is an electroacoustic composer and sound artist based out of Vancouver, BC. His current compositional practice spans an extensive look into generative music applied in interactive contexts, which culminated in SQUARES, an installation featured in the SCA’s Fall 2022 Music + Sound Festival. Chaucer is honored to have participated as a composer in Ascension 2022 and hopes everyone enjoys the show!
Claire Duhamel (She/Her) - Dancer
Claire Duhamel is a 2nd year Contemporary Dance Major at SFU School of Contemporary Arts. She is grateful to have the opportunity to continue exploration of movement and deepen her connection to the Arts through dance. She is looking forward to performing at Ascension 2022. Claire is Métis and raised on unceded traditional territories of the Coast Salish peoples of the xʷməθkwəy̓əm (Musqueam), Skwxwú7mesh (Squamish), and Səl̓ílwətaɬ (Tsleil-Waututh) Nations.
Clara Xinlei Xu (She/Her) - Dancer
Clara Xu is a second-year dance major at SFU's School of the Contemporary Arts located on the unceded and traditional territories of the Musqueam, Squamish, and Tsleil-Waututh Nations. As an emerging interdisciplinary artist most interested in dance and music, she explores tone colour, cyclical nature and repetition, and small gestures. She hopes to further explore the uses of technology within choreography and composition.
Colleen Bayati (She/her) - Projection Designer & Trailer Cinematographer and Editor
As a studying dramaturg and filmmaker, Colleen is enamoured by possibility in art and the heart-warming narrative. Continuing to expand her skill set in further studies, she aspires to create work that touches hearts everywhere.
Conor Day (He/Him) - Composer
Conor is a composer in his third year at SFU. His work focuses on noise, sample manipulation, and the intersection of sonic environments with composition.
Desiree Keresztes James (She/They) - Dancer
Desiree Keresztes James was born and raised on the Indigenous homelands of the Mississaugas of the Credit First Nation which is part of the Anishinaabe First Nation, now known as Oakville, Ontario. She is currently focusing on indulging her explorations of the choreographic process while utilizing different qualities of movement within her technical practice. Desiree would like to continue her work within this art form to pursue a path that allows her to strengthen and adapt her technical and choreographic practices.
Elyza Samson (She/Her) - Dancer
Elyza Samson was born and raised on the traditional Indigenous territory of the Qayqayt First Nations, in the place now commonly known as New Westminster. Elyza is a 4th year Dance Major who transferred from Arts Umbrella Dance Company as a Dance Diploma Graduate. Upon completion of the SFU dance program, Elyza will pursue a career in performance and continue deepening in her artistic practice.
Emma Tweedie (She/Her) - Dancer
Emma Tweedie is an emerging Vancouver-based artist on the traditional territories of the Musqueam, Squamish, and Tsleil-Waututh Nations. By immersing herself in movement languages belonging to different communities, Emma continues to cultivate her own artistic identity as she moves forward with her dance career.
Evelyn Couldrey (She/Her) - Assistant Stage Manager
Evelyn is a first year student from Alberta looking forward to learning more about arts and theatre with other students.
Gabriela Galindo (She/Her) - Dancer
Born and raised in Tampico, Tamaulipas, Mexico, Gabriela Galindo is a practicing dance artist in the School for the Contemporary Arts, SFU on the unceded traditional territories of the Musqueam, Squamish, and Tsleil-Waututh Nations. Gabriela aspires to continue exploring and experimenting with interdisciplinary collaborations in the artistic industry to create a deeper understanding of 'the aching body stuffed with emotions as a living archive continually in transformation.'
Gabriella Hu (She/Her) - Lighting Designer
Gabriella (Zhaoxuan) Hu is a 4th year undergraduate student who majors in Theatre Production & Design with more focus on stage management and lighting design. She comes from China and shares the mixed and grey zone as an artist. She has stood on the stage from dancing to producing, being strong and passionate for the past five years. She believes that art has no regions and boundaries, and the combination of all art forms is desirable.
Greer Harper (She/Her) - Choreographer
Greer is a 3rd year student in the dance program at Simon Fraser University, located on the unceded lands of the Musqueam, Squamish and Tsleil-Waututh Nations. She has an interest in various choreographic processes and has been involved in shows with the school for the past 3 years. Recently she has been interested in working with smaller groups of dancers to create lighthearted yet emotional works.
