Kunji Ikeda (he/they) plays with physical communication to grow physical, emotional, and spiritual wellbeing within his community. His fearless political work explores our communities most pressing political ideas and has earned multiple Betty Mitchell award nominations for performance and choreography. Ikeda has trained intensively with One Yellow Rabbit and has offered his diverse dramaturgical lens to dance, theatre, choir, and musical ensembles across Canada. Through the Paris based L’AiR Arts, Ikeda became a member of an ongoing international cohort of interdisciplinary artists with the intention of empowering artists as vectors of cross-cultural dialogue to fuel the evolution of culture, politics, and society.
Ikeda was awarded the Enbridge Emerging Artist Award by the Calgary Arts Development Authority in 2015, as well as named an Artist in Residence at the Banff Centre 2019, to generate his massive dance theatre adaptation of Dostoyevsky’s Crime and Punishment. In February 2020 Ikeda was invited into the rehearsal process of Akram Khan’s work Creature with the English National Ballet. In the summer of 2020 their clown-dance work Know the Rules, Win the Game was one of five Canadian works curated to present at the Canadian Dance Showcase at the world renown TanzMesse in Dusseldorf Germany. Their award-winning solo performance Sansei: The Storyteller continues to be presented internationally. They were honoured to serve as Programming Director of the National Association of Japanese Canadians first national arts summit for the fall of 2022, and was also named One Yellow Rabbits Arts Leadership Associate.
Ikeda is passionate about recognizing and supporting performance ecologies on multiple scales; small-scale workshops, mid-scale productions, and large-scale cities. Ikeda has been a passionate advocate for equity seeking voices and diverse representation in the arts. They were a founding member of the 35//50 Initiative (now part of Theatre Alberta) inviting Alberta based arts organizations to ensure artistic spaces reflected the diversity of the communities we live in.