Black@Intersection Art Exhibit Nov 2021
KnowBOX Film Festival Dec 2021
Black Lives Rising Dance Festival Dec 2021
2022 Denton Black Film Festival (DBFF)
Tamara Williams engaged in a collaborative endeavor with esteemed dance artists, community activists, and scholars, namely Cara Hagan from Boone, North Carolina, Paloma McGregor from New York, NY, and Ananya Chatterjea from Minneapolis, MN. Together with poet Jacinta V. White from Winston-Salem, NC, and dramaturg Sharon Bridgforth from Los Angeles, CA, they orchestrated the creation of a compendium comprising of short dance films, poetry, and ritualistic practices. This multifaceted artistic endeavor was carefully crafted to explore and express various dimensions of human experience.
The premiere of these remarkable dance works took place virtually on Saturday, June 19th, a date symbolically associated with Juneteenth, a significant milestone commemorating the emancipation of enslaved African Americans in the United States.
It is worth noting that the National Center for Choreography commissioned these compelling dance works, recognizing the artistic merit and profound societal resonance they possess. Additionally, Williams was awarded an additional grant from the Filmed in NC Fund, an initiative supported by Cucalorus, further endorsing the significance and excellence of her contributions to the field of dance and film.
Bianca Medina is a Boricua-Mexicana Dance Artist, Teaching Artist, and Choreographer based in Brooklyn. She spent 2015-2020 touring on stages across the world with Los Angeles based dance companies CONTRA-TIEMPO Activist Dance Theatre, Viver Brasil Dance Company, and with choreographer Marina Magalhães. Medina continues to lead community based dance workshops and residencies. She has served as guest faculty for universities like, University of Wisconsin Milwaukee, Sacramento State University, and North Carolina State University. Using her deep understanding of Modern Release technique and Afro-Latin Diasporic traditions, Medina explores how the body, in all its shifting political and cultural dimensions, serves as a vessel for contemporary storytelling. Through her choreography, she frames tradition as an ever-evolving practice that lives infinitely within our bodies and spirits. Her latest choreographic work has been shown in IATI Theatre’s Tertulia. Medina holds a B.F.A in Dance from the University of Iowa.
The film premieres on Juneteenth at 3pm. Click HERE to view the archive.
ÌBÀ OBÌNRIN serves as a reverential exploration of the profound significance and far-reaching influences of women in the traditions prevalent in the southern region of the United States and across global contexts. This captivating film endeavors to illuminate the historical and customary practices through which women have forged a deep connection with nature, thereby fostering strength and resilience within their communities.
The core essence of ÌBÀ OBÌNRIN lies in its meticulous inquiry into the interplay of ritual, nature, and location within the traditional practices employed by Black women to nurture and uplift their communities. Spanning a duration of 30 minutes, the film seamlessly integrates the artistic prowess of four dancers, deftly guiding the audience through a transformative journey of embodied movements and poignant scenarios. Through these evocative portrayals, the narrative unfolds, revealing the intrinsic role of water as a healing agent, the purifying properties bestowed upon earthly elements, and the transformative potential harnessed from the power of wind within the sacred traditions cherished by Black women in the southern region.
The filming of ÌBÀ OBÌNRIN took place across three distinct and significant locations in Charlotte, NC, each carrying its own symbolic resonance. The awe-inspiring settings included the hallowed grounds of the Catawba River, the serene expanse of the Big Rock Nature Preserve, and the enchanting ambiance of McAlpine Creek. It is within these evocative landscapes that the film breathes life into the intricate tapestry of cultural practices, infusing the visual narrative with a profound sense of place and belonging.
Furthermore, the film is further enhanced by the inclusion of traditional songs and spirituals that resonate with the intrinsic power embodied by water within nature, as well as Yorùbá songs that establish a profound connection between women and the life-giving essence of fresh waters. This harmonious blend of sonic elements lends a heightened sense of depth and spirituality to the artistic tapestry woven within ÌBÀ OBÌNRIN, enlivening the film with a resonant and transcendent quality.
Moving Spirits artist Kendra J. Ross and invited guests Bianca Medina and Sade Adona perform in the dance film, Ìbà Obìnrin with Tamara. The company collaborated with cinematographer, Marlon Morrison in the production of the work.
Kendra J. Ross is a proud Detroit native working as a dancer, choreographer, facilitator and community organizer in Bed-Stuy, Brooklyn. As a dancer in New York City, Kendra has worked with Urban Bush Women, Andrea E. Woods/Souloworks, Ase Dance Theater Collective, Monstah Black/ Motion Sickness, MBDance, Moving Spirits Dance Company, RAKIA!, Melanie Green and as a guest artist with Oyu Oro. Kendra also completed a European tour dancing with Adira Amram and DJ Kid Koala in Vinyl Vaudeville 2.0 and performed with Gyptian at the MTV Iggy awards. Kendra is currently a company member of Movement of the People Dance Company. Kendra’s choreographic work has been presented at the Florida A&M University, the off Broadway show 7 Sins, Museu de Arte in Salvador, Brazil, Detroit Performing Arts High School, Joffrey Summer Intensive, Dixon Place, Ailey Citigroup Theater, Actors Fund Theater. She has been an Artist in Residence at Brooklyn Studios for Dance, Bates College, and The Neighborhood Project Through 651Arts, a BAX Space Grantee, and a Visiting Artist at Atlantic Center for the Arts. Along with sharing her art world-wide, Kendra serves as the Founder/Director of STooPS, an outdoors-based community building event that uses art as a catalyst to strengthen ties between different entities in Bed-Stuy. www.thekendrajross.comraph here.
Sade Ifaloba Oyaniiyun Olatutu Monique Adona (Iyanifa and Iyalorisa Oloya) is presently living on Lenape territory. She is the child of engineers, pastors, seamstresses, and share croppers. Sade utilizes the mediums of dance and music to bring full sensory healing experience of “the urban indigenous intersection”. Her passions are telling the stories of the ancestors and the living, through the lens of ancient and contemporary culture. Sade has danced the Àṣẹ Dance Theatre Collective and is a member of Moving Spirits, Inc.
Copyright 2013. Tamara LaDonna Moving Spirits, Inc. All Rights Reserved.