VIDEO: Post-election Violence Period Turned Into a Contemporary Dance Piece

Friday, 11 January 2013 16:26 , Written by 

Five years after the Kenya post-election crisis of 2007/2008, new presidential elections are set for March 2013. The contemporary dance production TRIP en masse Kenya aims to give a cultural reflection on the tragic events five years ago, in which approximately 1,500 Kenyans lost their lives.

In 2011 TRIP en masse won the Swan award for best Dutch dance production. The jury described the dance piece as "An overwhelming dance performance that is at the same time hypnotizing, fascinating and frightening. The movements consist of familiar images of mass-hysteria and fanaticism: clenched fists, arms crying for help, hands that reach for the head or imaginary wounds. These are images we know from TV news: conflict, football stadiums and mass protests. On stage these are magnified and repeated endlessly."

This month, the three choreographers of TRIP en masse, the White Horse collective, are in Kenya to work with nine Kenyan dancers in Nairobi to adapt TRIP en masse and incorporate elements of the Kenya post-election crisis, resulting in a non-political dance show called TRIP en mass Kenya.

The contemporary dance show is staged at various venues in Nairobi (including shows for youth from the slums) and Naivasha, a city that was severely affected by the post-election crisis. The show and Q&A session afterwards aim to provide reflection on the tragic events that took place and contribute to promoting peace and reconciliation between different communities in Kenya.

Here's the troupe's schedule:

Wednesday, 16th January: Gala Premiere at Sarakasi Dome - 7:00 p.m.
Thursday, 17th January: Sarakasi Dome - 7:00 p.m.
Saturday, 19th January: Fisherman’s Camp, Naivasha, 7:00 p.m.

TRIP en masse Kenya is a collaboration between the Sarakasi Trust and Dansgroep Amsterdam. The project is supported by the Netherlands Embassy in Kenya, Tejchevé Foundation and the Performing Arts Fund NL (Netherlands). Check out the troupe's video below.

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