Graffiti and The Dance of Power Relations From its beginning almost 40 years ago, Hip-Hop culture has had afrofuturist tendencies, from costumes and sounds of artists like Afrika Bambaataa and Ramellzee to later Missy Elliot and her videos with Hype Williams; to the hacking of street lamps to power sounds systems and other innovative rewiring […]Read More Modern Griots Reviews: Renegade Performance Group’s “The Inscription Project”
“The booty don’t lie” – Janelle Monae and Erykah Badu’s “Q.U.E.E.N.” “I’m wigglin’ my fanny, I’m raunchy dancing, I’m-a-doing it doing it” – Betty Davis’ “If I’m in Luck I Might Just Get Picked Up” “Free yaself gal, you got class and you got pride Come together cuz we strong and unified… Show it off […]Read More The My-Stery: Dance Apocalyptic By Shaking Your Groove Thing!
Enjoy these two videos that I recently saw that include themes about earth and nature from a speculative fiction angle. Also, take a look at Outdoor Afro, a social community encouraging the exploration of nature. Book video for Octavia Butler’s Parable of the Sower and Parable of the Talents Nature SuperHero Heal our World Heal […]Read More Happy Earth Day!
As Ebony celebrated Katherine Dunham, Nick Cave was featuring dozens of Alvin Ailey dancers wearing 30 colorful horse “soundsuits” in his public performance piece at Grand Central station, HEARD•NY. Presented by Creative Time and MTA Arts, the 30 minute performances included a grazing pastoral music and dance sequence followed by a rhythmic choreographed dance, “crossings” […]Read More Modern Griots Reviews: Nick Cave’s Magical Horses in Heard.NY
If you can keep dancing especially when no one thought you would survive, then you have traveled to a region beyond death. Last weekend, Movement for the Urban Village‘s (MUV) Sankofa performance showed how our expressions (dance, music, words, names and silence) transcend boundaries and even death. As George Clinton says in “Mothership Connection,” “You […]Read More Modern Griots Review: MUV’s “Sankofa”
Tanya Evanson‘s video poem, “Almost Forgot My Bones.” Evanson is an Antiguan-Quebecoise poet, vocalist, whirling dervish dancer, arts educator and director of Mother Tongue Media and The Banff Centre Spoken Word Program. Her work is featured in such works as her six chapbooks, three studio albums, anthologies and documentaries, Generation Exile and In Search of […]Read More Otherworldy Videos: Tanya Evanson
*For those who will be in Missouri, one of my supporters, Reynaldo Anderson will be having a talk at Missouri History Museum on February 1st, called Afrofuturism: Race, Art and Politics in the Age of Digital Reproduction. Hopefully, the conversation will be recorded and the rest of us can listen to it later. *The filmmakers […]Read More Moving on the Wires: Afrofuturism Talk, The United States of Hoodoo, MUV’s Sankofa, Buli…
Will you make it to the other side? It’s amazing how many aspects of my culture and other cultures, too, are either hidden or diluted. One, for example, is the limbo dance that originated in Trinidad and Tobago. For many, it is only a fun dance game in which you try to pass under a […]Read More Basic Instructions Before Leaving Earth: Limbo by Edward Kamau Brathwaite
After attending the Oya and Anyanwu program on Wednesday, I did a search on the Anyanwu from Wildseed and came across a dance performance, called Octavia. Dancer Staycee Pearl choreographed this project and presented it last year. It is a tribute and exploration of Octavia Butler’s work and life, bringing her magical and sci-fi literature […]Read More I Could Dance, Dance, Dance All Night: Octavia
Without stories, we are nothing but shells, only giving others the physical form of ourselves. Stories ground the spirits and forces around us and make them real. Oya priestess Isoke Nia expressed this sentiment last night at the Schomburg Center in Harlem at the enlightening tribute to the Yoruba orisha, Oya, and writer Octavia Butler. […]Read More Modern Griots Review: Oya and Anyanwu — The Faces of Change