Harbourfront Centre Launches its 2023/24 Season of Torque with the Canadian Premiere of Fouad Boussouf’s Näss

Harbourfront Centre
September 20, 2023

Inventive Moroccan-born choreographer opens fifth Torque season, featuring a series of award-winning Canadian and international choreographers

Toronto, ON – Torque, Harbourfront Centre’s esteemed international contemporary dance series, celebrates the launch of its fifth season with an electrifying line-up of international and Canadian choreographers. The 2023/24 season opens with the spellbinding Canadian premiere of Näss by renowned Moroccan-born choreographer Fouad Boussouf, on stage October 26–28, 2023 at 7:30pm at Fleck Dance Theatre.

Fouad Boussouf is lauded as one of the most inventive choreographers in contemporary dance. He takes inspiration from a myriad of dance forms, while also drawing on musical influences from his native Morocco and the Arab world – channeling a signature dance language that includes spontaneous movement and a propulsive non-stop motion.

Näss, inspired by the famous 1970s anti-establishment Maghreb Moroccan group Nass el Ghiwane, a band renowned in Africa for merging traditional Moroccan music with lyrics steeped in political and social injustices, marries intense physical choreography with a fusion of urban hip-hop, electronica and contemporary North African dance, transporting audiences onto the streets of Marrakech. Performed by a cast of seven striking male dancers, Nässtransfixes with its hypnotic and ritualistic rhythms, intense athleticism and acrobatic feats danced to a powerful score led by Roman Bestion, Marion Castor and Boussouf.

“We are thrilled to open our 2023/24 Torque season with Harbourfront Centre’s debut of Fouad Boussouf’s Näss,” says Nathalie Bonjour, Director, Performing Arts at Harbourfront Centre. “Performed with extraordinary musicality and intense physicality, it offers an exhilarating view into the complexities of human kinship, community and solitude.” 

Hailed as “hypnotic … like the sound of a heartbeat” by The New York TimesNäss connects cross-continent threads of ancient and post-modern times with hip-hop and breakdance – dance forms imbued with a spiritual and ritualistic quality, both of which are anchored in traditional Northern African roots just as much as in American culture. Since its world premiere in 2018 at the Pôle Culturel d’Alfortville, France, Näss has toured globally from Bulgaria to Germany, the United Kingdom, Norway, the United States, Morocco and Hong Kong.

Harbourfront Centre’s Torque 2023/24 season presents works embodying the tensions and power of relationships: the ones with each other, history and territory. Following Näss is the Toronto premiere of Stations, an intoxicating solo from the legendary Louise Lecavalier of Quebec’s Fou Glorieux, on November 23–25, 2023; the world premiere of Deciphers, an arresting work centred on the immigrant experience, co-presented with DanceWorks, from co-performers and choreographers Naishi Wang and Jean Abreu, on February 8–10, 2024; the Toronto premiere of Vástádus eana – The Answer is Land, a potent mix of traditional yoik and contemporary dance, highlighting the Sámi people’s connection to homeland from Sámi choreographer Elle Sofe Sara, on March 6–7, 2024 and the Canadian premiere of Gauthier Dance//Dance Company Theaterhaus Stuttgart’s Swan Lakes, a showcase of four distinctly different interpretations of the seminal masterpiece from four of the world’s best choreographers – Cayetano SotoMarie ChouinardMarco Goecke and Hofesh Shechter – on April 18–20, 2024.

Fouad Boussouf will host a masterclass on October 28. To purchase tickets and for information about Fouad Boussouf’s Näss, his masterclass, and the complete Torque 2023/24 season, please visit HarbourfrontCentre.com.

Fouad Boussouf’s Näss is supported by the French Consulate in Toronto.

About Harbourfront Centre 

Harbourfront Centre is a leading international centre for contemporary arts, culture and ideas, and a registered, charitable not-for-profit cultural organization operating 10-acres on Toronto’s central waterfront. Harbourfront Centre provides year-round programming 52 weeks a year, seven days a week, supporting a wide range of artists and communities. We inspire audiences and visitors with a breadth of bold, ambitious and engaging experiences. We champion contemporary Canadian artists throughout their careers, presenting them alongside international artists and fostering national and international artistic exchange between disciplines and cultures.

About Torque

Torque is Harbourfront Centre’s international contemporary dance series, inviting audiences to immerse themselves in the world of exceptional contemporary dance performed by artists from both international and Canadian backgrounds. Since its inception in 2018, Torque has been presenting an annual season featuring five to six performances, taking place from October to May. These performances are thoughtfully curated to showcase the talents of internationally diverse and Indigenous choreographers. Torque further extends its support to Toronto choreographers through commissions, residencies and presentations, nurturing the creation of new dance works. Through the expressive medium of dance, Torque initiates meaningful conversations surrounding our histories, lands, cultures and traditions.

LISTING INFORMATION            Harbourfront Centre presents Canadian Premiere of Näss

Dates:                                         October 2628, 2023 at 7:30pm                       

Ticket Prices:                              $29–$79

Address:                                     Fleck Dance Theatre, 207 Queens Quay West (3rd Floor)

Box Office:                                  HarbourfrontCentre.com

Website:                                     HarbourfrontCentre.com

For further media information, contact

Angela Poon | 604.569.5343| apoon@mpmgarts.com

Ariane Bell Vila | 519.362.9486 | avila@mpmgarts.com