Skip to main content

Dub Theatre: d'bi.young's Sankofa Trilogy in Toronto to December 4

From a media release:

the sankofa trilogy
written and performed by d'bi.young anitafrika
October 22 to December 4, 2011

at the Tarragon Theatre, Toronto

featuring word!sound!powah!
in repertory with blood.claat, and benu
Trilogy Premiere

word! sound! powah! (part three of the trilogy)

yuh tink you can stop the people?
my granny told me about you.
she prepared me for you.

A storyteller emerges from the darkness. She sings the story of her people, beginning with their hope-filled birth to their decline into destruction and despair. She implores them to wake from their slumber, remember themselves, and return to the land they love.

As she finishes her song, we suddenly find ourselves in a police interrogation room in 1980s Kingston, Jamaica. The brutal Constable Brown relentlessly interrogates a young woman named Benu. He suspects that she is an accomplice in a heinous politically-motivated crime - but he has no proof. All he knows is that Jamaica is in the midst of a tense and hotly contested election campaign that has cost many politicians and supporters their lives, and it's his job to find the culprits.

In word!sound!powah! young dub poet Benu Sankofa is swept up in the violence of the infamous 1980 national election in Jamaica. The country is on the cusp of a political coup, and in the heat of the struggle between young radicals and the establishment, Benu is arrested. She finds strength in her maternal ancestors to fight for the freedom she believes in.

blood.claat (part one of the trilogy)

mugdu sankofa, a fifteen-year-old girl from Kingston, Jamaica, begins her journey into womanhood under the watchful gaze of her granny. With her mother gone to Canada, Mugdu chafes against the limitations imposed on her by her grandmother's generation - even as she looks to her ancestors for strength. Like her mother and grandmother before her, mugdu attempts to embrace her femininity as she navigates the perennial danger that plagues the young women in her family: pregnancy. blood.claat received two Dora awards in 2006.

benu (part two of the trilogy)
mugdu's daughter sekesu a new mother. Painful memories of her upbringing - her separation from her mother - surface with the pregnancy and birth, and collide with her expectations of motherhood. Can she be the mother she never had? There is hope in her daughter, benu, named after the mythical Egyptian predecessor of the phoenix, which rises from its ashes.

d'bi.young anitafrika is an internationally celebrated afrikan-jamaican-canadian dubpoet, performer and educator. The published author of two collections of poetry, six plays and six dubpoetry albums resides in Cape Town, where she is Curator of Badilisha Poetry and of the Pan Afrikan Performing Arts Institute.

about the trilogy
blood.claat will be performed on Nov 23, Nov 26 (mat), Nov 27, and Dec 3 (mat).
benu will be performed on
Nov 29, Dec 1 and Dec 3 (eve).
word! sound! powah! is performed at all other times

70 minutes with no intermission.
sensitivity warning: incense is burned during the performance.

written and performed by
d'bi.young anitafrika
set and costume design by Camellia Koo
lighting design by Michelle Ramsay
musical direction by Waleed Abdulhamid
musicians: Jeff Burke, Kurt Huggins and Laurence Stevenson

From her latest CD:

Comments

What Else Is Hot This Week?

Cuba Re-Opens To International Tourism

From a media release:Cuba Re-Opens To International Tourism
October 2020Cuba adapts to the “new normal” and announces the re-opening of international tourism in most of the country.After controlling the pandemic, local authorities announced the country is embracing a “new normal” for most of the country’s provinces except: Havana, Ciego de Avila and Sancti Spiritus (Which still have some cases of local transmission).All international airports are already open, except Havana Airport, which will remain limited to humanitarian and cargo flights for the time being, and Cayo Coco airport, open only for tourism due to the current situation in the province of Ciego de Avila.The Minister of tourism, Mr. Juan Carlos Garcia Granda, said that “air only” passengers will be able to enter the country through all the open airports, with the exception of Cayo Coco Airport, which will continue to work as before (Holiday package: air and hotel).The Minister noted that foreign tourists will be able to st…

Jazzy Pop: Shihori - Soul Trip (Independent / 4 September 2020)

