Alen is a Canadian-based ethnochoreologist, dancer, and choreographer. He received his Bachelor of Arts in Dance from the University of Calgary in Calgary, Alberta, where he studied under highly acclaimed choreographers and scholars, Wojciech Mochniej, Melissa Monteros, Davida Monk, Michèle Moss, Anna Mouat, and Melanie Kloetzel. His time in Ireland, where he received his Master of Arts in Ethnochoreology, further added to his professional training, both in dance and scholarly pursuits in dance, including working with Dr. Anya Royce, author of Anthropology of Dance , Dr. Catherine Foley, a leader in dance studies in Ireland particularly with Irish dance, and RAS Mikey C, formerly with Pilobolus and currently in Ethiopia developing Ethio-Modern work.

In his current breadth of work, Alen is focused primarily on dance acadæmia, putting much of his efforts into furthering dance theory and ethics and is in the process of submitting a paper for publication. In terms of performance and choreography and in addition to presenting in this year’s IGNITE Dance Series, Alen is preparing for two other projects, but the details are T.B.D. 🙂

Outside of his dance work, Alen works professionally as a venue coordinator with a focus on theatres and concert halls, having worked with Arts Commons (Jack Singer Concert Hall & Engineered Air Theatre) and currently with Mount Royal University (Bella Concert Hall, Wright Theatre, & Leacock Theatre). One of his highlights in this role was having assisted Decidedly Jazz Danceworks in preparing their new theatre for its opening and continued operation.


Christina Robertson grew up dancing at McDonald Wilson Dance Academy, and is lucky to still call it her home as both a student and a
teacher. She is trained in classical ballet, jazz, modern, contemporary, tap and acro. Over her years as a professional dancer, she has trained and performed with the University of Calgary, Disney Performing Arts, Studio Bollywood iDance (now Sparq Productions), in Kelowna at OSDI, with Jeunesse Classique Ballet, En Corps Dance Collective and Gravity Dance Company. She has been a company dancer for Trip the Light Dance and Performing Company since 2013 and has had
the opportunity to perform with Trip the Light all over Calgary at
various festivals including Soulocentric Festival, Fluid Festival and
Soul Steps. Christina is excited for the opportunity to perform with
Ignite this year!


Chantal Wall is a Calgary-based independent dance artist who is currently developing her work as a contemporary dancer, choreographer, and filmmaker. Chantal has recently worked for Dancing Monkey Laboratories, DSW’s Alberta Dance Festival, Pam Tzeng, and J-SiK Movements. Since completing her BA in Contemporary Dance, Chantal has danced with the professional training program at Decidedly Jazz Danceworks, interpreted work by Catherine Gaudet in Montreal, adventured to Vienna to train intensively at the ImPulsTanz Festival, and has performed work in Calgary by artists including: Denise Clarke, Melanie Kloetzel, and Deanne Walsh.


Lyall Miller has never written a bio before, but is super thrilled to write this one! He’s decided to write in the third person because that’s what he thinks he’s supposed to do. This is his first time working with the Ignite Festival and he is super excited to share his work with you. He just finished his fourth and final year at the University of Lethbridge drama program, majoring in the tech/design stream. He was co-artistic producer for TheatreXtra (U of L’s student theatre company) which produced the first version of the Ignite show All That’s Left. Notable design credits are: If There’s One Thing I Know is True, All That’s Left (TheatreXtra), Portraits Post Drowning (Chinook One Acts Festival)


From the time Susan could talk, she begged her parents to put her in dance classes. They finally relented when she was four and she has been dancing ever since. Susan has studied; ballet, jazz, contemporary, flamenco, tap, belly dance, hip hop, west African, and highland. Susan represented Saskatchewan twice at the Canadian National Highland Dancing Championships, where she received a first place medal. She has studied dance in various places, such as: Regina, with Robin Poitras and Fada Dance; South Australia, with Leigh Warren and Dancers and Australian Dance Theatre; and Calgary, at the University of Calgary and with DJD in their Professional Training Program. Susan is absolutely thrilled to be performing in this year’s IGNITE! and cannot wait to see what opportunities will come her way next.  


