FROM THE APARTHEID MUSEUM TO THE BABS ASPER THEATRE, NAC DANCE PRESENTS BROKEN CHORD
Relive the historical and long-forgotten tour of The African Native Choir through dance, music, and song
February 22, 2023 – OTTAWA, Canada – On March 1-2, Ottawa dance lovers will be in for a treat as the NAC welcomes renowned South African choreographer Gregory Maqoma and composer Thutuka Sibisi. Storytelling is at the core of Broken Chord, a show about the first South African choir that visited Europe, the United States and Canada in the late 1800s.
“Gregory Maqoma wears so many hats: he is a remarkable performer, choreographer, creative director, teacher and producer, and by extension, an inspiration for hundreds of his fellow South African artists. In Broken Chord, created with composer Thuthuka Sibisi, he challenges the relationship between the coloniser and the colonised, and offers a work that is, at its core, about human triumph.” – said Cathy Levy, Executive Producer, NAC Dance.
Although The African Choir sang for Queen Victoria, no sound recordings of the tour have survived. After 125 years, only a handful of photographs and a Tour program were found at Hulton Archive (a division of Getty images). An exhibition was created to honour this historical event lost in time. The African Choir 1891, Re-Imagined exhibition was presented at the Apartheid Museum in Johannesburg in 2016. When he visited for the first time, Maqoma was completely transported by the story and the music composed by Thuthuka Sibisi and Philip Miller. He immediately started dancing in the exhibition space. This improv lasted 40 minutes. This transcendent experience morphed into the production Broken Chord.
In this work, Maqoma’s signature style blends traditional Xhosa intertwined with contemporary dance. On stage with a quartet of vocal harmonies, Maqoma retells the beautiful story through movement and song. He will be joined by Ottawa's Capital Chamber Choir, a local a cappella choir chosen for the Ottawa performances.
Members of the Press are invited to attend the Dress Rehearsal on March 1 at 2:00 p.m. in the Babs Asper Theatre. RSVP is recommended. Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
PERFORMANCE AND TICKET INFORMATION
In-person in the Babs Asper Theatre
March 1-2 at 7:30 PM
To purchase tickets, visit https://nac-cna.ca/en/event/31881 or call 1-844-985-2787 (ARTS). To find out what you need to know before accessing the building and facilities, click: https://nac-cna.ca/en/visit
Visit the NAC website to learn more about the 2022–2023 NAC Dance season.
THANK YOU TO OUR NAC DANCE SPONSORS
NAC Dance and the NAC Foundation would like to thank the donors and partners who have made the season possible. Thank you to our Hotel Partner, the Lord Elgin Hotel. The role of Executive Producer, NAC Dance is generously supported by an anonymous donor.
ABOUT THE NAC
The National Arts Centre is Canada’s bilingual, multi-disciplinary home for the performing arts. The NAC presents, creates, produces, and co-prod uces performing arts programming in various streams — the NAC Orchestra, Dance, English Theatre in collaboration with Black Theatre Workshop, French Theatre, Indigenous Theatre, and Popular Music and Variety — and nurtures the next generation of audiences and artists from across Canada. The NAC is located in the National Capital Region on the unceded territory of the Algonquin Anishinaabe.
FOR MORE INFORMATION, PLEASE CONTACT:
Senior Manager, Communications
National Arts Centre