live interarts events

ANU gathers a dozen established and emerging, contemporary and traditional, multicultural artists from the music, dance, spoken word and visual arts disciplines from one community. Artists come together for a series of rehearsals that lead to a performance of guided improvisation. 

Each ANU event explores a theme - a symbol to unite the group’s intention to work together. Some past themes include War, Love, Hunger, Survive and The Mother. Each event is a live exercise in unity through spontaneous creation, artistic freedom, intense listening, exploration of a theme, group responsibility and trust. ANU asks: “Can you be yourself with others?” 

All artists are on stage for the entire event but each artist performs only when their spotlight shines on them and must otherwise hold silence. Artists never know when the light will come or who else will have the light at that moment. The performance is created by the light. 

ANU was founded by Iraqi-Canadian visual artist Jabbar Al Janabi in 2001 and was inspired by the story of the Sumerian Sky God Anu, whose responsibility is to illuminate the gods so they can create the universe. That idea evolved among the destructive flashes and residues of the Gulf War that Al Janabi experienced in his hometown of Baghdad in the 1990s. What if – in that moment of explosive light – the result could be pure creation, instead of pure destruction? It was those experiences that guided his vision for ANU in the Middle East and Canada; a vision passed onto Tanya Evanson in 2008 that continues today. We are all One.

anu Banff

apr.10 2015 Banff ab

Banff Centre Spoken Word Program

anu 10 - the mother

mar.15 2012 vancouver bc

Roundhouse Performance Centre

anu 9 - survive

oct. 14 2011 vancouver bc

Roundhouse Performance Centre


oct.8 2010 vancouver bc

Roundhouse Performance Centre