Isabelle Romas (She/Her) - Projection Designer
Isabelle grew up on Haida Gwaii in the Village of Daajing Giids off the coast of B.C. She is an undergraduate student in Theatre Production & Design at SFU and aspires to continue working in the arts post graduation.
Jack Chipman (He/Him) - Technical Director & Lighting Designer & Video Programmer
Jack is a Vancouver based projection designer and technologist. His work integrates physical elements into digital spaces through the use of cameras, digital props, and image filtering. He is excited by the merging of different mediums to create an immersive experience. Jack’s past credits include Szepty/Whispers (Rumble Theatre), Romeo and Juliet (Vancouver Symphony Orchestra), Dance Craft (Joe Ink), and Ghost Forest (Simon Fraser University). jchipman.com
Jackson Adrian (Any) - Composer
Jack is a sound artist, multimedia author, and amateur philosopher currently living on the unceded and stolen land of the Sto:lo Kwikwetlem people. Primarily working in experimental electronic music, Jack is engaged in an ongoing practice of exploring digital media through the lens of her christian spiritualism. His aesthetic influences range widely from online collections of hiphop and dance music to deep internet grottoes of texture and noise.
Jessica Kwon (She/Her) - Sound Operator
Jessica Kwon is a Korean Canadian born and raised in Vancouver Canada. She is a first year majoring in Theatre Production & Design at the SCA. Jessica has always had interest and also enjoyed drama and theatre in highschool and decided to continue her education in theatre at SFU.
Jessica McKeown (She/They) - Choreographer & Dancer
Jessica McKeown was born on the traditional territories of the Ligwiłda'xw people: the We Wai Kai, Wei Wai Kum and Kwiakah First Nations, also known as Campbell River. Jessica looks forward to graduating this Winter from Simon Fraser University with her BFA in dance. They are excited to continue exploring and developing their artistic practice, as well as have the opportunity to expand their knowledge in business administration.
Jingyi (Chloe) Zhang (She/Her) - Lighting Designer
Jingyi (Chloe) Zhang is a 4th year SFU undergraduate Theatre production & Design student who was born and raised in Hubei, China. Chloe is currently exploring possibilities in theatre such as management, lighting design and stage design. She hopes to combine her passion for life and interest in dance to create a fun, aesthetic and passionate stage.
Joy-Zhengyi Wu (She/Her) - Stage Manager & Lighting designer
Zhengyi Wu (Joy), a SFU student major in Theatre Production & Design, was born and raised in Changsha, which is a city in Hunan province in China. Joy is working hard to improve her ability and knowledge in lighting and stage management, she is also doing some research in voice and emotional expression. In the future, she wants to be part of the team that makes a really good show that's known around the world.
Jullianna Oke (She/Her) - Artistic Director & Dance Area Representative
Jullianna is an emerging artist based in so-called Vancouver on the traditional, unceded lands of the Musqueam, Squamish and Tsleil-Waututh Nations. As she finishes her BFA Honors in Dance from Simon Fraser University, her interests lie in the passage of information and non-verbal communication expressed from one body to another through movement, sound, and media.
Kaitlyn La Vigne (She/Her) - Choreographer & Dancer
Kaitlyn La Vigne was born in Vancouver and raised in Surrey, British Columbia, on the traditional territories of the Semiahmoo, Katzie, Kwikwetlem, Kwantlen, Qayqayt and Tsawwassen First Nations. Kaitlyn continues to explore and find curiosity in her own movement practice and choreographic work as she moves through SFU’s dance program. Kaitlyn aspires to take her work and appreciation for movement into more therapeutic practices within her community.
Kezi Jacob (She/Her) - Sound Programmer
Kezi Jacob is a Theatre Production & Design student at SFU. Raised by artists in Kingston, Ontario, she has been involved in the art world since childhood. Kezi considers herself a “backstage artist” and intends to continue working to produce theatre, music and visual art events.
Krystal Tsai (She/Her) - Choreographer & Dancer
Krystal Tsai is a Vancouver-based emerging artist born and raised in Kaohsiung, Taiwan. She places a strong interest in Gaga technique, contact improvisation and conceptual dance work. She is hoping to contribute her movement language to the community in the near future.
