We’re pleased to welcome the inimitable Keith Hennessy to Dancemakers for Post/Contact, a week-long professional training workshop following our presentation of his new work Bear/Skin. The workshop looks at ways to critique and evolve the practice of Contact Improvisation and use Hennessy’s recent work Turbulence as a starting point for investigating normative disruptions and calculated disregard for generally accepted rules of engagement.

 Photo by Michael Rauner.

Photo by Michael Rauner.

About Keith Hennessy

Keith Hennessy was born in a mining town in Sudbury, Canada, lives in San Francisco, and works regularly in Europe. He is an award-winning performer, choreographer, teacher and organizer. Hennessy directs Circo Zero, a laboratory for live performance that plays with genre and expectation. Rooted in dance, Hennessy’s work embodies a unique hybrid of performance art, music, visual and conceptual art, circus, and ritual. A Queer 20th Anniversary featured Hennessy in two solo performances: Saliva (1988-89) & Crotch (All the Joseph Beuys References in the World…) (2008), as well as How To Die (2005-06), a collaboration with Jules Beckman and Seth Eisen.

Hennessy was a member of Sara Shelton Mann’s legendary Contraband (85-94), as well as the collaborative performance companies CORE (95-98) and the France-based Cahin-caha, cirque bâtard (98-02). His work is featured in several books and documentaries, including Composing While Dancing (Melinda Buckwalter, U of Wisconsin: 2010), How To Make Dances in an Epidemic (David Gere, Univ of Wisconsin: 2004), Gay Ideas (Richard Mohr, Beacon: 1992), and Dancers in Exile (RAPT Productions, 2000). Hennessy is a co-founder of 848 Community Space/CounterPULSE, a thriving performance and culture space in San Francisco. 


  • United States Artist Kjenner Fellowship (2012)
  • Bilinski Fellowship (2011)
  • New York Bessie Award (2009)
  • 2x Isadora Duncan Awards (2009)
  • Goldie (2007)
  • Alpert/MacDowell Fellowship in Dance (2005)

In 2009-10, Keith was awarded residencies at The MacDowell Colony, Yaddo, and Djerassi. Commissions include National Dance Project (Turbulence 2012), Arsenic, Lausanne (Crotch, 2008), Centre ChorÈgraphique National, Belfort (Sol niger, 2007), Les Subsistances, Lyon (Sol niger 2007, Homeless USA, 2005), Les Laboratoires, Paris (American Tweaker, 2006), FUSED (French-US Exchange in Dance), and Lower Left Performance Co, San Diego (Gather, 2005). 


Turbulence (2011)

Turbulence — a dance about the economy — is a wreck that resembles a pop-up version of Occupy Wall Street. At any given moment in Turbulence, situations, both inconsequential and those charged with political meaning, erupt all over the stage.
— Gia Kourlas, New York Times



35 training hours
(7 hours daily)


Tuesday, May 12 -
Saturday, May 16
11 am - 6 pm


Dancemakers, Main Stage 313
9 Trinity Street, 3rd Floor
Toronto, ON M5A 3C4
> Get Directions