Search
This form does not yet contain any fields.

    WHAT THE CRITICS SAID...

     … about Sporting Life (2016)

    "...Energentic, mancing, dramatic...a show of many moods, original movement and striking imagery: a frame upon which several narratives could hang...., it's a winning gamble for Danceworks and Sasso, who leaves nothing on the table in the brilliant revival.

    - Susan Walker's ArtsBlog


     … about Julia Sasso (2005)


    “Best Of Toronto – Stage/Best choreographer: A new work by… Julia Sasso is a reason to get up and dance…” - Glenn Sumi, NOW

     …about Julia Sasso (2001)

    “…one of the foremost dance artists in the country." - The Dance Current

     …about Julia Sasso (2000)

    Sasso is one of perhaps a dozen contemporary modern dancers in Canada who is simply breathtaking in motion.” - The Ottawa Citizen

    … about simple lines of enquiry – first study (2009)

    “…a beautiful piece of inquisitive choreography danced in and around Ann Southam’s piano piece… played by Eve Egoyan. Sasso’s choreography did not appear to be led by Southam’s minimalist score as much as she used the serial qualities of the piece to explore and trace the stage space, making it her own. … Sasso’s solo suited the gallery-like space… Her dancing – gentle, lyrical, infused with hints of passion – never made an absolute statement, but rather allowed the work to be taken in much like a piece of abstract visual art, open for personal interpretation and enjoyment.”

    - The Dance Current

     

    … about accidental dances (2009)

    “Toronto-based choreographer/performer Julia Sasso's acclaimed solo, accidental dances (2008)… with the 52-year-old artist further developing the work as a poignant tribute to the ephemeral nature of dance. But it's so much more than that, with the elegiac ode both reassuring and disturbing as a contemplative act of remembrance. Not a single movement is wasted, with every flicker of choreography rich with intention - a wave goodbye as if to the past, a cryptic scrawling of a message on the floor, an eventual collapse onstage that creates a resolute sense of finality. As its three sections slowly unfold to Ann Southam's evocative piano score, what is most haunting is Sasso's utter placidity which suggests a fatalistic acceptance of the ravages of time.” - Holly Harris, Uptown Magazin  

    … about accidental dances (2008)

    “Sasso seems to float in slow motion… Her movements echo long after the motion has expired… Sasso approaches transcendence… In rare passages of flight, the lissom Sasso developpé-pendulums through to handsome arabesque, moments that are all the more savoured for their restrained place in the choreography. The work turns on concepts of time, which brings the physicality of Sasso, as a woman long steeped in dance, into focus. Each movement ripples with an eternal dedication to dance that has crystallized into an unforgiving, ideal expression, and with it, the myth of the time limit on the dance-life of a dancer gracefully gives up the ghost.”

    - Penelope Ford, The Dance Current

    “Sasso is a revered senior artist, and how nice it is to see her back on stage again. Her three part accidental dances, set to a reflective score by Ann Southam, is all about maturity. Sasso is known for her dramatic pauses, and this piece interpolates moments of stillness within gentle, sculptured movements that speak volumes about life and loss. This is a dance show of intelligence and wisdom.”

    - Paula Citron, Classical 96.3

    "In accidental dances, Sasso puts a spell on us with a slowly advancing dance... maintaining a flow that equals grace. At the peak of her powers... sasso has definitely fallen into herself." - Susan Walker, The Toronto Star

     

    … about unspeakable (2008)

    “… physical images of personal inquiry that stimulate the imagination… unspeakable is built around provocative poses, and depicts a woman both scorned and defiant… This is a dance show of intelligence and wisdom.”

    - Paula Citron, Classical 96.3

     

    … about Passacaglia/Biber RePass (2007)

    “… a series of clear, poised movements that flowed together into phrases or seemed to throw queries back at the music… permeable and alive… an explicit way… of responding… and of gracefully reintegrating… rarified music into the kinetic patterns of ordinary life… witty… an intriguing experiment that stopped a number of passersby in their tracks.”

    - ROBERT EVERETT-GREEN, The Globe and Mail

    … about accidental dances (2007)

    “It is a powerfully rewarding tribute to bear witness to the premiere of accidental dances… I have never seen her perform live, never heard her breathe life into work nor felt the pregnancy of atmosphere through which she physically communicates. Julia’s face displays, in exquisite honesty, a kind of bare loneliness. A pure wealth etched into the lines and shadows of her jaw, speaks to the pain of lessons learned. accidental dances… resonates with an emotional potency powerful as any of her more physically challenging endeavours. Julia engages in a dialogue that encompasses past, present and future life. Hovering on the brink between what has already passed and what will come to pass, she leaves us in anticipation. We are torn between the binary relationship of longing to regret.” - MERGE Magazine

