History of the company

The Sursaut Dance Company was founded in 1985. Since 1987, Francine Châteauvert has been artistic director and choreographer, and through her creations has succeeded in giving Sursaut a genuine identity. From the beginning, she has collaborated closely with Adam Dymburt, and together they have worked with passion and seemingly endless energy to develop the company as we know it today.


For the first 10 years or so, the Sursaut Dance Company created, produced and disseminated dance works for both a general audience and for young audiences aged 4 to 12 and their families. In 1998, the artistic direction decided to officially concentrate on creations for young and family audiences.


In 1989, Sursaut began presenting its productions on tour in Quebec. In the early 2000’s, the dissemination of the company’s works spread to other parts of Canada as well as internationally. The company’s production At nightfall was presented at the 2010 Vancouver Cultural Olympiad, the Calgary International Children’s Festival, the Northern Alberta International Children’s Festival, the Festival des arts de St-Sauveur, and the Ottawa International Children’s Festival. In 2012, Sursaut became the first foreign dance company for young and family audiences to tour in China, participating most notably in the Second China Children’s Festival in Beijing. Since then, the company has returned to Chinese soil for three more major tours, in 2014, 2016 and 2018. In addition, three tours in Mexico were completed, with the productions At nightfall in 2014 and The Cicada and the Ant in 2015 and 2017, when the show opened the Festival Internacional de Danza Contemporanea Lila Lopez.


Having at heart the future of the company, the artistic director has been collaborating with young artists who are invested in the company and with whom she shares an artistic affinity. This is the spirit in which the company’s latest productions came to be: Me squared, choreographed by Stéphanie Brochard, and Acuna, choreographed by Amandine Garrido Gonzalez. A forward-looking path, whose trajectory is in line with the artistic approach for which Sursaut has become known. It is this same vision that gave birth to Essaim, a project that highlights the talent of up and coming choreographers who each have a rich and singular creative process.


In tandem with the creation, production, and dissemination of its works, the company offers workshops for elementary and high school students. Since 2005, the company also holds a summer day camp specialized in dance for youth 6 years and older.


Since December 2007, the company has been resident at the Centre des arts de la scène Jean-Besré, and thanks to the support of the City of Sherbrooke, benefits from this unique space conceived and built for the creation and production of dance and theatre works. In 2009, the Sursaut Dance Company joined the Théâtre du Double signe and the Petit Théâtre de Sherbrooke to found Côté scène, an organization working to develop the performing arts for young audiences, as well as towards the construction of a new venue specialized in dance and theatre works for children and their families, which will see the light of day in the spring of 2020.


Through its notoriety and artistic activities, the company contributes to the development of a community of professional performing artists in the Sherbrooke region, and its presence continues to be crucial to the maintenance and growth of this community.


The Sursaut Dance Company holds an important place on the Canadian dance scene, and is an ambassador for the region both nationally and internationally.