#BBOnFIlm presents 'Like Water'
In honour of Black History Month UK, we are delighted to share our award-winning film, Like Water, free of charge from 18th – 31st October
LIKE WATER acknowledges the resilience of our ancestors, passed down from generation to generation. A world unkind to our people, yet somehow we survive. A world that that has conditioned us to not see the beauty of our skin, hair, culture and our people. But like water we flow, like water we change shape. We remain resilient.
Concept, Choreography & Direction by Mthuthuzeli November
Director of Photography & Edited by Nauris Buksevics
Written by Asisipho Malunga, narration by Mthuthuzeli November
Composed & Performed by Georgina Lloyd-Owen
Company Dancers: José Alves, Isabela Coracy, Alexander Fadayiro, Marie Astrid Mence & Ebony Thomas
Read the Opening Narration
Mntana we langa (Children of the sun)
Camagu (Gratitude) awusemhle mntanedlozi. (you are beautiful)
You who walks with the ancients, the ones who walked before, before and before was a thing. Radiant, proud, magnificent adorned by the sun. Surely there has been no greater love. A love that lights you up from the inside langa.
There are those that are envious of that very light. You see it in their admonishing glooms and glares as you walk by proud, head up to the most high. The very embodiment of the kings who came before, before and before was a thing.
How dare the child of a former slave be so brave. How dare you be so black, so proud. I say how dare you not.
Read the Closing Narration
The spirits of the water have seen a great many things. They have seen a people, captured, abducted and sold over the centuries only to be bought and sold again.
She has borne witness to lifeless bodies washed up, drowned on the shore, no compass to direct them home, the only connection with home being the ocean herself. Does she grieve for the lives lost journeying between her seas? Mothers, brothers, sisters. Others separated by you…others reunited in spite of you.
So again we meet at the water’s shore. This time for healing, for cleansing, for forgiveness. In honour of those who have come before and in honour of ourselves. We too are always moving forward as a people as her people. We have learned the spirit of resilience, of carrying others more than we carry ourselves. We give birth to new heartaches at the start of each new moon. The heartbreak that colours our skin. A colourful swearword in today’s day.
In the wake of the most recent Black Lives Matter movement, I wondered how Ballet Black should react to the apparent shift in global thinking about race, inclusion and equity. My overriding feeling was one of exhaustion; micro aggressions, persecution, death – it felt endless. I wanted to see the passionate, joyful aspects of our diverse existence brought to the fore, not just the tragic. Blackness it is not a singular experience: we do not all share the same background, beliefs, trauma or skin colour. I felt compelled to respond by showcasing the multifaceted aspects of joyous human emotion, and also the incredible artistic power of Ballet Black, an organisation that has been championing positive change for Black and Asian dancers for almost twenty years. – Cassa Pancho MBE – Founder & Artistic Director
Join us on October 29th & 30th, 2021 at the iconic Coronet Theatre in London’s Notting Hill for our film screening debut, Eightfold, a film unprecedented in its radical use of light, film and drone technology with some of the most diverse and exciting choreographic talent from around the world and performed by the multi-award winning Ballet Black. Featuring narration written by Natasha Gordon and voiced by Ballet Black’s Patron, Thandiwe Newton, Eightfold is an extraordinary dance film created at an extraordinary time.
Both film screenings will feature a post-show discussion with Ballet Black Artistic Director, Cassa Pancho, and several members of the artistic team.
Screening Format: As the theatre is no longer a cinema the film will be screened via projection onto a large 4.4m x 2.5m screen assembled on the stage.
Performance Concept & Creative Direction
Film Concept & Director
Johann Sebastian Bach, Luigi Boccherini, Nicholas Hewlett, Kabantu, Bill Laurance, Nina Simone, Antonia Vivaldi & Lih Qun Wong
STRENGTH: Hope Boykin (Hope Boykin Dance, USA)
COURAGE: Monique Jonas (Jona Dance Company, UK)
PASSION: Mlindi Kulashe (Leading Soloist, Northern Ballet, UK)
JOY: Sophie Laplane (Artist-in-Residence, Scottish Ballet)
LOVE: Peter Leung (Young Creative Associate, Dutch National Ballet)
HOPE: Gregory Maqoma (Vuyani Dance Theatre, South Africa)
RAGE: Joy Alpuerto Ritter (independent artist, Germany)
POWER: Joseph Sissens (First Artist, The Royal Ballet, UK)