Art Moves Africa: the Mobility Fund of Artists & Cultural Operators within Africa

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Grantee on the road: Kiki Cheptoo Ng'ok

Kenya-based AMA grantee Kiki Cheptoo Ng'ok hits the road today for a 4-week stay in Ghana, where she will be conducting research on traditional and popular dance.

Kiki Ng'ok is a dancer, choreographer, educator and the founder of KumbuKumbu African Art and Theatre and Urbana Africana Dance Company. Her passion for dance lies in understanding how the body is used for self-expression as well as communication about the realities we face in an increasingly complex world. Her previous work as a choreographer includes Awakenings (2009) and Afro-Galactica: Journey into African Dance (2011). She has performed at Gallery Watatu, Kenya National Theatre, the Zanzibar Film Festival (2005), and has participated in workshops in the U.S., U.K. and Senegal. She was awarded an AMA grant in 2008 to participate in Engagement féminin, a dance workshop organized by L'Art Dév/Compagnie Auguste-Bienvenue.

Ms Ng'ok’s research will go towards a project titled Dance in Ghana: Ritual and Catharsis, which aims to understand the historical and cultural significance of dance in Ghanaian communities. She will spend 3 weeks in Accra and one week in the north of Ghana. She will attend and observe a wide variety of dance events, ranging from impromptu street performances to staged performances in schools and at weddings, baptisms and funerals. Of particular interest to Ms Ngog are the ways in which dance serves communities. Does dance in Ghana function as a public art form? What facilitates engagement in dance and what are the differences between dance performances taking part on the street, versus a staged performance? Who participates? Who is the audience? Do they blend in to each other? Is dance merely ritual or does it serve as catharsis in Ghana? These are some of the questions she will be asking.

AMA wishes Kiki all the best for her travels and her research!

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