Part-time Instructor, Contemporary Dance
Part-time Instructor, Loyola International College
Part-time instructor, Fine Arts
Philip Szporer is a Montreal-based filmmaker, writer, and lecturer. He has been immersed in the Canadian dance world for over 35 years. Currently, he teaches in the Contemporary Dance department, the Faculty of Fine Arts, and the Loyola College for Diversity and Sustainability at Concordia University. He served as a Scholar-in-Residence at the Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival in Massachusetts (2000-2016). In 1999, he was awarded a Pew Fellowship (National Dance/Media Project), at the University of California, Los Angeles. And in 2010 he was the recipient of the Jacqueline Lemieux Prize awarded by the Canada Council of the Arts. He was recognized with a Distinguished Teaching Award from Concordia University’s Faculty of Fine Arts in Spring 2016.
In 2001, Philip along with Marlene Millar, co-founded the Montréal-based award-winning media arts production company, Mouvement Perpétuel. Together they have co-directed and co-produced many documentaries and short dance films to great acclaim. Their work is seen widely at festivals worldwide and at major events such as the 2010 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games, the 2010 Shanghai Expo, and a UNESCO tour of Latin America.
Mouvement Perpétuel's mandate is to explore the endless possibilities of dance on film, sharing the stories of exceptional artists. Projects exploring new technologies include Lost Action: Trace, a stereoscopic (3D) live action/animated film with choreographer Crystal Pite, animator Theodore Ushev and produced by the National Film Board of Canada, and Leaning On A Horse Asking For Directions, an interdisciplinary investigation into visual perception and kinesthetic empathy involving multi-channel stereoscopic 3D (S3D) environment for exhibition, and bridging BaGuaZhang martial arts and contemporary dance choreography. Recent new platform productions include 1001 Lights, for gallery/museum installation and CRU a three-part street dance web series for La Fabrique culturelle (Télé-Québec). A more recent project, Bhairava, a 14-minute site-specific dance-for-camera film, shot in India, featuring dancer and choreographer Shantala Shivalingappa, has received major acclaim and has been shown worldwide.
Philip has also created Inquiry Into Time and Perception, Study #1, two short video portraits for wall-sized projection installations which act as “windows” opening onto the passions and the ambiguities of physical and emotional manifestation. These studies draw on a deep vitality, and intrinsic qualities address the senses, intellect, and imagination.
Philip also served as artistic advisor for interactive exhibits and installations, including the Corps rebelles/Rebel Bodies exhibition at the Musée de civilisation in Québec City, and the Toile Mémoire interactive map project created by the Regroupement québecois de danse (RQD).
Audience engagement to further literacy around the discipline of dance and dance-film has taken him around the globe. Philip has guided dance-film workshops in Finland, Portugal, the United States, Israel, and Mexico. He has also worked as a choreographic facilitator in Montreal, the United Kingdom, Germany, and the United States. Mentoring emerging artists in research and dialogue remains an important part of his evolution. He has also given writing workshops and has lectured widely across Canada, the United States, Mexico, and Europe.
In 2018, he co-founded Dance Words, with Kathleen Smith, which is dedicated to develop ideas and facilitate conversations around cultural discourse through projects such as Critical Conversations and the Wikipedia Dance Project.
Philip’s activities as a broadcast journalist have included stints at CBC Radio, Radio-Canada’s radio arts magazine Aux arts, etc., and as correspondent for The World (BBC/WGBH-Boston). His dance writings have been published in The Dance Current, Tanz, and Dance Magazine, among others.
Further publications include scholarly essays and chapters in Motion Pictures: Dance’s Duet with the Camera (Palgrave Macmillan), Envisioning Dance on Film and Video (Routledge), and the upcoming Oxford Handbook on Jewishness and Dance in Contemporary Perspective (Oxford University Press).
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