Though most of the dance scenes were removed from the film and I understand why (more later), and though this was what was asked for, applauded, encouraged and supported throughout all of the showings and rehearsals it eventually was cut. However, I am grateful that I have an opportunity to share it with you.
FIX ME BALLET
About The Dance
I think it is important to know that this particular choreography was influenced by what was called at it's time "Negro Dance". It is the dance from the 1940's and 1950's. I am fortunate to have grown up in those times to witness the works of such prominent pioneers and to have them as my teachers. They were Thelma Hill, James Truitt, Eleo Pomare, Lester Wilson, Donald McKayle, Pepsi Bethel, Louis Johnson, Mary Hinkson, Dudley Williams, Sophie Maslow, Alfred Perryman, Raymond Sawyer, Rod Rogers, Helen Tamaris, Geoffrey Holder and Morton Winston. Many of these teachers who I studied with at were at the prominent dance studio called Clark Center. You can see all of them in this work. If you do not know who these people are you should certainly look them up. You will be thrilled.
This was also the time of the writer of Black Nativity Langston Hughes. I thought it appropriate to allow the language of this dance to speak in the language of his time while making the movement accessable to contemporary audiences.
The Euro-American culture has always viewed the African aesthetics as primitive and demonic. The African expressions of society and culture has always been viewed as ‘uncivilized’. Their ability to define what was art and beauty could not be overcomed in this clip where African and African American expression of the birth of the Christ child was overcome by centuries of false dogma placed on the relationship between Euro-centric and African thought. The Europeans ability to bend the perception of these two cultures is both harmful and aggregious.
In the end this choreography, though it is not its intention, looks and feels like demonic worship than like Afro-centric art and beauty. But this is a bigger conversation than I can or want to have here.