Leif Hatzi-Blaak (He/Him) - Musician
Leif is a SFU student majoring in music composition. He was born in Athens, Greece, and moved to the unceded territories of the xʷməθkʷəy̓əm (Musqueam), Sḵwx̱wú7mesh (Squamish), and Sel̓íl̓witulh (Tsleil-Waututh) Nations, otherwise known as Vancouver, British Columbia. Leif is interested in composing for the piano and further testing the boundaries of music as a means of personal expression. He aspires to follow his passion in creating music for film and dance, and wants to collaborate with various musicians and artists.
Lia Sieben (She/Her) - Dancer
Lia Sieben, originally from Macklin, Saskatchewan, Treaty 6 territory, is currently an undergraduate at Simon Fraser University's Dance Program. Excited to continue to explore the realms of interdisciplinary work, choreography, and perfomance, she is very grateful to be a part of Ascension 2022, as it is an opportunity to work with other artists.
Lillian Wallman (She/Her) - Dancer
Lillian Wallman grew up in Port Alberni, which lies within the traditional territories of the Hupacasath and Tseshaht First Nations. She is a proud Metis artist and student who now gratefully practices and begins her professional career on the land of the Musqueam, Squamish, and Tseil-waututh First Nations.
Lulan (Nicole) Huang (She/Her) - Lighting Designer
Lulan (Nicole) Huang, graduated from SFU majoring in Theatre Production & Design. She is currently in Vancouver, the unceded traditional territories of the Coast Salish peoples of the xʷməθkwəy̓əm (Musqueam), Skwxwú7mesh (Squamish), and Səl̓ílwətaɬ (Tsleil-Waututh) Nations, where she started her exposure to art. With a passion for theatre, she is still learning and experimenting in the exploration of the impact of light and color on emotions to enrich herself among more professions.
Maddy Woodley (She/Her) - Lighting Operator
Maddy Woodley is currently in her first year in SFU's Theatre Production & Design program. For the past four years, Maddy has practiced as a Stage Manager in her highschool productions. Now, she is incredibly grateful to have the oppurtunity to delve into lighting on this show with all these talented people.
Mikela Vuorensivu (She/Her) - Photography
Mikela is an SFU Dance graduate and is honoured to photograph this year's Ascension. Alongside her education, she continues to explore her love for dancing, choreographing and capturing dancers and people on camera throughout the lower mainland, on the unceded territories of the xʷməθkʷəy̓əm (Musqueam), Sḵwx̱wú7mesh (Squamish), and səlilwətaɬ (Tsleil-Waututh) Nations.
Myah McCarthy (She/Her) - Dancer
Myah McCarthy is an artist residing on the stolen ancestral territories of the xʷməθkʷəy̓əm (Musqueam), Sḵwx̱wú7mesh (Squamish), and səlilwətaɬ (Tsleil-Waututh) Nations, more commonly known as Vancouver, British Columbia. Before attending SFU, Myah danced with Lamondance in North Vancouver. Myah is interested in approaching movement with presence and authenticity, while acknowledging the space in which she is located.
Natalia Martineau (She/Her) - Choreographer & Dancer
Natalia Martineau is an emerging dance artist born and raised in Canmore, on the Indigenous homelands of the Stoney Nakoda, Tsuut’ina First Nation, and the Blackfoot Confederacy in the Treaty 7 region of southern Alberta. Pursuing her BFA in contemporary dance at Simon Fraser University’s School for the Contemporary Arts, Natalia is in the process of expanding the sensory and physical bounds of her dance practice. Interested in how thoughts, feelings, texts, sounds, and images can be converted into dance, Natalia hopes to investigate how the body can reveal inarticulable truths about identity.
Natasha Dennison (She/They) - Choreographer
Natasha Dennison is an emerging interdisciplinary artist from the traditional territory of the Anishnabek, Huron-Wendat, Haudenosaunee, Oneida and Haudenosaunee people, also known as North Augusta, Ontario. She is interested in working with a sense of camp, as well as exploring the facets of emotional and physical ferocity. In the near future, Natasha hopes to experiment with how textiles, colour, and her own visual art can intersect and influence her work.
