© Aboubacar Mané (Collectif Kaïra)


Aboubacar Mané (Collectif KAÏRA)

November 14 to 28, 2007

November 14 to 28, 2007

Accompanied by the dancers of the KAÏRA Collective, the choreographer/dancer Aboubacar Mané unveils Djahilya, a piece blending African ballet and contemporary dance.

Featured as one of the five Montreal-based choreographers in the MAI’s 2007-2008 Dance Series, Mané’s choreography is distinguished by a hybrid dance vocabulary and movement strongly rooted in the ground.

In Djahilya, gravity pulls at four bodies suffering from the knowledge of their wrongdoings committed under the influences of ignorance and fear. Overwhelmed by the heavy burden they now are forced to carry, this errant quartet desperately attempts to find escape through dance, accompanied by the heavy beat of drums. As they battle their shadows, the ground—which ought to echo with the guiding voices of their ancestors—stays silent, and the lost souls’ only consolation is the soothing music of the kora.

The title of this piece takes its name from the Koranic term for the pre-Islamic historical period, a time when war and conflict abounded. Like a contemporary griot, Aboubacar Mané, calls for an individual and collective awareness about the far-reaching consequences of our action and lust for power.

Mané’s work is inspired by the Mandigo tradition he has inherited. While preserving this rich heritage within his choreography, his creations are equally influenced by a wide range of styles, from modern dance to break dance, by way of capoeira and afro-jazz.

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