As we approach the 20th anniversary of Older & Reckless, we shine a light on the senior artists who we are honoured to feature in our celebrations, including the luminous CAROL ANDERSON
Carol Anderson, photo by Donna Griffith
Q&A with CAROL ANDERSON
With a lifetime of experience on stage, what keeps you engaged as a performer?
When I perform now - rarely, and with avid curiosity - connecting with other performers in real time and space with simultaneously shared understanding and unique interpretation is thrilling.
How has your work in dance affected other aspects of your life?
Connection to deep energy flow/understanding the fortitude and strength and resilience of the body; humble knowledge of hard work, sweat and commitment; working with others toward a shared goal; persevering for the sake and integrity of an intention; improvisation – finding a way to realize what is desired, trying things out, staying with it long enough to move past patterns; discipline; understanding that there is always potential for creative development, unfolding, deepening.
Please tell us about a current project or life event that excites you and why.
Garden dancing! I love outside events, combining my love of gardens and flowers and dance.
Please talk about a highlight or pivotal moment from your dancing past.
In public school a visiting teacher led a creative dance class – I recall this as a pivotal moment, the freedom and joy of flying on the music – when I think of it, I see a little kid, leaping ecstatically around a gymnasium on a dim long ago day – an object lesson that no dance class, performance or experience is unimportant – you truly never know who might hear the call of the elusive muse of dance.
What do you like best about being an "Older & Reckless" dance artist?
Freedom to dance beyond expectation, beyond age-ism, beyond able-ism, toward other understanding of body wisdom and the humble joy of dancing on the earth. Not really caring or minding what others think!
Carol Anderson – dancer, choreographer, director, teacher and writer - started her performing career with Canadian pioneer Judy Jarvis in 1970. A founding member of Dancemakers in 1974, she danced, choreographed for, and was active in the direction of the Toronto company until 1989. Anderson is the author of an evolving body of research and writing on Canadian dance and other cultural matters, as well as poetry books Still Dances and Two Voices, with Trish Beatty. An Emerita of York University's dance program, she taught undergraduate and graduate studio and studies courses from 2002-2016 and remains a lifelong investigator/educator of movement forms. Anderson is a Pilates MatWork and GYROKINESIS® instructor with an interest in elder movers. Her recent creative initiatives are dance installations for gardens and galleries.