Figurehead of the Grands Ballets Canadiens invited to perform around the world, Anik Bissonnette has risen to the firmament of principal dancers, never losing the humility and kindness that win over those around her. Her gentle voice hides an iron discipline that allows her to wear her pointe shoes like slippers and move comfortably between leggings and tutus.
With her outstanding physical qualities, clean, precise technique, musicality, and sensitivity, Anik Bissonnette has conveyed the emotion of the great pieces of classical repertoire, from Petipa to Balanchine. She has also lived up to the standards of renowned contemporary choreographers, such as Jiri Kylian, Ginette Laurin, James Kudelka, William Forsythe, Gioconda Barbuto, and Nacho Duato, several of which have created pieces for her.
Anik Bissonnette’s charisma have made her an incredible ambassador of dance, engaged in her community, passionately advocating for access to culture and the development of patronage. In addition to her career as a performer, she has been artistic director of the Festival des arts de Saint-Sauveur, president of the Regroupement québécois de la danse, and director of the dance company La La La Human Steps.
She dedicates herself to the next generation of dancers in her role as artistic director of the École supérieure de ballet du Québec where she inspires many vocations. Like the Giselle she sublimely interpreted, she shows that love and compassion can triumph over anything.
“Stepping Stones” from the choregrapher Jiří Kylián, and presented by Les Grands Ballets Canadiens de Montréal in 1995. Dancers : Sylvain Lafortune, Anik Bissonnette, Min Hua Zhao. Credit: David Cooper
About the Ordre des arts et des lettres du Québec
The Ordre des arts et des lettres du Québec is a distinction bestowed by CALQ honouring those individuals who have played a prominent role in Québec’s artistic development.
The CALQ would like to thanks its partners, the Caisse de la Culture and the newspaper Le Devoir.