The Royal Winnipeg Ballet is taking its 'Going Home Star - Truth and Reconciliation' production on a 12-city tour.

Artistic Director André Lewis hopes the production will bring more attention to the legacy of residential schools.

"You look at the outcome of what the residential school has done, and it's not universally a certain [outcome] but it has had an affect. Somebody said, 'Can the ballet change the nation?' And hopefully we can be part of changing that nation." 

The show depicts stories from residential school survivors and their families, using dance to delve into a part of Canada's dark and troublesome history.

Lewis said many voices have helped shape the story that unfolds on stage.

Renowned choreographer Mark Godden created the movements for the show based on a story by author Joseph Boyden.

Former MP and Gemini award-winning actor Tina Keeper is the associate producer, multi-media artist KC Adams worked on scenic design, Tanya Tagaq and Steve Wood and the Northern Cree Singers helped compose the music.


RWB Company Dancers in Going Home Star - Truth and Reconciliation goes first to Ottawa on a 12-city tour. (photo by Samanta Katz)

For dancer Philippe Larouche it's an interesting new role.

"It allows us to use our medium much more differently and with a lot more depth," he said. 

Larouche, who is a clergyman in the production, said the show articulates "very clear ideas and precise concepts that really relate to what to the history of what happened."

The first stop on the tour is in Ottawa on Jan. 28 at the National Arts Centre. There are four stops in Ontario before the show heads back west and finishes in Vancouver on April 9 at the Queen Elizabeth Theatre.