Open Space

Open Space

About Open Space

The National Ballet of Canada’s Open Space provides 1,200 hours of free studio space each season at The Walter Carsen Centre to dance artists in Toronto. By sharing the National Ballet’s resources with the local dance community for one to two-week periods, Open Space aims to support a wide variety of dance genres and disciplines. Dance artists at any place in their career working on movement research, a new creation or further developing an existing work are all encouraged to apply. We welcome and encourage applications from gender non-conforming/trans, LGBTQ+, visible minorities and indigenous artists. This programme its currently suspended due to COVID-19 and we look forward to welcoming you into our studios when it is safe to do so.

The selections are made by an advisory committee made up of the National Ballet’s Choreographic Associate and Creative Producer of CreativAction Robert Binet as well as members of the local dance community. The advisory committee changes each season and in the past has included Rodney Diverlus, Anisa Tejpar, Hanna Kiel and Kevin A. Ormsby.

The committee will aim to dedicate approximately one-third of the space to projects focused on movement research, one-third to artists who have an upcoming performance and need to get the work ready for the stage and one-third to artists who are revising or re-staging existing works. The committee will look for applicants that are focused on movement development as there is no capacity to bring production elements (i.e. sets, technical equipment) into the studios.


  • Open Space is available for periods of five to seven days or 10 to 14 days
  • The days may not follow a typical Monday to Friday schedule
  • The studios will generally be available from 10:00 am to 6:00 pm on weekdays, 3:30 pm to 9:00pm on Saturdays and 2:00 pm to 8:00 pm on Sundays
  • There is a cap of 20 participants per group
  • All participants must sign a waiver and release form

Studio Space:

  • The studio spaces available for Open Space are those used by the National Ballet for rehearsals and therefore only non-marking footwear is permitted. Due to the sprung floor and vinyl surface, any footwear that creates high impact in a small area (i.e. stiletto heels) is not permitted as it could permanently damage the floor
  • Sound equipment and pianos are available for rehearsal purposes
  • No A/V or large equipment or set pieces permitted in the studios
  • No overnight storage permitted

If you have any questions about Open Space please email

How to Apply for Open Space:

The programme is currently suspended due to COVID-19 but we will reopen the application form as soon as it is safe to welcome you into our studios.

Some past and upcoming participants in the Open Space programme are:

  • Alysa Pires - Alysa Pires Dance Projects
  • Alyssa Martin - Rock Bottom Movement
  • Amanda Pye
  • Andrea Nann - Dreamwalker Dance Company
  • Belinda McGuire - Belinda McGuire Dance Projects
  • Brodie Stevenson
  • Candice Irwin
  • Caroline Fraser - Fall For Dance North
  • Christy Stoeten
  • Dancemakers Peer Learning
  • David Norsworthy
  • Emma Kerson
  • Eva Connelly-Miller, Sarah McLennan, ZoĆ« Kenneally - ZESTcreative
  • Gavin Law
  • Heidi Strauss - Adelheid
  • Howard Davis - Aportia Chryptych
  • Irma Villafuerte
  • Jake Ramos
  • Jane Alison McKinney - Wild Rabbit Dance projects
  • Jessica Runge
  • Jessie Garon - Vazari Dance Projects
  • Julia Cratchley - TranscenDance Project
  • Kalaisan Kalaichelvan
  • Katherine Semchuk - Nostos Collectives
  • Kathleen Rea - Reason d'Etre
  • Kunal Ranchod
  • Lauren Runions - I/O Movement
  • Lucy Rupert - Blue Ceiling Dance
  • Maddie Hanson
  • Martha Hart
  • Mateo Galindo Torres
  • Meryem Alaoui
  • Michael Caldwell
  • Mushtari Afroz
  • Naishi Wang
  • Nicole Decsey
  • Nina Milanovski - Black Sheep Dance Projects
  • Patricia Pyrka - Late to the Party Ballet
  • Peter Chin
  • Robert Kingsbury
  • Rodney Diverlus
  • Sara Porter
  • Shakeil Rollock
  • Shannon Litzenberger - Shannon Litzenberger Dance
  • Sophie Dow
  • Sylvie Bouchard - BOUCHARDASE
  • Tina Fushell