Bloodsongs and Tamar Ilana


Bloodsongs and Tamar Ilana

Date: Wed, Nov 07, 2018 08:00PM
Price: $30, $27 Friends, $22.50 students and seniors
Duende Festival Packages:
Save 15% if you purchase tickets to three or four performances
Save 20% if you purchase tickets to all five performances
50% parking discount available if you purchase tickets to three or more performances

Integrating elements of Yemeni and Arabic dance with exquisite music of the Middle East – from Islamic and Judaic sources, Bloodsongs is a theatrical performance about humanity, community, courage, sensuality, celebration, and love.


“We live in tumultuous times, where divisiveness prevails, and even eclipses, tolerance of diversity. Can we humanize the ‘other’ through the depiction of both discord and beauty? Can dance and music make a positive difference? If I did not think the answer a probable ‘yes,’  I would not be continuing the quest, challenging as it is.”

—Terrill Maguire, choreographer of Bloodsongs


Powerhouse vocalist and dancer Tamar Ilana also performs a mix of reimagined Mediterranean melodies and flamenco grooves, and contemporary interpretations of ancient ballads with original compositions.


Flamenco is an art form built on three Abrahamic faiths and the musical expressions of three continents — at first glance, these traditions and contexts seems disparate and irreconcilable. But flamenco is the ultimate example of what happens when artists look beyond limitations imposed by the outside world. The dance form continues to evolve and is shaped by scenes across the planet, as you will experience during the performances and film screening at our fourth annual Duende: Flamenco Festival: Artists demonstrating what awaits on “the other side of fear.”



Tamar Ilana began her flamenco studies with Toronto’s Esmeralda Enrique, and went on to study and perform in Barcelona, Paris, and Seville at the prestigious Fundación de Cristina Heeren. She has studied cante with such masters as Rocío Márquez, Encarna Anillo, Esperanza Fernández and Arcángel, and baile with Rocío Molina, Javier LaTorre, Juana Amaya, and Adela Campallo, among others. She has performed at flamenco festivals across Canada and the U.S. with numerous companies including Esmeralda Enrique, Fin de Fiesta Flamenco, Flamenguitos del Norte, Jorge Miguel, Caroline Planté, and her own ensemble, Ventanas. Ilana has been nominated for and received several awards including OAC Emerging Artist, CFMA Traditional Singer of the Year, Dora Mavor Moore and Helen Hayes Awards for her theatre work.


Bloodsongs’ choreographer Terrill Maguire is an award-winning dancer, teacher, and artistic director who teaches part-time at York University. She is the recipient of numerous choreography commissions, grants, and awards, including the Jean A. Chalmers Award in Choreography, a Dora Award nomination, and an OAC Chalmers Arts Fellowship. Primarily a western contemporary dancer, she has been inspired and informed by the dance styles of many cultures: among her fruitful collaborations have been those with Menaka Thakkar Dance Company (for whom she has also acted as rehearsal director), Persian/Canadian choreographer Sashar Zarif, and Troy Emery Twigg of the Blackfoot/Blood Nation in southern Alberta. 


Toronto dancer Danielle Baskerville is an award-winning performer who has worked across Canada and Europe with DTDE, Adelheid Dance Projects, Trish Beatty, the Art of Time Ensemble, and Coleman Lemieux & Compagnie.


Lucy Rupert is the artistic director of Blue Ceiling dance, creating, producing and commissioning contemporary dance. She has toured extensively and created works for DanceWorks, Dance Ontario, Dusk Dances, and the Whole Shebang. Rupert is a Chalmers Fellowship recipient.


Tyler Gledhill trained at The National Ballet School in Toronto, Het National Balletacademie in Amsterdam, and The Pacific Northwest Ballet School in Seattle, and toured throughout Europe and Asia. He has performed with The Göteborg Ballet, Opera Atelier, The Chimera Project, among others.


Dancer Nicole Rose Bond is a guest artist with Toronto Dance Theatre and taught at the York University Department of Dance. She has performed in works of Patricia Beatty, Coleman Lemieux and Company, Dance Theatre David Earle, Danny Grossman Dance Company, and Christopher House.


Canadian dancer and choreographer Brendan Wyatt began his contemporary dance career in Toronto working for Zata Omm Dance Projects, The Chimera Project, Proarte Danza, and DA Hoskins/The Dietrich Group. In 2009, Wyatt became a core member of Dreamwalker Dance Company, and performed in The Thirst for Love and Water by Cinetic Creations commissioned by the 2015 Pan American Games.


Dancer Robert Kingsbury is a multi-disciplinary artist practicing somatic and conceptual approaches to choreography. A graduate of York University’s Fine Arts program, Kingsbury works in the fields of videography, music composition, and dance.


Musician and music director Roula Said is a Toronto-based singer, instrumentalist, dancer, and actor of Palestinian heritage who has appeared on many theatre and festival stages across Canada. The director of Om Laila Studio, she is also the vocalist, dancer, and percussionista of the funked up Arabic-Roma JUNO Award-nominated band, Nomadica.


Alejandro Céspedes is an active freelance percussionist and educator born and raised in Cuba, and graduate of the University of Toronto and Amadeo Roldán Conservatory. He performs classical, Latin, and body percussion. Céspedes has performed with the Toronto Symphony, the National Opera, Ballet Orchestra of Cuba, Buena Vista Social Club, as well as with Jane Bunnett and Bobby McFerrin.


Ernie Tollar is a multi-faceted musician, composer, and educator with extensive experience in classical, jazz, new, and world-music realms specializing in wind instruments. He has frequently been nominated for JUNO Awards, honoured multiple times for his film scores. A member of various ensembles including Maza Meze, Tasa, Trichy Sankaran Trio, Michael Occhipinti and Holly Cole bands, Tollar has collaborated with Peter Hinton, George Kollar, Daniel MacIvor, B.H. Yael, Bageshree Vaze, Shannon Cooney, Terrill Maguire, and Hari Krishnan.


In Mugham, the dance tradition he developed, internationally renowned musician and dancer Sashar Zarif integrates storytelling and music. During the last two decades and across 32 countries, Zarif has worked to promote cultural dialogue and has received awards and fellowships including OAC Chalmer’s Arts Fellowship, and a Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal.


Matt Sellick is a flamenco guitarist and composer from Thunder Bay. He has performed as a featured soloist with the Thunder Bay Symphony Orchestra and Consortium Aurora Borealis, played with Jesse Cook, and accompanied Esmeralda Enrique. Matt is working on his third solo album, and has recently composed a suite of orchestral arrangements for guitar.



Saturday, November 3, 2018, 3pm


Sunday, November 4, 2018, 6:30pm


Friday, November 9, 2018, 8:30pm


Sunday, November 11, 2018, 4pm

With support from

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