Olivia Johnson (She/Her) - Dancer
Olivia Johnson is a third-year student born on the traditional meeting grounds and homelands of the Cree, Saulteaux, Niisitapi (Blackfoot), Métis, Dene, and Nakota Sioux, in the place now commonly known as Edmonton. She is currently working on expanding her dance practice by immersing herself in various movement techniques. In the future, she hopes to continue performing and learning with embodied curiosity.
Polina Olshevska (She/Her) - Assistant Stage Manager & Dresser
Born and raised in the Treaty 7 region of Alberta, Polina Olshevska is a fourth-year contemporary dance major. Born into a family of dancers, Polina’s passion for dance stems from watching her mom perform, create, and teach Ukrainian dance. Most recently she performed with Bard on the Beach: A Midsummer Night's Dream and the SFU rep show, Refraction. She is passionate about Stage and Production management and is thrilled to be a part of the team as an ASM. Polina performed in Ascension in 2019 and 2021.
Quinn Muylaert (She/Her) - Dancer
Quinn Muylaert was raised in Port Perry, Ontario, on the traditional territory of the Mississaugas of Scugog Island First Nation. She is currently in her fourth and final year of the SFU Dance program. Quinn finds great excitement in trying out different movement styles and absorbing as many different movement qualities as possible.
Sonja Kwantes (She/Her) - Dancer
Sonja is an emerging dance artist residing on the traditional and unceded territories of the Musqueam, Squamish, and Tsleil-Waututh nations. She is currently a first year dance student at SFU and is excited to continue her passion for dance and her choreographic abilities through her studies.
Stella Da Yun Song (She/Her) - Assistant Director & Music Area Representative
Based in Vancouver, Stella, is an emerging musician, composer, and performer. Her great interests in traditional Korean music and performing arts create a unique crossover art with other world musics.
Sydney Bluck (She/They) - Dancer
Sydney Bluck was born and raised on the Indigenous lands of the Missisaugas of the Credit First Nations in the place now known as Guelph, Ontario. Currently, she is focusing on developing her choreographic and creative abilities, along with pushing beyond her instinctual habits in movement practice. In the future, she aspires to continue with this art form by pursuing opportunities that will allow her to train, perform, choreograph and teach.
Tiffany Au (She/Her) - Graphic Designer
Tiffany is currently in her fourth year of study at Simon Fraser University’s School for the Contemporary Arts, with a major in dance and a minor in print and publishing, based in so-called Vancouver on the traditional, unceded lands of the Musqueam, Squamish and Tsleil-Waututh Nations. She has an interest in working with printed materials and loves making fun, beautiful things. In her free time you can catch her sipping on an iced coffee, frantically finishing an assignment or taking a nap.
Toni-Leah C. Yake (She/They) - Composer
Toni-Leah C. Yake (European, Kanien’kehá:ka – Turtle Clan) is a composer residing on xʷməθkʷəy̓ əm, Sḵwx̱ wú7mesh, and səlilwətaɬ territories. Her work explores identity, blood memories, trauma, and healing.
Yen Chi (Emily) Lee (She/Her) - Dancer
Originally from Taiwan and China, Yen Chi (Emily) Lee is now an emerging artist learning on the unceded traditional territories of the Musqueam, Squamish, and Tsleil-Waututh nations. Emily is a first year student at SFU and is passionate about the art of dance and collaborations with other disciplines in the future.
Yifan (Yvonne) Liang (She/Her) - Lighting Designer
Yifan (Yvonne) Liang is a fourth year Theatre Production & Design student from China. For the past four years, she has been studying in school how theatre is produced and managed, and she enjoys exploring the relationship between specific spaces and experimental installations. Her future focus will be on exploring strategies for constituting time-based practice and challenging the relationship between media, performance, community and audience.
Zuzanna Liniewski (She/Her) - Lighting Designer
Zuzanna is a third year Theatre Production & Design major at SFU from the Lower Mainland. She found her passion for theatre lighting at a young age and is now pursuing a career as a designer. This show is an opportunity to experiment and explore lighting within dance performance as well as to enhance movement, expression and emotion within her work.