“To dance is to take a stand,” as Dada Masilo is fond of saying. With a dozen works to her credit, the Johannesburg- born dancer and choreographer has clearly shown that it’s possible to entertain people and make them think at the same time. Judging by the international popularity of Swan Lake and Carmen, it’s a winning formula. Her Giselle—a young girl who dies after being betrayed by a man—is resolutely feminist. Powerful themes such as grief and revenge coalesce on stage, expressed through uniquely inventive movement. Dada Masilo likes dance that dances, and she likes to work with a truly dazzling company of artists. Add a musical score by Philip Miller that combines elements of classical music and African percussion, and you get a defiantly contemporary Giselle. Once again, Dada Masilo plays around with the past to convey a present reality.
Dada was born and bred in Johannesburg, South Africa. She began formal training at The Dance Factory at the age of 11. She also attended Johannesburg’s National School of the Arts, from which she graduated at 17. After a year as a trainee at Cape Town’s Jazzart Dance Theatre, she was accepted at the Performing Arts Research and Training Studios in Brussels, where she remained for two years. Returning to South Africa late 2006, she began to...Read more about Dada Masilo
The organization was established in 1992, in Johannesburg, South Africa, with the primary aim of creating a home for dance. In 1994, it moved from temporary accommodation to a renovated bus repair warehouse, where it now has a large studio and a 220 seat theatre. Based in the city centre, it is accessible to dancers and audiences from town and township. Between 1993 and 2001, The Dance Factory coordinated 9 annual dance festivals for Arts...Read more about Dada Masilo / Dance Factory Johannesburg
Choreography Dada Masilo.
Music Philip Miller with additional funding from SAMRO FOUNDATION.
Projected drawings William Kentridge.
Directorial Assistance David April.
Lighting Suzette le Sueur.
Costumes David Hutt – Donker Nag Helder Dag (Act 1), Songezo Mcilizeli & Nonofo Olekeng – Those Two Lifestyle (Act 2).
Dancers (Giselle) Dada Masilo. (Albrecht) Xola Willie. (Hilarion) Tshepo Zasekhaya. (Myrtha, Queen of the Wilis) Llewellyn Mnguni. (Bathilde) Liyabuya Gongo. (Giselle’s Mother) Khaya Ndlovu. (Wilis men) Thami Tshabalala, Steven Mokone, Tshepo Zasekhaya, Thami Majela, Lwando Dutyulwa. (Wilis women) Khaya Ndlovu, Zandile Constable, Liyabuya Gongo, Nadine Buys, Sinazo Bokolo.
Musicians for Recording.
Vocalists Ann Masina, Vusumuzi Nhlapo, Bham Maxwell Ntabeni, Tumelo Moloi.
Electric violin Waldo Alexander.
Violin & viola Emile de Roubaix,
Cello Cheryl de Havilland.
French horn Shannon Armer.
Percussions Tlale Makhene, Riaan van Rensburg.
Final Mix Gavan Eckhart.
This show has been commissioned by The Joyce Theater’s Stephen and Cathy Weinroth Fund for the arts, Hopkins Center, Dartmouth College, Biennale de la danse de Lyon 2018, Sadler’s Wells.
Additional commissioning grant from La Bâtie-Festival de Genève.
World Premiere DansensHus Oslo, 4 Mai 2017.
Representation Sarah Ford, Quaternaire (email@example.com).
Duration 75 min. (including a 5 minute pause)