Jazzy Pop:
Shihori - Soul Trip
(Independent / 4 September 2020)New York City based singer and songwriter Shihori's new single Soul Trip is atmospheric and ambient. Interesting rhythms and interwoven melodic vocal lines showcase jazzy harmonic progressions in a slow groove mode. 
As a songwriter, she uses electronic effects with impeccable musical taste. As a singer, her flexible vocals range from a sweet soprano to a strong mid-range.A veteran of the Japanese pop scene, Shihori moved to New York City in 2018, a move she talks about in a media release."I was so surprised when I came to NY for the first time. Independent and strong women are respected and there are lots of different preferences in music and style. I thought, 'oh my God! This place really accepts uniqueness and freedom! I didn't know there is a place like this totally different world that allows you to be yourself. Everybody looks so different. So many races, colors, cultures, fashion, ideas...I am so happy…

FACTORY presents World Premiere ACTS OF FAITH November 19 to 28 2020 - Free Livestream

From a media release:World Premiere
FACTORY presents 
ACTS OF FAITHby David Yee
Directed by Nina Lee Aquino
Starring Natasha Mumba
November 19 – 28, 2020 @ 7:30PM
Streamed live for 6 performances
Free of charge
TORONTO (October 19, 2020) - To kick off its groundbreaking 2020/21 season, Factory presents the world premiere of acts of faith, by multi-award winning Asian Canadian playwright David Yee, directed by Nina Lee Aquino, and starring Natasha Mumba. Written specifically to be performed for a digital platform, acts of faith will stream live to audiences at home for six performances, November 19-28, 2020. 
Thanks to the generous support of the TD Bank Group, admission is being offered entirely free of charge to audiences across the country and beyond.acts of faith tells a story about the power of faith, the inescapable persistence of our online identities, and the nature of truth in a digital age. The story follows Faith, a young woman who gets mistaken for a prophet. When a questionable r…

Alt Country | Doc Straw & the Scarecrows: Get on By (Independent / July 31, 2020)

Alt Country
Doc Straw & the Scarecrows: Get on By
(Independent / July 31, 2020)Stream it on SpotifyClever lyrics that tell a story and an appealing acoustic bounce give the new single by Doc Straw & the Scarecrows a classic modern folk vibe. The vocal harmonies are pleasing and the words are an upbeat ode to persevering during tough times.
It's a timely message, and Doc talked about it in a release."I wrote this song after getting off of a 3-hour long phone conversation with my sister, Jessica, and a lot of our conversation that evening  centered around some of the tougher things in life and how we were dealing with these struggles. If a person lives long enough then at some point they will experience these trying seasons. I've learned that it's important to pay attention during those times because that is when we have some of the best opportunities to grow."It has a nicely haunting harmonica line and builds to an emotional peak. Virginia based Mike Straw is…

Vancouver Art Gallery Fall Exhibitions | Victor Vasarely, Op Art in Vancouver & Uncommon Language October 17, 2020 to April 5, 2021

From a media release:Vancouver Art Gallery New Fall Exhibitions
Victor Vasarely, Op Art in Vancouver & Uncommon Language
October 17, 2020 to April 5, 2021To book tickets: Visit vanartgallery.bc.caOctober 17, 2020, Vancouver, BC – This fall, the Vancouver Art Gallery presents Victor Vasarely, a selected survey of paintings, sculptures and prints by the Hungarian-French artist Victor Vasarely (1906–1997), internationally renowned for his colourful abstract patterns and playful, and visually engaging aesthetic.  Victor Vasarely, OERVENG, 1968, tempera on wood composite board, Collection of the Vancouver Art Gallery, Gift of the Estate of Kathleen E. Reif, Estate of Victor Vasarely/SOCAN (2020), Photo: Ian Lefebvre, Vancouver Art Gallery The exhibition focuses on his artistic production from the 1960s and 70s, at the height of his popularity. With the most extensive collection of Vasarely artworks in Canada, the Gallery offers a unique opportunity for the public to discover this influenti…