Growing up I was always fascinated with dance. Being from the West Indies (Antigua), I saw how social dances played an important role in how we socialized and enjoyed life. These social dances created cultures of their own that blossomed into dance genres that were inextricably linked to specific music.
My love for dance allowed me to explore other black cultures through dance. Through this exploration I saw that dance and the role it played in Afro communities was a commonality between black cultures. Seeing how people dance and how dance cultures are formed has always fascinated me. The Afro dance cultures happening across the African continent provides yet another opportunity to see how dance is shaping black cultures.
All across Africa, a new generation of dancers are accessing their ancestral archives of movements and manifesting them in modern yet ancestrally familiar ways. These new and exciting social dances have created a reconnection to Africa within the Afro diaspora. From Latin America, to Europe, to North America, we see the impact of Afro dance and music.
My trip to Angola in 2022 continued my curiosity about exploring black cultures through music and dance. My love for Kuduro and Afrohouse and my desire to show how dance connects us, is why I started AfroConex. While in Angola, I saw how dancers were innovating and creating dances, propelling the music and the dance simultaneously. But what I did not see were outlets for dancers to simply dance and exchange. I did not see mediums that were made for dancers to encourage their creativity and give them a space to just be. And so the idea of throwing a party just for dancers popped into my mind.
The AfroConex AfroHouse Party or “Festa Do Dancarinos” as we called it when it occurred, was exactly that--a party for the dancers. It was a thank you to all the amazing dancers we collaborated with. It was a place of community and camaraderie, a place to celebrate dance and the dancers.
Watch the Party and let us know your thoughts? should we do more of these
Some pics from the party