Dance Immersion’s 3rd edition of Doing Our Thing allowed various artists to collaborate, explore different creative medians and practices. Dance Immersion is a not-for-profit organization that focuses on producing, promoting and supporting dancers and dances of the African Diaspora.
The evening began with the Elite Dance Company performing “Silent Cries,” a modern dance of movement amongst several dancers transforming the message of a busy life that people fail to see those who need help. Some of the dancers moved erectly around those dancers that stood still as if they were in a world of their own.
The next performer was Kevin Reigh, born in Jamaica and raised in Toronto with Transitions reading several poems. His poems flowed as the words vibrated from his mouth with ease, softness and determination, at times the verses were spoken with the tempo of a rapper adding a musical tone to the poems.
Another dance performance by Artist in Motion with “Earth” telling a creative story about Gaia and her influence of ruling people and new generations. The dancing composed of several dancers was a poetic show of arms and legs rhythmically moving to the music. The dance piece was choreographed by Shameka V Blake.
Amadou Kienou, a master drummer, born in Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso, is the seventh son of a family of praise singers (griots) from Dafing origin, played a very colourful drum called the djembe, along with other instruments. Along with Amadou’s vibrant, bright outfit, his slaps and beats to the drum with his voice brought the audience alive. The drum beats and smiles were contagious and brought a cheerful mood to the theatre. His three songs reflected the values, emotions and culture from his upbringing and family life.
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A special appearance was made by United Kingdom’s Kristina Alleyne of Alleyne Dance, based in London performing a solo extract, “The Other Side of Me.” Her athletic background showed in her dance movements with her endurance, strength and grace. The dance opens with Kristina ruffling thru a vast pile of clothes on the stage trying to find something to wear. The whole dance continues as she tries and struggles to find the perfect piece of clothing to wear, the frustration of not finding the right article is shown thru her dance moves, something as women we have all experienced.
(words BY Mary Jane Mendes)
(Photos by MJM PIX)