Unique dance ensemble to perform at Wexner Center

By Avainte Saunders

Published: Wednesday, November 8, 2006

Updated: Saturday, June 16, 2012 02:06

Starting today, Ohio State students will have the opportunity to experience a one-of-a-kind dance performance.

Compagnie TchéTché, an all-female dance ensemble from Abidjan, Ivory Coast, will be performing their award-winning work “Dimi” at the Wexner Performance Space on Thursday, Friday and Saturday.

Erik Pepple, the media relations coordinator for the Wexner Center, said this kind of African dance ensemble is a rarity.

“The unique thing about TchéTché is that they are an all-female ensemble and their work is a compelling effort to dispel and eliminate the idea of women being subservient to men,” Pepple said in an e-mail. “In addition, their live performances feature live musical accompaniment and dynamic dancing – it’s sure to be a very powerful experience for those who attend.”

On Wednesday, the creator of TchéTché talked with students about the significance of an all-female contemporary dance ensemble in Africa.

“In Africa, contemporary dance groups are usually dominated by men,” said Béatrice Kombe, the group’s founder and choreographer. “For example, in Senegal there is only one female contemporary dancer. I made a choice to have a group with only women.”

Kombe said the meaning of TchéTché is very important to the group’s message of empowerment of women.

“The eagle is a strong symbol and an eagle is an animal that has a goal,” Kombe said. “And when an eagle has a goal they reach it.

Basically, they get what they want.” Kombe said “Dimi” was meant to inspire feelings in viewers on the role of women in society and what they experience because of that role.

“Dimi means pain, suffering,” Kombe said. “Pain and suffering comes from the traditional role that women in Africa have. The piece talks about that pain and women in general. But it’s hard to explain and break down into pieces because you have to see it to understand it.”

Karen Simonian, the director of media and public relations for the Wexner Center, said she was impressed with the response to the shows. “The response to this show has been phenomenal,” Simonian said. “As of right now, there are no tickets left, but there is an outside chance that some may be released later this week.”

Compagnie TchéTché will be performing Thursday, Friday and Saturday at 8:00 p.m. and will have a special matinee performance Saturday at 2:00 p.m. Students interested in tickets to any of the performances should contact the ticket office at (614) 292-3535.

via Unique dance ensamble to perform at Wexner Center – Arts – The Lantern – Ohio State University.

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