IME Films and m & s Marshall Productions would like to draw special reconition to this date on the calendar as it is International Dance Day.  The Day was introduced in 1982 by the International Dance Council (CID, Conseil International de la Danse), a UNESCO partner NGO, and is celebrated yearly, on April 29. The date is not linked to a particular person or a particular form of dance, although it’s also the day when the French dancer and ballet master Jean-Georges Noverre was born. The main purpose of Dance Day events is to attract the attention of the wider public to the art of dance. Emphasis  is put on addressing a new public, people who do not follow dance events during the course of the year.


Every year, the president of the International Dance Council sends the official message for Dance Day which circulate in every country around the world and is posted at the official website for Dance Day.


Dance is an important form of expression in which the short film Struggles Within focused on and tells an entire story through dance dealing with the issue of depression. The story is an emotional look at one young women’s struggle with depression, and her choice as to whether she wants to continue to live.  The film is a join production between m & s Marshall Productions from the London area and Chatham based IME Films.  “It’s a film that explores depression through dance” Marshall explains. The film is written and directed by Corrinne Wood. When asked about the film Wood had this to say “mental illness is something really near and dear to my heart, and this film is designed to show an audience who may not be struggling with a mental illness what kind of daily struggles really goes on inside the mind of someone struggling with depression.”   Marshall and Wood are co-producing the production.


The leading role of the young women in the film is played by St Thomas Native Katie Ostojic who has been dancing competitively since she was 8 years old. She has participated as a backup dancer in the Family Channel’s, The Next Step and in the summer of 2012 her dance troupe traveled to London, England to provide entertainment through dance at the Summer Olympics.  Katie feels dancing in this film is a wonderful opportunity to do what she loves the most, to dance. “Being part of this film is an opportunity to inspire others, especially youth” says Ostojic when talking about her role in the film.  She goes on to say, “The story about overcoming demons and finding hope Is one I know well, and It’s an honour for me to tell this story through the art dance. Hope changes everything”.


The cast of the film also features Camryne Quinn who plays Depression. Camryne who dances at Dance Pointe Studio in St Thomas, filled the role as one of the choreographers of the dances in the film as well.  She has won choreography awards for two of her dance pieces that she choreographed for the 2016 competitive season. The principle cast is rounded out by another St Thomas native in Morgan Flanagan who plays the role of Hope.  Flanagan is a graduate of Lester B. Pearson school for the arts, with over ten years of dance.


The rest of the cast is made up of a number of dancers from St. Thomas, London and Chatham Area. Including: Julia Hunter, Olivia Torrance, Talitha Wood,  Elizabeth White, Bianca Sinclair, Abby Johnston,  Amy Krosnicki, Nia Wood, Ashley Wood.  The film saw it’s Premiere at the Chatham Film Festival, however the production team is working on some tweaks to the production to further enhance the story dealing with depression. A new release will be planned in the near future.

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