Diaspora Digital

From February 8 to 10, 2024, dance enthusiasts, artists, scholars, students and practitioners gathered on the Connecticut College campus for the groundbreaking African Diaspora Dance Summit.

The Summit which included workshops, presentations and a keynote performance from legendary choreographer Ronald K. Brown’s dance group EVIDENCE, was also known as the “Igniting Emancipatory Possibilities through African Diaspora Dance.”

The event drew more than 100 participants to celebrate and explore the richness and diversity of African diaspora dance, delve into its historical and cultural significance, and create a community particularly to envision and embody emancipatory possibilities for the future of African diaspora dance in predominantly white contexts.

The summit was made possible by the Dayton Artist-in-Residence Program, which enables students to encounter and learn from artists and performers who are not typically accessible in an academic setting, giving them the opportunity to explore a wider variety of artistic approaches.

Summit co-organizer and Dance Professor Rachel Boggia, said it was important to get people together to discuss what it means to teach this form of knowledge in a predominantly white space.

Founder of the influential modern dance troupe and Conn’s company-in-residence David Dorfman Dance, said that the Summit was particularly important for Connecticut College, a leader in dance education since the 1940s.

Professor David Dorfman continued by saying that: “we have been working avidly on an anti-racist curriculum that centers African diasporic dance as a source of not only so much of the movement experienced in all dance today, but as the cultural underpinnings of the art form we love so much. The summit was absolutely transformative for our students in and around our incredible dance department here at Conn.”

Participants also expressed their thoughts on the impact of the Summit.

To see more pictures and details of the Summit, kindly visit the Connecticut College website.

Source: Connecticut College

Edited by: Theresa R. Fianko

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