Lesley Telford is a Vancouver-based choreographer and teacher who has returned to her hometown after a career in Europe spanning 20 years. She is the artistic director of Inverso Productions and on faculty at at Arts Umbrella's Professional Dance Program, leading the Performance Research Project (PReP). She has a long standing commitment to emerging dancers in our community and is dedicated to create platforms for research and development and performance opportunities that allow these dancers to grow as artists.
Lesley finished her studies in Montreal at L ́École Supérieur de Danse du Québec before joining the company Les Grands Ballets Canadiens. She went on to dance with Nacho Duato ́s Compañia Nacional de Danza in Madrid, Spain. Most recently she danced with Netherlands Dans Theater 1 where she worked with choreographers such as Jiri Kylian, Paul Lightfoot and Sol Leon, William Forsythe, Ohad Naharin, Johan Inger, Crystal Pite and others and performed in major theatres worldwide. She has set and staged the work of Jiri Kylian as well as Lightfoot/Leon.
She has a Master of Arts in Cultural Production at the joint program of the University of Salzburg and the Mozarteum. She was also a fellow in a joint research project with the Zurich University of the Arts in 2013. She was selected by Crystal Pite for the Vancouver Mayor's Arts Award 2015 as emerging artist in dance.
As a choreographer, she has created for Ballet BC, Netherlands Dans Theater 1, Hubbard Street Dance Company 2, Compañia Nacional de Danza 2, Ballet Vorpommern, International Project for Dance in Rome- DAF, Butler Ballet, University of Utah and Arts Umbrella Dance Company. She is the founder of Inverso Productions, a platform for interdisciplinary performance. Through Korzo Productions and Inverso Productions, she produced and choreographed Brittle Failure, which was a part of tours and festivals in Spain, the Netherlands and Canada. Inverso is presently continuing to develop and perform the project Spooky Action at a Distance, which was created in residency at The Dance Centre in 2017.