Grant Strate, OC Founder, Department of Dance

Grant StrateA charter member and the first resident choreographer of the National Ballet of Canada, Strate left the company in 1970 to establish the Department of Dance at York University.

Recognized nationally for the strength and excellence of its teachers and programs, York’s dance program has nurtured a generation of notable dance professionals, including Christopher House, Carol Anderson, Tedd Robinson, Patricia Fraser and Denise Fujiwara.

During his 10-year tenure at York, Strate continued his involvement in the larger dance community and his advocacy for the development of the art of dance and dance education in Canada. He chaired the board of directors of Dancemakers during the company’s formative years. As founding chair of the Dance in Canada Association, he organized the first National Dance Education Conference in 1973 at York University. He brought together choreographers, composers, dancers and musicians in mentored creative ‘hothouse’ settings through a series of national choreographic seminars.

A prolific choreographer, Strate has created more than 50 ballets for dance companies in Canada and internationally. He has guest-taught across North America, Asia and Europe, including at New York’s Juilliard School, the Laban Centre in London and the Beijing Dance Academy.

Strate has won many accolades for his contributions to dance in Canada, including the inaugural Chalmers Award for Creativity in Dance, the Governor General’s Performing Arts Award, the Canada Council’s Jacqueline Lemieux Prize, the Lifetime Achievement Award from CORPS de Ballet International, and the Order of Canada.

– Toronto, June 24, 2005
Media Relations, York University

More information:

Grant Strate biography, Arts Alive, National Arts Centre