The first Canada Dance Festival (CDF) took place in 1987 in Ottawa. Since the festival the following year, it has been presented biennially in June. Large and small companies and independent artists from across Canada are celebrated as the festival takes the pulse of dance creation in Canada.
Founded in 1958 by Ludmilla Chiriaeff, Les Grands Ballets Canadiens de Montréal is the most progressive and experimental of Canada’s three big ballet troupes (the National Ballet of Canada and the Royal Winnipeg Ballet being the other two). It is noted for a diverse repertoire that has emphasized new works as well as traditional 19th-century story-ballets and 20th-century classics. The company has also had a strong record of commissioning original works that are often choreographed, composed and designed by Canadians (see also Dance in Canada).
The Alberta Ballet Company was founded in Edmonton in 1958 by Ruth Carse as an amateur troupe under the name of Dance Interlude. It was incorporated in 1961 as the Edmonton Ballet Company and reconstituted in 1966 as a professional dance ensemble under its present name. Carse retired in 1975.