Gioconda Barbuto is an Italo-Canadian dancer and choreographer. She began her training with Gladys Forrester and pursued her artistic development at the Banff Centre and the Royal Winnipeg Ballet. A dancer of explosive wit, subtle intelligence, and a fine sense of theatricality, Gioconda has distinguished herself throughout her career in an impressive number of works by choreographers such as George Balanchine, Nacho Duato, Michel Fokine, Christopher House, Jiri Kylián, Hans Van Manen, James Kudelka, José Limon, Brian Macdonald, Mark Morris, Ohad Naharin, Fernand Nault, Anthony Tudor, Sol León /Paul Lightfoot, Meryl Tankard, Johann Inger, American performance designer and director Robert Wilson and many others. She danced with the Minnesota Dance Theatre before becoming a soloist with Les Grand Ballets Canadiens de Montréal, where she danced for 16 years. In 1998 she was invited by Jiri Kylian to join Nederlands Dans Theater III in The Hague, Holland, with a group of high caliber dancers, all over the age of forty, and toured internationally with the company for eight years. Gioconda is featured in two of Jiri Kylian's award winning Films, Birth Day and Car Men.
In 1996 she was nominated for the Kennedy Center Fellowship and was the recipient of the Clifford E. Lee choreography award. She is a recipient of several grants from the Canada Council for the Arts and has created many of her own solo and group projects with many renowned dance artists, such as Margie Gillis, Ginette Laurin, Paul Andre Fortier, Coleman/Lemieux, Martino Müller, Anik Bissonnette, Emily Molnar and Joe Laughlin to name a few.
Gioconda's choreography has been presented at TU Dance, Ballet BC, Ballet Jorgen, Banff Festival Ballet, Danse Cite, Tangente, L'Agora de la danse, Vancouver Dance Centre, Les Grands Ballets Canadiens, BJM Danse Montreal, Alberta Ballet, Minnesota Dance Theater, Northwest Dance Project, McKnight Fellowship Solo Commission, Bravo FACT, CBC Canada/Films Piche Ferrari, Ballet Kelowna, The Juilliard School, Arts Umbrella Dance Company, You Dance/National Ballet of Canada, Simon Fraser University Dance, Ecole Supérieure de Ballet de Quebec, Dutch National Ballet Academy, Nederlands Dans Theater Choreographic Workshop and many more. Gioconda has also created and directed the graduating production L'Abri, for the National Circus School.
The 2015-2016 season brought many new projects and highlights for Gioconda, she was selected as the 2015 McKnight International Artist and has choreographed and premiered a new work for the partnering company TU Dance entitled FOOTPRINT with music by Gabriel Prokofiev. Her season began with a creation and performance of a new work in collaboration with Joe Laughlin, entitled 4OUR, which will continue on an eastern Canada tour in the fall of 2016. Amongst her many commissions, she will also choreograph a new solo for Joe Laughlin and has been invited back to Arts Umbrella Dance Company, Ecole Supérieure de Ballet de Quebec as well as the Dutch National Ballet Academy. Gioconda also conducted creative movement workshops for Danse a la Carte, Northrop University, TU Dance, and for the summer dance intensives of the Dutch National Ballet, Arts Umbrella Dance and RUBBERBANDance Group. Her workshops will also be featured at the Vancouver Training Society and Yokohama Dance Intensive. This spring, for the Atelier et Laboratoire de Creation, Gioconda will be on faculty for the 10th Anniversary of TransFormation Danse.
Gioconda continues to share her passion for Dance and the Performance Arts, through her choreography, performances, movement workshops, directing and coaching.