     

    … about the betrayal project (2006)

    “When Sasso’s company debuted at Harbourfront (2003)… it generated blockbuster sales, and for good reason. First, Sasso corrals great dancers… Second, her edgy works go deep into the heart of the human condition to reveal the raw underpinnings of the soul. Sasso’s choreographic physicality is as challenging as her emotional content is disturbing.” - Paula Citron, TORONTO LIFE

    “… the betrayal project… added some much-needed passion to the winter dance scene… What was astonishing was how quickly Sasso and her five terrific dancers… managed to shift tones. A playful scene could morph into something dangerous; an erotically charged moment could suddenly become violent… Loved the imaginative use of harmonicas… and the suggestive set that evoked shadows and the forbidden.” 

    - Glenn Sumi, NOW

    “… the mark of a talented choreographer… a superb cast… The choreographer plays the audience like a seasoned angler… movement that embraces her usual big sweeps and lunges that put the total body in play, a crisp, muscular physical language for which she is noted… Her choreographic talent runs deep."

    - Paula citron, The Globe and Mail

     

    …about Into the Woods (2005)

    “Fabulous foray into faiy-tale territory… Finally, some action! The current Stratford season received a much-needed jolting spark of creativity, vision and inspiration… Into the Woods opened to (for once) a justly deserved standing ovation… thrilling… a most intriguing piece of theatre…”

    - Kamal-Al Solaylee, The Globe and Mail

     

    …about Beauty (2003)

    “…full of raw energy… Human desire and existential longing are powerful emotional currents that run freely through Beauty… a dance that is so meticulously honed that it is hard to imagine either taking from or adding to it. At the same time, Beauty contains moments that seem so spontaneous, almost improvisational, that you could imagine it being made up on the spot. Sasso blurs all the lines… fresh, inventive and fully developed.” - Michael Crabb, National Post

    …about Beauty (2003)

    “The dance contains no explicit narrative, yet it has the emotional impact of great drama, like a Strindberg play produced without words. Mature content, for sure. Beauty marks the coming of age of a remarkable choreographer.”

    - Susan Walker, The Toronto Star

    “The mesmerizing dance is polished yet raw, passionate yet cerebral, sophisticated yet instinctual, physical yet reflective. Beauty was one of the big hits at Ottawa’s Canada Dance Festival last June (2002), and its second coming to Toronto’s Premiere Dance Theatre… should prove that Sasso has arrived.”

    “Sasso’s graphic vocabulary hits home… The piece packs an emotional wallop, and the vulnerability of the dancers is so intimate and personal that Beauty is at times a gut-wrenching experience.” - Paula Citron, The Globe and Mail

    …about Beauty (2002)

    “2002 THE YEAR IN DANCE: The Best

    Julia Sasso’s gutsy and highly physical Beauty…” - Paula Citron, The Globe and Mail

    “Julia Sasso’s Beauty used the title word as an umbrella to examine the beauty of life, from birth to death, and took great risk in presenting the five dancers in vulnerable situations, whether as mewling and puking babies, or depicting graphic sexual encounters replete with appropriate orgasms. Sasso’s gutsy piece has been the surprise hit of the festival thus far.” - Paula Citron, The Globe and Mail

    “…unique, powerful and memorable… definitely worth seeing.” - The Ottawa Citizen

    “The closing item, an excerpt from Julia Sasso’s work-in-progress, Beauty, made for the most impressive choreography of the day: a poetically composed exercise in group dynamics featuring an outstanding cast...” - Susan Walker, The Toronto Star

     

    …about The Illegibility of this World (2001)

    “…wonderfully  rendered…bold, muscular movement and tightly controlled poses…a dance of strength that became more vulnerable…angst dissipated by a kind of empowering acceptance.” - Paula Citron, The Globe and Mail

    “…the most engaging piece…solidly and energetically performed, and enjoyable for the beauty of the movement alone.” - EYE Weekly

     

    …about It was like this. (2001)

    “…excellent…a portrait of lived-in reality…a community brought together and torn apart by shared experience…exquisitely articulating, through finely  honed gesture…an expressionistic portrait of a life characterized by cries and whispers.”

    - Deirdre Kelly, The Globe and Mail

     

    …about DUST (2000)

    “ The work treats states of loss and longing: the dance becomes a crucible, firing emotion into gesture. The dancers give themselves to the intricate emotional connections of the work. The dancing is sensual, physical… the dancers’ relationship unfolds with a painful inevitability. The gestures are tender and true… The range of texture in the work is sophisticated; the tensions, sensuality and nuance, subtle… one of the strongest works I see at the Festival… Sasso’s work speaks with craft, musicality, investigation, maturity and passion.”

