Marie Josée Danbrook (née Dubois) - Computer Programmer

I knew I was incredibly lucky, and I lived my dancer's life with passion and commitment. However, I was fully aware that my dream could be short-lived, and I had always known that I would eventually do something else.

Excerpt from 25 Transitions © 2011 Dancer Transition Resource Centre.

Birthplace: Montréal, Québec
Principal training: L’École Supérieure de Danse du Québec
Danced with: Desrosiers Dance Theatre, Toronto Dance Theatre
Retrained in: Computer Programming
Currently: E-commerce Solutions Developer and mother of two amazing children

It seems I've always danced. I would choreograph little dances in my parents’ basement and lose myself in them (I am so glad there are no videos of this!). During my formal dance training at École Supérieure de Danse du Québec, I dreamt of becoming a ballerina, but two specific events helped me find my true dance voice. At the 1986 Jacob's Pillow Dance Festival and out of a group of incredibly gifted and accomplished ballet dancers, I was chosen to dance the title role in a contemporary piece to be performed during the last week of the festival. The following summer in Banff, I danced a small role in Cloud Garden, a new work by David Earle that would literally change my life. I had not felt this honest and natural since I began my dance training. I could finally lose myself in a dance again. Without hesitation, I packed up everything and moved to Toronto to study modern dance at the School of Toronto Dance Theatre. 

In 1990, I joined Desrosiers Dance Theatre at a time when Robert Desrosiers was assembling a new company, to explore a more technical and dynamic style of movement. It was a wonderfully creative and exciting time during which I developed a special dance partnership with Robert Glumbek. Dancing the duet Tree of Life with him remains my most cherished dance memory to this day. 

I knew I was incredibly lucky, and I lived my dancer's life with passion and commitment. However, I was fully aware that my dream could be short-lived, and I had always known that I would eventually do something else. I met with DTRC alumni Todd Carter, and learned about his new career as a computer programmer. That was it – I was hooked. I knew I had found something that captured my imagination, and I was ready. Thanks to a grant from the DTRC, I dove in with great conviction and delight, reveling in the challenge. 

After 12 years in the corporate world, I left my “safe” position as IT Manager at TD Bank to become self-employed and spend more quality time with my family. I’m breathing again. I also find myself getting up from the computer from time to time and dancing around my living room…

DANCER TRANSITION
RESOURCE CENTRE

Helping dancers make necessary transitions into, within, and from professional performing careers since 1985.