Over the last 17 years, Kimberley Ilott has collected knowledge in
urban, contemporary, jazz, aerial, and pole dance. Some of her
training highlights include a BA in Dance with a Concentration in
Choreography & Performance from the University of Calgary,
professional training with Decidedly Jazz Danceworks and
RubberbanDance, and advanced pole and aerial sessions in Montreal, San Francisco, Sydney, and Cairns. She is a multi-genre freelance
performer, choreographer, and instructor, currently upgrading her 200
Hour Yoga Teacher Training through professional development at Bodhi Tree Yoga Centre. Kimberley feels at home on many stages, from Late Night at the Plaza to Shambhala Music Festival.


Janelle Schiffner 


Eric Osborne 


Jennifer DeWolf


Jessica Haggeman is primarily a theatre stage manager, so she is excited to be expanding her repertoire by stage managing both the Interdisciplinary Series and the Dance Series with Ignite! This is her second year being a part of the Ignite! Festival and she is stoked to be working with so many great new artists. Jessica spent a year in Toronto in Ryerson University’s Performance Production program, and she plans on returning in the fall to continue pursuing theatre in Toronto.


Kyra Newton holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Contemporary dance and Sociology from Simon Fraser University. While in University she focused on performance studies and choreography. She has had the opportunity to dance for choreographers such as Wen Wei, Desiree Dunbar, Crystal Pite, and Judith Garay. Kyra has taken part in several professional dance programs over the years; Shen Wei Dance Arts 2017, Hofesh Shechter 2016, Thodos Dance Chicago 2015, Arts Umbrella 2010, Alberta Ballet 2009, and Royal Winnipeg Ballet 2008. As a performance Artist, Newton has recently danced for Corps Bara Dance Theatre and taken part in Meghann Michalsky Research Experiment of 2017. Kyra’s latest dance performance was at Decidedly Jazz Dance Theatre where she performed the duet I am____. with Quinn Kliewer. The duet was choreographed and performed through the A.I.R. Program facilitated by W&M Dance Projects. Kyra Newton is also a committed member of La Caravan Dance Theater. She performed in their recent show Fihi Ma Fihi at Theatre Junction Grand 2016 and contributes to the 5Rhythms movement classes. Currently, Kyra is choreographing and rehearsing for Alberta Dance Theatre with local dance artists. She is very excited to be a part of Ignite! Dance Series this year and is looking forward to sharing her work with the Calgary Community.


Lisa Claydon


Serenella Sol started dancing Ballet at the age three with Gisela Paz de la Rosa Ballet School in Maracaibo, Venezuela. She displayed a special talent for Ballet and thrived under the philosophy of performance over technique.  This perspective is one that she carries on today with her intense passion for dance.

At seventeen, she moved to Canada where she studied Ballet and Contemporary in Vancouver and Calgary.  This was an important time for Serenella, as this was the first time she studied Dance in an academic setting.  Also, this is where she met her mentors and guides: Melissa Monteros and Wojtek Mochniej, who are important to her dance career to this day.

In Serenella’s desire to expand her perception of Dance, she has exhaustively trained abroad.  She has taken summer intensives with the Alicia Alonzo Institute in Spain (2010), Alonzo King Lines Ballet in San Francisco (2011), The San Francisco Conservatory of Dance (2011), SIBA summer intensive at Salzburg (2012), The Dutch Summer intensive at The Hague (2012), and Blueprint Summer intensive at New York (2012).

In 2013, she graduated from the University of Calgary with a BA in Political Science and a Minor in Dance. She has danced for La Caravan Company (2011), Jeunesse Company (2012), and Alberta Dance Festival 2011/2012/2013. Serenella presented her choreographic work in the  Alberta Dance Festival 2011-2014, Fluid Festival SPARK 2011, and Montage 2012.  She is currently a dancer with W and M Physical Theatre under the artistic direction of Melissa Monteros and Wojtek Mochniej where she has danced since Spring 2013 in “Triangular Theories of Love” (2014), “The Cube” (2013-2014) and “Waiting Rooms in Heaven” (2015) which was presented at the University of Calgary and in the 2015 Company Poland Tour.


