|Dear Sir or Madam,
The premiere of Olhos dAgua, Ismael Ivos new project, on 18 September is a special highlight in the BLACK ATLANTIC autumn programme in the House of World Cultures. This commissioned work is based on research into how African traditions were disseminated in the wake of the transatlantic slave trade.
In exploring the Black Atlantic, Brazilian dancer and choreographer Ismael Ivo draws on the powerful impetus provided by the figure of his great-grandmother, herself born into slavery. The stories she told also helped shape his own identity an experience of oral history underlying the artistic processes in Olhos dagua. The work centres on three key Black female figures, all around 70 years old: the priestess Mãe Beata comes from Bahia, centre of the syncretic religion Candomblé; jazz singer and dancer Othella Dallas was promoted by the renowned dancing teacher Katherine Dunham and, in the course of her long career, appeared with such artists as Josephine Baker and Sammy Davis Jr.; and, finally, actress and director Tereza Santos was a powerful figure in a struggle for freedom taking her from the Brazil of military dictatorship to Angola. The inspiration for this piece comes directly from the enormous power embodied in these three womens vivid and poignant memories. Their stories provide the starting point for the improvisations by the eight dancers and performers Ismael Ivo and Bazilian director Maria Thaìs have brought together from such diverse areas as hip-hop, capoeira, classical and modern dance.
We would like to take this opportunity of inviting you to attend a Photo Shoot at 11 a.m. on Wednesday, 15th September 2004 in the House of World Cultures. Afterwards, Ismael Ivo and his company will be present together with Mãe Beata, Othella Dallas and Tereza Santos to personally answer your questions.
BLACK ATLANTIC is sponsored by the Kulturstiftung des Bundes.
We are looking forward to seeing you.
Press Office, 8.9.2004
If you are able to attend, please confirm by email at firstname.lastname@example.org (giving your name, editorial office and phone/fax number).