Some people’s work inspire movements, some save lives, some remind us that we are essential and provide balm to our wounded spirit, and some make us strong and fierce, Womanist scholar Rev. Dr. Katie Geneva Cannon‘s life and work did all this and more!!! Rest In Peace!!!
DSA 2018 in Malta: Contra: Dance & Conflict hosted by the University of Malta, July 5 – 8: I happily delivered my paper Dance: African Diaspora Transforming Christian Spiritual Landscape, chaired the session West African Dance & Critical Multiculturalism in Pedagogy, met new collaborates and former colleagues, and marveled at beautiful breathtaking Malta!
There is a Black Arts Movement on the way in Antwerp, Belgium at Zomerfabriek Mama’s Open Mic. Recently I had the opportunity to witness young Black Belgians women read poetry and prose from their toolbox for survival and flourishing in a sexist and racist society. Although my digital notepad failed and I no longer have their names I want to send out good vibes to this community of poets and musicians.
Some years ago (no need to mention how many), I began a journey with the explicit translation of text to movement/dance. If I am being honest, my choreographic process, for as far back as I can remember, always began with the translation of the images in my head and/or sensations in my body to text. I would then, through numerous studio sessions, translate the text to movement/dance and in the process sculpt out the essence of a story. It is for this reason, I have journal loads of choreo-text, some became fully realized dance works, while others await their dance life.
My collaboration with Joanne Kilgour Dowdy began in the latter years of the 1990s when we were both based at Georgia State University. In that first collaboration we translated her PhD dissertation to dance. During subsequent years we collaborated on other projects, one of which was Carmen Montana: a story of literacy on the move. Base on the true story of an adult literacy student’s struggle to gain literacy and self actualize, the making of Carmen Montana took Dowdy and I on our own powerful journey. On this video the then Dr. Dowdy, now Professor of Literacy Studies School of Teaching, Learning and Curriculum Studies at Kent State University, Ohio, interviews me about the rehearsal process of Carmen Montana: a story of literacy on the move.
May 17, 2018 Interview on WBAI with host, Wuyi Jacobs of AfroBeat. Halifu Osumare and Ntozake Shange in conversation about Osumare’s Dancing in Blackness, A Memoir and Shange’s Wild Beauty: New and Selected Poems
May 17, 2018 Roosevelt House Public Policy Institute Phenomenal Women Series: Halifu Osumare reading from Dancing in Blackness, A Memoirand Ntozake Shange reading from Wild Beauty, New and Selected Poems, and Osumare and Shange in Conversation!!
May 17, 2018 Halifu Osumare at The JODY Center for Dance Research at Arnhold Graduate Dance Education Program Hunter College Dance Program. Funding was made available for the program for the purchase twenty-five copies of Dancing in Blackness, A Memoir for each student in the graduate dance education program to have their own personal copy!! Halifu Osumare signed each copy!
May 18, 2018 at Gavin Brown Enterprise, Harlem location, I introduced Ruthlyn Salomons in conversation with Halifu Osumare about Dancing in Blackness, A Memoir
May 21, 2018 at Greenlight Bookstore – Prospect Lefferts Gardens. Halifu Osumare with Jawole Zollar in conversation about their mutual journey as professional dance artist and social activist and points at which their lives intersected. Awesome close to the NYC tour Dancing in Blackness, A Memoir!
Halifu Osumare’s Dancing in Blackness, A Memoir NYC Book tour came to a close on May 21, 2018 at Greenlight Books. Halifu Osumare was in conversation with Jawole Willa Jo Zollar, Founder and Chief Visionary of Urban Bush Women. … Continue reading →
Halifu Osumare in conversation with Ruthlyn Salomons, Resident Dance Supervisor at Lion King On Broadway, former dancer with the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater, Mikhail Baryshnikov White Oak Dance Project, Donald Byrd/The Group and Assistant to the Choreographer of The Color Purple on Broadway. At Gavin Brown, Osumare and Salomons discussed Dancing in Blackness, A Memoir.
Halifu Osumare and Ntozake Shange interviewed by Wuyi Jacobs, host of Afrobeat, on WBAI.
The reading at the Roosevelt House Public Policy Institute at Hunter College. Osumare read from Dancing in Blackness, A Memoir and Shange read from Wild Beauty: New and Selected Poems; they then engaged in stirring conversation.
Halifu Osumare inaugural speaker at The Jody, the new dance research center at Hunter College, Arnhold Graduate Dance Education Program.