In-Person | Toronto Premiere | All-Ages

Crystal Pite: Angels' Atlas

Past Event

Oct 3

7:30 pm
Meridian Hall

Join us for the exclusive one-night-only screening of Crystal Pite: Angels' Atlas, a new documentary that brilliantly captures crucial moments of the ballet’s rebirth, from tentative disbelief, to the joy of reunion, to intense rehearsal and refinement. Commissioned by the National Ballet of Canada.

Journey through the raw and emotional lead up to the opening night of the National Ballet of Canada's first production post-lockdown, after two years. Observe as world renown Canadian choreographer Crystal Pite and the dancers, explore themes of grief, loss and connection against a backdrop of reflective light.

Directed by one of Canada's leading documentary filmmakers, Chelsea McMullan, Crystal Pite: Angels Atlas follows Pite and the artists of the National Ballet as they return to the stage to remount the critically acclaimed ballet after a nearly two-year shutdown due to the pandemic. The visually stunning film grants audiences unprecedented access into the choreographer’s creative process, through intimate rehearsal footage and candid interviews, as the film builds towards an emotional opening night marking the National Ballet’s first performance onstage at the Four Seasons Centre for the Performing Arts after lockdown.

The centrepiece of the film is an uninterrupted cinematic capture of the 30-minute ballet, which was shot over three days on stage at the Four Seasons Centre in Toronto. The work unfolds against a wall of moving light that creates an illusion of depth and evokes the natural world, connecting with the ballet’s themes of impermanence and – equally – the human body’s vitality within a vast, unknowable world. 

A former dancer with Ballet British Columbia and Ballett Frankfurt under William Forsythe, Pite is one of the most in demand choreographers today. She is Associate Choreographer of Nederlands Dans Theater, Associate Dance Artist of Canada’s National Arts Centre and Associate Artist at Sadler’s Wells, London. Her company, Kidd Pivot, performs her original creations around the world. 

This is an in-person presentation taking place at Meridian Hall (1 Front Street, Toronto).

All seats are $15, +HST and fees.

This event is also part of the Festival Package, which can help you enjoy additional festival performances and save 15%. Festival Packages are available now. 


Performance schedule:

Monday, Oct 3, 7:30 PM

Live artist chat, on stage, following the performance.

Moderated by FFDN Artistic Director Ilter Ibrahimof and Turn Out Radio's Nicole Inca Hamilton.

Maya Bankovic - Cinematographer
Sean O'Neill - Producer
Siphe November - Featured Dancer, National Ballet of Canada Principal Dancer
Heather Ogden - Featured Dancer, National Ballet of Canada Principal Dancer
Hannah Galway - Featured Dancer, National Ballet of Canada Second Soloist


Film length: Approximately 65-minutes



Executive Producer: Barry Hughson, Karen Kain, Hope Muir

Producer: Sean O’Neill

Cinematography: Maya Bankovic

Editor: Lindsay Allikas


Scenes from Crystal Pite: Angels' Atlas

Scenes from Crystal Pite: Angels' Atlas

Photo by Luis Mora


Chelsea McMullan works across documentary, experimental narrative cinema, and hybrid films that have explored the work of leading international artists through the cinematic frame. Their forthcoming feature Ever Deadly (TIFF 2022), created in collaboration with Tanya Tagaq, explores Tanya's incandescent and unforgettable artistic voice through the frame of a live performance captured in a single take, punctuated by documentary elements and animations by the internationally renowned Inuk artist Shuvinai Ashoona.