Wednesday, March 21, 2007

African Dance: Sand, Drum, and Shostakovich (en français, in French with subtitles in English)

"This documentary explores African contemporary dance through eight modern dance companies from Africa, Europe and Canada that participated in the Festival International de Nouvelle Danse in Montreal, Canada in 1999. Interviews, including those with dance historians Yacouba Konate and Alponse Tierou, add insight to beautifully-photographed performances. What emerges is a fascinating diversity of contemporary African dance themes and styles. Exploring the interactions between tradition and modernism, the consequences of colonization and urbanization, the self-expression of women through dance, and the roles of masculinity and family relationships, the film is a unique source of information and inspiration for dancers, dance historians, choreographers, critics, as well as those interested in African culture, past and present. "More than ever, as a forum for cross-cultural exchanges, this ninth edition of the Festival showcases African dance because it appears to be undergoing a cultural and artistic renaissance nurtured by the contact and clash between tradition and modernity, and by a reevaluation of its global links. The young choreographers visiting us from Abidjan, a dance capital in Central Africa, from Ouagadougou and Johannesburg, are creating their own special vocabularies, with echoes from ancestral lands and sprawling urban centers. In their works, these artists are living Africa's present and future, with all the anxiety or confidence that this may entail." — Festival International de Nouvelle Danse, Montreal, Canada."

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