Thursday, June 10, 2021 from 7:30 – 9:00 PM Eastern/Toronto Time
dance Immersion Online Bantaba & Check-In: A community gathering with Dora-nominated choreographer Esie Mensah who will discuss TESSEL, a national film initiative of unity featuring the stories and lived experiences of 14 pioneering Black artists.
Moderated by Nicole Inica Hamilton, this is an English-language event.
Free Online Participation with Registration Below!
The word Bantaba is from the Mandinka people of West Africa meaning “spiritual circle” around which the community gathers for affirmation and confirmation of self purpose. In dance Immersion’s next Online Bantaba & Check-In, we will hear from choreographer, educator, and dancemaker Esie Mensah on the inspiration behind her new film, TESSEL. Esie directed and performs in TESSEL, which unites dance artists in challenging the global discourse on race with the hope that the film will serve as a catalyst, sparking further conversation and opening minds and hearts towards empathy and understanding. TESSEL is Co-Commissioned by Fall For Dance North and Harbourfront Centre and is supported by a network of Canadian presenters. www.tessel.film
A community Q & A to discuss possible solutions going forward will follow Esie’s presentation. How do we keep these conversations going and engender greater change for Black artists?
About Esie Mensah
Director – Esie Mensah (she/her) is an artist whose creative footprint extends into many genres, disciplines and regions. As a dancer, choreographer, director, educator and public speaker, Mensah’s mastery of storytelling is as diverse as her experience. From working with megastars like Rihanna, Drake and Arcade Fire to historic brands like Coca-Cola, TIFF and the Toronto Raptors, this powerful woman shows no sign of slowing down. She was a featured speaker at TEDxToronto 2019, where she spoke about her experience as a dark-skinned dancer and the process of creating her Dora-nominated production Shades. Her short film, A Revolution of Love, opened Toronto History Museum’s ongoing Awakenings initiative alongside works by celebrity Chef Roger Mooking and Director X. She has led equity and inclusion work at Sheridan College, the Royal Academy of Dance, the University of Calgary and is an Artistic Advisor at The National Ballet School. She is a faculty member of George Brown College and is a mentee of acclaimed dance artist Akram Khan through Why Not Theatre’s Fellowship Program. www.esiemensah.com
This event is taking place on Thursday, June 10, 2021 from 7:30 – 9:00 PM Eastern/Toronto Time.