ballet edmonton Dance on Film
“we are of the soil and the soil of us, that we love the birds and beasts that grew with us on this soil. A bond exists between all things because they all drink the same water and breathe the same air.”
-LUTHER STANDING BEAR, My People the Sioux
“I acknowledge that I am a settler on Treaty 6 territory, the traditional lands of Indigenous Peoples, including Cree, Saulteaux, Niitsitapi (Blackfoot), Métis, Dene, and Nakota Sioux Peoples. In respect and accountability for Indigeneity, I am committed to continuous research and work toward unsettling the abhorrent reality of colonialism and strive to mend the painful repercussions of our Canadian history. This includes a critical awareness of the Canadian government’s current treatment and plans of action in coordination to Indigenous land, resource and bodies. I believe it is a responsibility and an invaluable privilege to invest in supporting Indigenous communities, and to come to a deeper understanding of how to be an ally for Indigenous Peoples.
Not isolated to, but in light of the current momentum building within the Black Lives Matter movement, I am devoted to fighting for black lives and taking action in having black lives seen, heard and respected. I recognize the profound and immutable work that black artists and leaders have done to shape, liberate and uplift the creative industry. As an artist I consume and have benefited from the work of black artists. I recognize and am grateful for the innumerable ways in which the black community has contributed and have paved the way within the arts.”
Music Artist: Naoya Sakamata
Special thanks to Chris Checkwitch for filming and inspiration.
Justin is a second generation Filipino-Canadian from Winnipeg MB, the traditional territory of Anishinaabeg, Cree, Oji-Cree, Dakota, and Dene Peoples, and the homeland of the Métis Nation. He began dance at Sisler High School with instructor Lisa Forsyth Yosyk and continued studying in ballet before moving to Vancouver to attend the Arts Umbrella dance program.
He studied and performed works by Crystal Pite, Aszure Barton and Mats Ek, among others. After graduating, Justin joined Ballet BC as an apprentice under the directorship of Emily Molnar and performed works by Sharon Eyal, Emily Molnar, and Medhi Walerski. Justin has worked with Vancouver-based companies Inverso Productions and Wen Wei Dance. He is keen to intersect with diverse artists and engage in conversation that will bring joy and expansion to his practice. Justin joined Ballet Edmonton in 2019.