24.06—01.07.18

Ashanti Harris

The movement narratives of colonialism and post-colonialism have led to the evolution of hybrid dance and movement practices which, through the transformational aspects embedded in the movement as well as the embodiment of cultural/inter-cultural identities, function as a living archive of these diasporic narratives, re-contextualised within the present, live body performing them. My research explores the presence of these movement narratives within the work of Les Ballets Negres (1946-1952), also known as the first black British dance company. Working with re-imagining and re-presentation as a performative method, this research explores the transformational, "survival strategies" applied by Les Ballets Negres, and seeks to understand how engaging with the work of this pioneering company can contribute to a greater understanding of the role of West African and Caribbean diasporic culture within Britain’s diverse cultural heritage.

 For the duration of the residency I will be collaborating with choreographer Erick Mauricia Valentin with support from musician Paul Shofolahan.

There will be a sharing of work at 1pm on Sunday 1 July in The Work Room.