RBC Emerging Choreographer 2022

Abby Rowe – Kittiwake RBC Emerging Choreographer in Residence

Headshot by Stacey Birmingham

February 17, 2023 – “Fine Arts Friday” session

At the invitation of the NSO, Abby attended their “Fine Arts Fridays” virtual session today. Today’s session gave schools and school children across the province an opportunity to learn about composer Aaron Copland and to see the artistic collaboration of ballet and symphonic music that was this year’s local presentation of  Appalachian Spring. The teachers and children were also able to engage in a real-time dialogue with Abby and Murray.


January 22, 2023 – Premiere of Appalachian Spring


It was a beautiful evening of music and dance as we witnessed the premiere of Abby’s Appalachian Spring, with Murray Lefebvre’s premiere conducting. Such a great opportunity for Kittiwake to partner with the Newfoundland Symphony Orchestra once again.  We remain very grateful to the RBC Foundation for the support of emerging artists in our province.  This type of performance would not have been possible without the Foundation’s support.


January 15, 2023 – Emerging Conductor Attends Dance Rehearsal



In preparation for conducting the premiere of Abby’s new work “Appalachian Spring” next weekend, the NSO Emerging Artist Conductor, Murray Lefebvre, attended this afternoon’s dance rehearsal. Since Murray will conduct the premiere with the NSO players and it is his first time working with dance, it allowed him to see Abby’s creation in action and to take notes on the timings in various sections. And to have a little fun at the end conversing with Abby and Martin!

December 6, 2022 – Emerging Artists Meet for the First Time

An exciting feature of this year’s emerging choreographer program is the unique partnership Kittiwake has formed with the Newfoundland Symphony Orchestra. The NSO-RBC Emerging Artist Conductor 2022-23 will conduct the January 22 concert, where the new choreography will be performed. Today via Zoom, Abby met Murray Lefebvre, this year’s Emerging Artist Conductor, in a creative meet and greet. They were joined by Martin Vallée and Calla Lachance.

November 9, 2022 – Creation Continues


Abby has been very busy throughout the fall creating and setting her new choreography on Kittiwake company members, using Aaron Copland’s Appalachian Spring, which will see its premiere on January 22, 2023, at the St. John’s Arts and Culture Centre. We asked Abby to reflect on the progress to date, “Kittiwake dancers possess incredible artistic diversity and the music for this piece has allowed their individual strengths to be showcased. This has created a really unique quality to the choreography that I couldn’t have imagined when I started this process.”

October 5, 2022 – Guest Choreographer Session

One of the features of the emerging choreographer residency is that it allows the opportunity for Abby to receive ongoing mentorship. She has worked with our Artistic Director, Martin Vallée, and has met established guest choreographers for discussions on her work in progress, her career aspirations and goals, and professional development opportunities. Caroline Niklas-Gordon, a Toronto-based choreographer, performer, and dance instructor, met with Abby when she was in town for the Festival of New Dance. They spent a few hours together discussing the creation process.

August 17, 2022 – Concert Details Announced

During Abby’s residency, she is creating an original dance piece set to Aaron Copland’s Appalacian Spring, one of Copland’s most enduring and popular orchestral works.  In a unique and exciting partnership, Kittiwake dancers and players from the Newfoundland Symphony Orchestra will be conducted by the NSO’s Emerging Conductor in Residence for the performance  Tickets went on sale today for the Sinfonia 2: Spring Flowers concert on January 22, 2023.

August 5, 2022 – Program Launch


With mentorship from Kittiwake’s Artistic Director Martin Vallée, Abby has now started to develop choreography! This year, our RBC-Kittiwake Emerging Choreographer-in-Residence program is operating in partnership with the Newfoundland Symphony Orchestra. Abby’s piece will premiere at the NSO’s Sinfonia concert in January 2023, performed by Kittiwake’s company of dancers. We look forward to seeing Abby’s development, and her new work in the new year!



July 18, 2022 – Announcement

Following the success of the inaugural Kittiwake RBC Emerging Choreographer-in-Residence program, Kittiwake Dance Theatre is pleased to announce that, with the generous support of RBC Foundation’s Emerging Artists, we will once again provide the opportunity for a Newfoundland and Labrador dancer to hone their skills as a choreographer! Our second Emerging Choreographer-in-Residence is Abby Rowe, who has been a company member of Kittiwake since 2021. Over the next six months, Abby will receive mentorship from late-career choreographers while creating a new dance work to be performed by Kittiwake’s dancers in January 2023. We look forward to seeing Abby’s development as a choreographer, and express our thanks to the RBC’s Foundation for its continued support of emerging artists in our community! The RBC Emerging Artists Project is a multi-year funding commitment dedicated to supporting the careers and development of emerging artists, through mentoring programs, education, and providing access and exposure to new audiences. Kittiwake is very grateful for the continued support from the RBC Foundation.