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 multi-talented GERRY TRENTHAM
Gerry Trentham in Danser Joe at Older & Reckless 2016- photo by Tamara Romanchuk
Q&A with GERRY TRENTHAM
With a lifetime of experience on stage, what keeps you engaged as a performer?
Endless potential to get better, the feeling of being one with the audience, the joy of moving, the constant learning, the unending pleasure of overcoming fear, the feeling of being or coming home - where I most belong.
How has your work in dance affected other aspects of your life?
I don’t separate them really - dance is my life my life is a dance. But I hear what you are asking - I am a way better person, partner, listener, worker, lover, seeker because I dance.
Please tell us about a highlight or pivotal moment from your dancing past.
My epic moment comes from when I performed a work of Serge Bennathan’s with Dancemakers at the Joyce Theatre in NYC. After opening to rave reviews the next morning I was walking down the pothole sidewalks of New York, alive, excited and a bit tired. I twisted my head to look at a cute guy going past and hit one of the potholes, went over on my left ankle and chipped a bone in my foot. I was hauled off to the doctor who said I would permanently injure the ankle if I danced the 6 remaining shows. But I had no understudy for my part and could not let my colleagues down — I warmed up with my swollen ankle each night and stuffed the foot in my doc martins and did the show. By the end of the week I was toast. At the most glamorous magical closing night party I had ever been to I was laid out flat on a couch that faced a grand piano in the glorious Tribeca loft — you know the ones — you arrived into the living room from the elevator. After that week I knew that no matter what might come my way I would always be able to survive. I also had a great feeling of being on top and how it is married to the bottom. And that you should always stop walking before you turn to look at someone cute.
What do you like best about being an "Older & Reckless" dance artist?
I love being one of the few remaining who dance for a living — leaving more sustainable work opportunities and dancing for this long is completely reckless.
Gerry Trentham is Founder and Artistic Director of Pounds Per Square Inch Performance (lbs/sq”), an organization that produces Moving Voice Institute (MVI) programs. Gerry created lbs/sq” to foster research into contemporary arts creation and performance and to be a home for over 40 of his award-winning performance productions. With seven Toronto Dora nominations or awards, most recently as a cast and voice director of Denise Fujiwara's hit EUNOIA, his performances have been internationally acclaimed. He has taught, choreographed, dialect/ speech coached, mentored theatre and dance creators, and directed internationally. Gerry has appeared several times at Older & Reckless, 2006- 16.