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A TDT Tribute to Yuichiro Inoue

May 23, 2024

Celebrating 18 Seasons of Yuichiro’s Dance Contributions to Toronto Dance Theatre

We find ourselves at a poignant moment in the history of Toronto Dance Theatre.
We begin our tributes by honoring Yuichiro Inoue and his remarkable career, as he concludes his 18th and final season as a full-time company dancer.
We are thrilled to present a special reflection from Rosemary James, TDT’s Rehearsal Director, as she shares her insights and fond memories of Yuichiro’s transformative presence within our dance community.

For 18 seasons at Toronto Dance Theatre, I have had the opportunity to witness Yuichiro Inoue’s optimistic and compassionate contribution as an ensemble member, artist and teacher. In 2006, Yuichiro commenced his performing journey with TDT and his myriad of performances have excited audiences with his technique and partnering skills, musicality, movement quality and stage presence. Throughout his time, he has engaged with a variety of choreographers and processes that exemplifies his curiosity, collaboration, focus, diligence and kindness. These opportunities challenged and impacted his artistic growth.

Yuichiro has taught company classes in Toronto and on tour for TDT. Company dancers and students have appreciated his positivity and knowledge during these contemporary classes that were fun, motivating and energetic.

Yuichiro cares deeply about his fellow ensemble and staff members. If a dancer became injured, he would be the first to retrieve ice; or in the studio and on tour, he would often make himself available to assist in the heavy lifting of a prop or suitcase. He is resilient. 

On March 11, 2011 while on tour with TDT in Edmonton AB, Yuichiro in performance ruptured his left achilles tendon on stage during Pteros Tactics (2010). Back in Toronto he received the necessary care for his injury and by September, he was ready for another season with TDT. 

I admired his tenacity and spirit to keep pursuing his dancing career.

There are several memorable moments performed by Yuichiro that reflect the artist that he has become. Some of my favorite performances consist of duet work with various ensemble members. They are intimate, sometimes haunting, or heart breaking. 

In his solo work, his sense of play and humour are performed in Party Next Door (2016). In Vena Cava (1998) his precision, musicality and technical skill were on display, and in Rivers (2012) he sculpted and sliced through the space with specificity and speed.

Over the years at 80 Winchester Street, I can often be found tidying up or preparing schedules well after folks have left the building. Coincidentally Yuichiro tends to be the last company dancer to leave. Ready to lend a hand and keep me company, he would stay and help with tasks that I may be doing. 

I will cherish these moments because we would chat about family, teaching, longevity and dancing.

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