Trinidadian Choreographer Makeda Thomas To Join Hugely Popular ‘This Woman’s Work’
July 7, 2007
New York/Trinidad choreographer and artistic director, Makeda Thomas, is known internationally for her rich dances that cross boundaries between contemporary modern and traditional dance. In the 3rd Annual This Woman’s Work: A Choreographic Project Representing Women of Color at Harlem Stage in September, she unleashes her wide-ranging creativity in a re-envisioning of her acclaimed work, A Sense of Place. This Woman’s Work, acknowledged as Dance Magazine’s ‘25 To Watch’, enjoyed previous sold-out engagements at the Alvin Ailey Citigroup Theater and D.C.’s Howard University. This year’s This Woman’s Work comes to Aaron Davis Hall on Friday, September 7 and Saturday, September 8, at 7:30pm.
Hailed as “delivering gestures you can feel in your gut and heavenly dancing you want to watch forever” by The Village Voice, A Sense of Place is based on conversations with 40 women living with HIV/AIDS. Thomas spent 3 months in Mozambique, Africa in 2005. With Graca Machel (Former First Lady of South Africa and Mozambique) as the Honorary Patron – she premiered her work on World AIDS Day to a packed audience at Maputo’s Teatro Africa. A Sense of Place was televised to over 200,000, and since presented at the Brooklyn Academy of Music, Niagara Falls Performing Arts Center and 1st Conference on New Perspectives in African Performing & Visual Arts. The Port of Spain performance at CCA7 was called “revolutionary” by The Trinidad Guardian’s Attillah Springer.
“A Sense of Place embodies the ideas upon which This Woman’s Work was founded,” Thomas says. She joins a cast that make up seven of the most influential, professional, performer-choreographers in contemporary dance: Camille Brown, Bridget Moore, Shani Collins, Princess Mhoon Cooper, Ursula Payne and Francine Ott. During the opening highlight solos, (featuring a special guest appearance from Shel Riser, – better known as ‘Sonnyboy’) Makeda will preview movement from her highly anticipated upcoming solo Fresh Water.
Makeda Thomas performed internationally in the companies of Urban Bush Women, Ronald K. Brown/EVIDENCE and Rennie Harris/Puremovement. Since 2004, in addition to creating work for her company – Roots & Wings Movement! – she has made work as Resident Choreographer of Companhia Nacional De Canto e Danca. She has received awards from the U.S. Embassy and NYS Council on the Arts among others, and was distinguished as a 2005 Cultural Envoy for the U.S. Department of State. Makeda is deeply committed to creating dance works through cross-disciplinary collaboration and to connecting to “an elemental movement expression linked with the study of history, cultural anthropology, and spirituality.”
She divides her time – in between performing internationally – living in Brooklyn, NY and Trinidad.
Tickets for This Woman’s Work featuring performances of A Sense of Place on Friday, September 7 and Saturday, September 8 at 7:30pm are $25 and $15. HARLEM Stage at Aaron Davis Hall is located at The City College of New York, 150 Convent Avenue at West 135th Street New York, New York 10031.