A series to introduce those who work on PPS Danse productions.
Chantal Baudouin / dancer for the production Le Trésor
Your place of birth?
I was born in Moncton, New Brunswick.
How many years have you been dancing?
I have been dancing since I was about 8 years old. I used to do gymnastics.
What is your way of working?
As a performer, I adapt to the way of working of the choreographer with whom I am collaborating at the moment. The approach varies depending on whether we are creating, rehearsing or performing. As a dancer, I work to keep myself in good physical shape, I take classes, workshops, training. Besides all that, I also teach contemporary dance classes.
What are the starting instructions that you are given or that you like to receive?
In creation, sometimes the starting guidelines are concrete and related to the theme, rhythm, space, character, etc. In this case, I feel that my role is to move and create coherent movements that meet these choreographic criteria. It’s a bit like a puzzle or a task/mission to accomplish. Other times, the directions are more abstract or free and so I can allow myself to incorporate my interpretation, have fun looking for the movements that come to me spontaneously and react according to the choreographer’s “feedback”. I like both kinds of directions equally.
Is the coherence of the character you play done in stages or do you have an idea of what it should represent?
At the beginning, my character was a little girl at home on a rainy day with her big brother. During the creative process, the age relationship of the sister and brother was discussed. I am the “little” sister, but am I really Nicolas’ “younger” sister? Laughter. So the character still developed in stages and was also enriched when we shared the role with Audrey and Corinne.
What, for you, makes the difference in your work for young and adult audiences?
Playing and dancing for the little ones requires a lot of openness, passion and skill. These art consumers have eyes that absorb everything. They want to be impressed, entertained but also inspired. Their sparkling imaginations must be guided, but also leave room for dreamy, playful, individual reality and imagination. For these reasons, I feel privileged to dance for young people and to be part of their cultural, artistic and creative development. As a bonus, the post-show Q&A are often very funny.
Do you find your child’s soul again by working on Le Trésor?
Indeed, many of the paintings in the show are directly inspired by discussions about our childhood and the activities we loved to do. So Le Trésor has really bridged the gap so that I can dive back into childhood memories. We have a lot of fun in rehearsals and the material used allows me to rediscover the child soul… I would even say the child soul that I would have liked to be at certain times… and also the child soul that still lives inside me as an adult today.