AADC Spring Concert 2021

African American Dance Company Spring Concert 2021

COME THRU! / A Virtual Concert Experience

Saturday, April 24, 2021, 7:30–8:30 p.m. EST, Live on Zoom

Director's Notes

Baba Stafford C. Berry Jr.

Baba Stafford C. Berry Jr.

Twenty-twenty was quite a year for the planet. Along with all of humanity, we experienced loss, struggle, mourning, racism, and social dis(d)ancing like we never have before.

Twenty-twenty-one has granted us an opportunity to pay attention, learn, and do better. The COVID-19 pandemic forced us to cancel last year’s performance. However, for this 47th Annual Spring Concert, we have Come Thru!

The legendary African American Dance Company Director, Students, and Graduate Student Employees have created dances that speak to our collective experiences over the past year, and mark this critical time in our 47th Season.

If you enjoy this virtual program and support our continued work, we ask that you consider making a gift to the African American Dance Company.

Axé.
Baba Stafford C. Berry Jr.

COME THRU! / A Virtual Concert Experience

I. Fanga

This traditional dance of welcome from the Kpelle people of Liberia is used to welcome you to our concert and to show you that we are (still) here and we greet you in peace.

Director, Choreography, Drumming: Baba Stafford C. Berry, Jr.
Videographers: Dhayshaneil Booker, Deonna Weatherly, Tyler Carrell, James Brosher
Video Editor: Danarian Brown
Dancers: Gabriella Bain, Gemi Beard, Alexis Beverly, Alivia Brown, Kenzie Browning, Joe’Quaylin Coleman, Kamari Donaldson, Terence Flynn, Alicia Hall, Samantha Hyde, Kim Morris-Newson, Tyler Myles, Jaylen Ray, Aaliyah Strong


II. What A Character!

When in a society where we are expected to mask up how do you take up space for yourself?

Director and Choreographer: Kenzie Browning and Aaliyah Strong
Videographers: Kenzie Browning and Aaliyah Strong
Video Editor: Aaliyah Strong
Music: Fitzpleasure by Alt-J
Dancers: Gabriella Bain, Joe’Quaylin Coleman


III. It Gets Better

Realizing that in order for people to come together and work as one they must first face their source of conflict. No matter how rough the situation may be, it gets better.

Director and Choreographer: Gemi Beard and Alicia Hall
Videographer and Video Editor: Gemi Beard
Music: Chess-Beauty Slap
Dancers: Gemi Beard, Alivia Brown, Kamari Donaldson, Alicia Hall


IV. Doundounbah

This traditional dance of strength from the Sousous ethnic group of Guinea is used to share our embodied strength of will and determination.

Director and Choreographer: Baba Stafford C. Berry, Jr.
Restaging: Tyler Myles
Additional Choreography/Staging: Samantha Hyde
Videographers: Dhayshaneil Booker and Deonna Weatherly
Video Editing: Dhayshaneil Booker
Music: Leon Mobley
Dancers: Gabriella Bain, Gemi Beard, Alexis Beverly, Alivia Brown, Kenzie Browning, Joe’Quaylin Coleman, Kamari Donaldson, Terence Flynn, Alicia Hall, Brooklyn Hill, Samantha Hyde, Kim Morris-Newson, Tyler Myles, Jaylen Ray, Aaliyah Strong


V. Rewind Reimagine Rebuild: Manifest Trouble Rising

Rewind Reimagine Rebuild: Manifest Trouble Rising investigates the embodiment of moving through time. From earlier days of childhood, embracing freedom and individualization, to the constrained pressures of societal impacts. Can balance be struck between the two expressed extremes? This choreographic research used improvisation, play and experiential videography to take up space across campus. In spaces not assumed for us, we danced. In turn, we explored the past, compromised with the current structure, and contrived an alluring future for ourselves.

Directors: Samantha Hyde and Tyler Myles
Choreographers: Brooklyn Hill, Samantha Hyde, Asli Mwaafrika, Tyler Myles
Dancers: Brooklyn Hill, Samantha Hyde, Tyler Myles
Videographers: Samantha Hyde, Sylvester Makobi, Tyler Myles
Video Editor: Tyler Myles
Music: “Democracy Manifest” by Jones Meadow, They Dream By Day; “Trouble” by Mali Music; “Phoenix Rise” by Maxwell


VI. Kpanlogo

This dance traditionally honors the harvest. From the Ga people of Ghana, it is also a popular social dance that, for our current purpose, reveals that our community remains intact.

Director and Choreographer: Baba Stafford C. Berry, Jr.
Videographers: Dhayshaneil Booker, Deonna Weatherly, Tyler Carrell, James Brosher
Video Editor: Danarian Brown
Music: Elikeh
Dancers: Gabriella Bain, Gemi Beard, Alexis Beverly, Alivia Brown, Kenzie Browning, Kamari Donaldson, Terence Flynn, Alicia Hall, Brooklyn Hill, Samantha Hyde, Kim Morris-Newson, Tyler Myles, Jaylen Ray, Aaliyah Strong


VII. A Whole Lotta Damn Fun

A Whole Lot of Damn Fun started as a duet with the goal to showcase the versatility of dancers, Jaylen and Alexis. The project has since then emerged into a late 70s to early 2000s “throwback” collaborative effort influenced by fierce styles, lighting, house and hip hop culture, music, and SO MUCH damn Swag.

Director, Choreographer, and Dancers: Alexis Beverly and Jaylen Ray
Videographer: Deonna Weatherly
Video Editor: Alexis Beverly, Jaylen Ray, Deonna Weatherly
Lighting Designer: Jaga Ruffin
Music: “Big Fun” by Inner City; “YouTube Mix”; “A Deeper Love (A Deeper Feeling Mix)” by Clivilles’ & Cole


VIII. Everybody Loves the Sunshine

We are beautiful people
with african imaginations
full of masks and dances and swelling chants…
though we sprawl in grey…full of winters,
when what we want is sun.
— From Amiri Baraka’s Ka’Ba

Director and Choreographer: Baba Stafford C. Berry, Jr.
Videographers: Dhayshaneil Booker, Deonna Weatherly
Video Editor: Deonna Weatherly
Music: “Everybody Loves the Sunshine” by Roy Ayers; “Total Praise” by Sunday Service Choir
Dancers: Gabriella Bain, Gemi Beard, Alexis Beverly, Alivia Brown, Kenzie Browning, Joe’Quaylin Coleman, Ryan Cook, Kamari Donaldson, Terence Flynn, Alicia Hall, Brooklyn Hill, Samantha Hyde, Kim Morris-Newson, Tyler Myles, Jaylen Ray, Aaliyah Strong

Audition to join the African American Dance Company!

Learn more about auditions