 As both a dancer and choreographer, Terra Plum is an emerging artist in the Calgary Dance community. Originally from Ontario, Terra trained at California Pacific College of the Performing Arts (California) and completed her BA in Dance with Honours from the University of Calgary. From 2011-2014 Terra trained at Decidedly Jazz Danceworks in the Professional Training Program. She has performed with contemporary dance company kloetzel&co., Front Row Centre Players, Storybook Theatre and The University of Calgary’s Operetta Company. Terra has danced in Alberta Dance Festival, Fluid Festival, Footprints, Nextfest, Shoes Off Cabaret, Pro Series 2014, Soulocentric and Variety Pack Cabaret. She has also danced in and co-produced CrossCurrents 2014 and 2016. When she’s not dancing, she is working as a physio at her very own Physiotherapy business, Pulse Physiotherapy! Terra is thrilled to be in the studio rehearsing and creating with her friends for Ignite!


The Dance Series at IGNITE! features the creative and bold work of emerging choreographers: Janelle Schiffner, Chantal Wall (with composer Eric Osborne), Kyra Newton, Alen Chaudhry along with fifteen incredible dancers!

Dance Series curated by Pam Tzeng
Stage Managed by Jessica Hageman
Lighting Design by Lyall Miller.

Wednesday, Jun 7th, 2017 at 7:00 pm
Thursday, Jun 8th, 2017 at 8:15 pm
Saturday, Jun 10th, 2017 at 7:00 pm

Pumphouse Theatre
2140 Pumphouse Ave SW
Calgary, AB T3C 3P5

Tickets & Additional Information: http://sagetheatre.com/

Full Descriptions:
The Light at End of the Tunnel, Choreographer: Janelle Schiffner
Light has given rise to many positive outcomes, but has also limited us. Light defines space and time. Shadow depicts a mirror image of the subject.Simultaneously, they exist one next to the other in both space and time. The dimensions of a shadow can expand proportionally faster than the object’s own rate of movement.

The invention of the light bulb provided society with longer work hours, increasing productivity over time but also stress. This energy source augmented a sense of control over the population. This control encouraged the rate at which the speed of light could be influence. The light bulb, itself, also inspired a larger spectrum of color, bringing greater essence to life that already existed.

Tunnel, Choreographers: Chantal Wall & Eric Osborne
A tunnel opens up as the underworld leaks out into the human world through absurd and seemingly insignificant events. The fates measure and divide while we are faced with our demons.

“Suddenly the earth yawned and opened wide with gulf immeasurable… and forth leapt a savage cohort of ghosts: forms which spawn and lurk midst the eternal shade.” – Seneca

I am Intrinsic, by Choreographer: Kyra Newton
Breathing is an essential part of our everyday life and yet is often ignored. Movement that originates from the breath requires more from the mover and in turn establishes can create a deeper dialogue between the two. This piece explores multiple forms of breath related to our experiences as human beings, the dancers unravel the variety of patterns and emotions attached to an inhale and exhale.

Averting East choreographed by Alen Chaudhry
This work takes inspiration from a personal adventure where an identity, coerced subliminally from birth, is one that no longer applies to the individual and is no longer desired. Conscious in every respect, this identity shift encounters difficulties and consequences both anticipated and unexpected.

The IGNITE! Festival presents exciting work from new voices. Take in the bleeding edge of theatre, music, and dance at a festival dedicated to supporting, mentoring, and presenting emerging artists of all disciplines.

Be sure to follow Sage Theatre and the IGNITE! Festival on Facebook, or tune into #IgniteYYC on Twitter for more festival action!

Want to volunteer for this event? We are currently recruiting volunteers! Sign up here: http://www.signupgenius.com/go/20f0949a4ae22a4f85-ignite

*Treaty 7 Land*
The IGNITE! Festival acknowledge this event takes place on the land of the Treaty 7 People, The Blackfoot from Kainai, Blood, Siksika, and Peigan, The Sarcee from Tsu’tina and Eden Valley, and the Stoney Nakoda people from Morley. We are all treaty people, visitors to this land and we give thanks to the people who came before and keep this land for us and all our future generations.

IGNITE! Graphic by Simone Saunders