World Premiere Opens 10th Season at Red Clay
Red Clay Dance Company (RCDC), which creates and performs a diverse repertoire of Afro-contemporary dance, opens its 10th anniversary season with a world premiere, part of a multi-year collaboration with Uganda's Keiga Dance Company, November 8-10 at 7:30 p.m. at the Dance Center of Columbia College Chicago, 1306 S. Michigan Ave., Chicago.
EKILI MUNDA|What Lies Within, choreographed by Vershawn Sanders-Ward, founder and artistic director of RCDC, and Jonas Byaruhanga, founder and director of Keiga Dance Company in Kampala, Uganda, is an evening-length work that seeks to unearth the cultural history and knowledge around identity that is archived in the body and the unapologetic liberation of this knowledge. EKILI MUNDA|What Lies Withinrepresents an important accomplishment of the TransAtlantic Project, a long-term cultural exchange between the two internationally recognized dance companies. Chicago choreographer Sanders-Ward met Uganda-based Byaruhanga in 2007, and the two artists have been in dialogue ever since. EKILI MUNDA|What Lies Within positions the body as a physical, spiritual and social archive of cultural history that subconsciously informs personal identity.
Red Clay Dance Company lives to awaken "glocal" change through creating, performing, and teaching dances of the African Diaspora-change that transforms cultural and socioeconomic imbalances in our local and global community. Founder Vershawn Sanders-Ward conceived the idea of RCDC while on her first trip to Senegal, West Africa, when she became fascinated by the interconnectedness of dance and everyday life. The name Red Clay comes from her childhood memories of playing in red earth during her summers in Mobile, Alabama.
RCDC's 10th anniversary season is supported by the Chicago Community Trust, the Field Foundation, the MacArthur Fund for Arts and Culture at the Richard H Driehaus Foundation, the Gaylord and Dorothy Donnelley Foundation, the Springboard Foundation, the Polk Bros. Foundation, the Illinois Humanities Council, and the Illinois Arts Council Agency. The creation of EKILI MUNDA |What Lies Within is supported by the International Connections Fund at the MacArthur Foundation.
The 10th Anniversary Season Host Committee includes Ebony Ambrose, Jessica Bell, Amy Clark*, Leslie Guy, Tam Herbert*, Kesha Jackson*, Jada Russell, Brea Sanders, Marilyn A. Sanders, and Ira Staples (* denotes RCDC board member).
Performance tickets are $30, $24 for seniors and $10 for students;
admission to the November 10 performance and post-show
Tukwaniriza fundraiser reception is $100.
Tickets are available at 312-369-8330 or dance.colum.edu.
Photo of EKILI MUNDA|What Lies Within by Mbogo Moses:
(L-R) Michael Kaddu, Robert Ssempijja, Destine Young, and Chaniece Holmes.
Middle: Samuel Ibanda and Marceia Scruggs.