An Adinkra symbol from the ancient Ghanaian traditional beliefs depicted by a bird reaching its neck back towards it tail, Sankofa teaches us that before one can truly move forward, one must look back to the past.
Directed by Sidney Myer Creative Fellow, Appiah Annan, Asanti Dance Theatre explores the concept of Sankofa through a raw, intense and exiting approach to dance that draws on traditional West African movement fused with the contemporary influences of Australia.
Featuring incredible international guest artists from Asanti’s sister company in Ghana, combined with some of Australia’s most exciting afro-contemporary dancers and musicians, you will be blown away by the energy, connection to culture and extraordinary talent that these artists present. With undulating torsos, flips through rings of fire, raw energy, exhilarating dance moves and phenomenal acrobatics fused with a combination of live and pre recorded sound, Sankofa beautifully explores the traditional yet universal theme that these artists explore.
Sankofa debuted at the Malthouse Theatre in 2012 to standing ovations, followed by seasons at the Drum Theatre (Dandenong) and Footscray Community Arts Centre (Footscray).
The work has since been redeveloped for touring and will be touring Regional Victoria in 2016.
- Venue Format
- Theatre, Hall, Black Box Venue, Outdoor
- Technical Rating
- Touring Party
- 4 dancers, 2 musicians, 1 artistic director
The show can be adapted to suit a range of different venues including theatres, outdoor stages and town halls. The main thing we require is a stage space no smaller then 8 x 10. The lighting and sound plans can be adapted to work with what the venue has available.
The shows technical elements have been simplified for touring. There will be no more then 50 lighting cues and the artistic director will work closely with your staff to make this an easy process.
The show consists of a mix of live and pre recorded music. There will be 2 musicians who will require a range of microphones and a DI.
Having wowed audiences at a variety of events including Woodford Folk Festival, the Australian Dance Awards, Sydney Opera House, and headlining New Years Eve at Federation Square, Asanti Dance Theatre are Australia’s leading African dance company.
Joined by international guest artists from their company in Ghana, the group specialise in traditional and contemporary African dance, music and acrobatics. The company display an extensive skill set that will leave you speechless. Undulating torsos, flips through rings of fire, raw energy, exhilarating dance moves and phenomenal acrobatics are just some of the elements you can expect from a performance by Asanti Dance Theatre.
Directed by Appiah Annan (Sidney Myer Creative fellow and internationally recognised dancer, choreographer and musician), the company have been working extensively in Melbourne over the past 7 years. With a sister company in Ghana the company have toured regionally, nationally and internationally and perform in a variety of contexts including festivals, schools, corporate, community events and full length theatre works.
- Company Website
Unique Selling Point
Asanti Dance Theatre are Australia’s leading Afro-contemporary Dance Company.
The show features international guest artists touring from Ghana along, with talented Australian company members.
Asanti have worked extensively throughout Australia. They are known for their ability to engage the community, creating a safe and supportive environment for audiences to participate.
Sankofa presents an inspiring new genre created by one of Australia’s most talented culturally and linguistically diverse choreographers.
The work has been well received by audiences of all ages and backgrounds making it a family friendly event for the whole community.
Images Video footage Media Release Merch table will include unique African goods from Ghana (bags, clothing etc).
Post show 'jam'. On conclusion of the show we often run a short interactive session getting the audiences to do simple dance movements, clapping and call and response singing. Its a great way to involve the audience and break the 4th wall.
Pre show busking – we have found this to be a very effective way to engage the local community and build hype around the event.
Drum workshops – These can be implemented in a formal workshop environment or in a communal area (town square, shopping centre etc).
Dance workshops – as above
School incursions. Our most popular school incursion is the Taste of Africa. Its a 2 hour incursion catering for up to 300 students. Students get treated to a 15 min intro & performance, 3 x 30 min workshops in dance, drumming and village activities, 1 x 10 min interactive 'jam' and a Q&A.
The show creates a positive experience of diversity that audiences can connect to and identify with.
Coming from a range of CALD backgrounds our artists are extremely approachable and will happily talk with audiences pre and post show (where possible).