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Volkswagen Canada

May 12, 2009 15:44 ET

Canadian Choreographer Wins Best Newcomer at Movimentos Awards

Volkswagen's Communications Platform, the Autostadt, honours Dave St-Pierre

WOLFSBURG, GERMANY--(Marketwire - May 12, 2009) - It is with great pleasure that the Autostadt (, the Volkswagen Group's theme park and communications platform announces its award winners for the second International Movimentos Dance Prize. The Awards are part of the prestigious Movimentos Festival Weeks, a 6-week celebration of international arts and culture hosted by the Autostadt in Wolfsburg, Germany (the home of Volkswagen). The Volkswagen Group, through its communications platform, supports contemporary dance from around the world, in fact Movimentos has now become one of the most successful festivals on the European calendar drawing over 43,500 guests in 2008 alone with ticket sales of 97%.

The Autostadt's central theme is mobility, with the motto: People, cars and what moves them. In creating the festival in 2002 the Portuguese word for movement "Movimentos" was chosen as the name of the festival, and Dance as the key discipline as the most aesthetically pleasing form of human movement. The Awards take place every five years in collaboration with the national German television channels: ZDF and ARTE, and pay tribute not only to outstanding work in the field of contemporary dance but also aim to foster promising new talent.

In the category of Best Newcomer, the award goes to Dave St-Pierre of Montreal. St-Pierre has gained world-wide fame for his provocative and sometimes shocking work and is regarded as one of the greatest talents on the Canadian dance scene. He and his company were guests of the Movimentos Festival Weeks in 2005 with his choreography: "La Pornographie des Ames" literally: The Pornography of the Soul. The piece is a hymn to the human spirit, an ode to the beauty of life. St-Pierre takes his performers and the public to the very brink of what is possible, physically and psychologically, in this way exposing them to yet more unfamiliar emotional adventures.

The photograph captioned "Dave St-Pierre in action" is available at the following web link:

St-Pierre says about his piece, "My work is a combination of three art forms: theatre, dance and performance. I love to discover new ways in which these three can co-exist in harmony. What interests me most is the energy that a performer brings to a piece, no matter whether that is crudity, playfulness or brutality, because these can elicit strength as well as weakness. It is common for young performers to express this kind of energy. I am one of the few artists who prefer to show life as it is, instead of merely hinting at it."

The Canadian shares the Award with Hofesh Shechter; rising star of the British dance scene, Shechter's young ensemble is the resident company at the Brighton Dome and is regularly to be seen both internationally and in London's premier dance locations, amongst others at Sadler's Wells.

Awards are as follows:

Lifetime Achievement Award choreographer Lin Hwai-min (Taiwan)
Best Choreography "Entity" by Wayne McGregor (Great Britain)
Best Dancer (female) Mercedes Ruiz (Spain)
Best Dancer (male) Abou Lagraa (France)
Best Newcomer Hofesh Shechter (Great Britain)
Best Newcomer Dave St-Pierre (Canada)

An international jury, consisting of renowned patrons and aficionados of contemporary dance, was responsible for the decisions taken. In addition to the Artistic Director of the festival, Bernd Kauffmann, the jury consisted of:

Guy Darmet, Director des Maison de la Danse and the Biennale de la Danse, Lyon,

Karene Lyngholm, Artistic Director of the Dansens Hus, Oslo,

Gisberto Morselli, Director des Teatro Communale di Ferrara,

Alistair Spalding, programme director for Sadler's Wells Theatre, London,

Christiane Winter, Artistic Director of TanzTheater International, Hannover.

The International Movimentos Dance Prize is worth a total of Euro 60 000 and is part of, and supplementary to, the Movimentos Festival Weeks of 2009. The award ceremony will take place on Tuesday the 12th of May 2009 at 20h00 at the Volkswagen Group's HeizkraftWerk (original listed power station), the main festival venue. Additionally excerpts of all the prize winners' work will be performed. On Thursday 14th of May the event will be broadcast at 22h30 on ARTE.

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