    - Carol Anderson, Chasing the Tale of Contemporary Dance Part 2

    “…gutsy, full-blooded movement that sweeps and rolls across the stage…contrasted with quiet moments of gentle tenderness as the dancers’ bodies wind and unwind.”

    - Michael Crabb, National Post

     

    …about THE WHIRLPOOL (2000)

    “…one of the most original dramas in years. Guided by Sasso’s choreography, the actors move with the uncanny waywardness and grace of objects- sticks, bottles, bodies- being manipulated by powerful and complex currents. Their contortions fracture and emphasize their speeches in strange ways, giving the effect of a new language struggling to be born- one more deeply embedded in the natural world. THE WHIRLPOOL …points, excitingly, in fresh directions.”

    - John Bemrose, Maclean’s

    “…a theatrical work of haunting beauty. The push and pull of this triangular relationship finds its most articulate expression…during choreographed sequences…The tension, both in the story and the way it is told, is between the explicit and the sublime. The performances are composed and fluidly synchronized. THE WHIRLPOOL, like the natural phenomenon from which it takes its name, has the force to draw you in.” - Vit Wagner, The Toronto Star

     

    …about MAA (1999)

    “Sasso’s choreography is marked by a fluid elegance that gives the work its surreal quality, a dream play where lives search for the meaning of existence. Always interesting is her double stage pictures where behind or beside the main dance focus, is another meant to be viewed as footnotes.”

    “…sensuous…enigmatic…violent…intriguing…" - Paula Citron, The Globe and Mail

    “In MAA… Julia Sasso used her Dancemakers legacy of clean craft and athletic movement as a frame for messy, organic glimpses of life. It was as if the seams of the dance had been ripped open in places, like skin stripped from a body to reveal the organs underneath.” - Rebecca Todd, EYE Weekly

     

    … about BOY MEETS GIRL (1998)

    “… one of the most charming dance sequences in all of Canadian film." - TAKE ONE

     

    … about SCHMERZEN (1998)

    “The work that touched me most was Julia Sasso’s SCHMERZEN, a wise, beautifully realized duet …Sasso is so expert a dance maker she has rubbed it clean of extraneous detail and any hint of preciousness. Full of dignity and pain, Sasso herself is as strong-featured and redoubtable at centre stage as Glenda Jackson in her prime. SCHMERZEN reminds us of what magic the best dance can weave, showing us tales from our own lives, sanctified and ennobled.”

    - Michael Scott, The Vancouver Sun

     

    … about SPORTING LIFE (1996)

    " A stunning discovery!...exceptional performers, elegant choreography...I can't wait for the next installment." - ZONE Outaouais

    "... captivating... the movement seems to create a wind that comes through and caresses our faces. Glued to our seats, we want more and more...an absolute success"

    "...striking...with a stifling lucidity...passionate and violent..."

    " The intent...has such clarity that it is easily identified and appreciated at  full value by the spectator."

    "...powerful choreography, one of the most enjoyable since the beginning of the (Canada Dance) Festival ..." - Le Droit

    "...who could forget the impact of SPORTING LIFE... deceptively understated...alive with aggressive energy...high-impact dancing in the Montréal manner, yet imbued with a humanistic concern." - William Littler, TheToronto Star

    “Sasso’s unique spin on male violence and aggression…one can understand why the piece made such a splash (at the 1996 Canada Dance Festival). In shifting encounters of physical ferocity, they repeatedly hurtle themselves through space like canon balls…Sasso has absorbed well the lessons learned from the films of Martin Scorsese, Sam Peckinpah and Quentin Tarantino- that depicting brutality can become an art form in itself. The delight of Sasso’s choreographic exploration is that it raises as many questions as it answers. Kudos should also go to Sasso and Eric Cadesky for the inventive soundscape…” - Paula Citron, The Globe and Mail

     

    ...about MAXINE (1993)

    "...almost in a class by  itself."

    "Sasso, relentlessly expressed personal tragedy with the full range of emotion, from moments of tenderness to times of sheer terror." - Dance Connection

    "...strongly accented movement...powerful text." - The Globe and Mail

    "...exciting art...powerful text. Sasso attempts to embody Maxine rather than illustrate her story...a subtle characterization...it expands rather than mimics the narration." - EYE Weekly

    "...Maxine, her extraordinary solo journey...hailed by capacity audiences...compassionate...and compelling... - NOW

    " A gorgeous piece...filled with pathos and compassion...Sasso's angst-filled movement captured the tormented free spirit of the lost girl.”

    - Dance International

    ...about THE THEORY AND PRACTICE OF RIVERS (1992)

    "..the most accomplished piece at fFIDA (fringe Festival of Independent Dance Artists)...twenty solid minutes of intellectual and provocative philosophy via dance..."

    - stepTEXT