practice dance, music, fashion, art that comes out of people of African
descent. Out of our struggles, through our pain, and in our moments of
joy and creativity. I canNOT be silent as our lives are being taken away
by the very people who also exploit our power. We canNOT ignore
critical moments or simply pick and choose when it is
convenient to express our 'Africanism' or our 'Blackism'.
Dance Mission, Global Street Dance Project and D-Fuse Dance present
Bacchanal de Afrique 2014 A Night of Afro-Urban Dance and Music
From Azonto to Zouk; Coupe Decale to Hiphop; Dancehall to Vogue;
Afro-house to Soukous and more. Bay Area Afro-Urban Dancers, DJs and
Musicians come together for a night of true afro street and club revelry
showcasing the diversity of Africa and her Diaspora. A light-hearted,
high-energy presentation and exchange of Afro-Urban dance and music
Performances and DJ Dance Party featuring: Nkei Oruche Rashad aka Soul Nubian (The Global Street Dance Project) Dj Mpenzi Nkei & Rashad’s Afro-Urban Dance Performance Workshop Yaïr & Chalianna of Dança Makèzú Thobs the Zulu Queen Samad Raheem Guerra Rocssy Mahania Shemica Watkins Asatu Musunama Ebun Omoni Edward Galán Shaneeka ‘Akemi’ Smoot Obiamaka Eke Jasmine McClain DJ Bisou The Bacchanal de Afrique Music Collective Zakiya Harris & Elephantine
DJ Mpenzi Spinning Coupe Decale | Azonto | Dancehall | Soca | Naija | Kwaito Ndombolo | Afrobeat | Afro-House | Hip Hop | & More
When I do workshops I usually try my best to share some information about what I'm teaching, music I use and anything else that I think is interesting. It's part of the whole experience of exploring dance to me. I can't possibly teach (or know) everything there is to about the dance and music in the Afro-Urban world, so I like to create it as an ongoing conversation. For the current Afro-Urban Dance Performance workshop at Dance Mission I will try my best to post weekly about what's happening: for the participants and for anyone who's interested in my ramblings. I've reworked a title "From Azonto to Zouk: Nkei's Afro-Urban Alphabet" and will continue to flesh it out as we go: Drawing from the A-Z dance concept (you've seen those videos yeah?)... I've decided to compile my own alphabet set, on what I find noteworthy relating to Afro-Urban dance. For this blog series, I will be posting about what I cover in class.
A: Azonto vs. Alkayida Sep 30 2014 @ Dance Mission
After Rashad set the workshop series off the previous week with Afro-House (which covered various areas including Panstula from South Africa), we kicked it into gear. First stop: Accra, Ghana, West Africa... Azonto & Alkayida styles are just those that when you see it, when it gets in your body, it's hard to let go. Once I got the basic Azonto move down, I was doing it ALL. THE. TIME. to every sound and style of music. It was lightweight frustrating because I couldn't help it, I would pretty much only be able to do that. Which I imagine is not the worst problem to have. Anyway, it is pretty cool to follow how this dance craze started, from some obscure dance step to a whole slew of dance vocabulary and music genre and now morphing and evolving alongside the recent alkayida movement. Looks like Ghana is staying on the Afro-pop map for a while and not letting go anytime soon. I'm standing on my toes, wondering what will be next. Is there already a next? On Sep 30, 2014 (Session 2) here's how we got down:
I am currently away with my family from the city (with built-in free childcare while here). Ah the bliss! This has given me the ability to have time to focus on creating, planning, and organizing as I count down the days to all kinds of Bay Area Music and Dance Goodness! Everything from baby to adults, I got ya! Here's a quick list of what's going down (click each for more info).