The Cowles Center and the McKnight Choreographer Fellowship program are pleased to announce the 2018 McKnight International Choreographer and a 2018 partnership with the Maia Maiden Productions.

South African pantsula choreographers Vusi Mdoyi, Sicelo Xaba, and Sello Modiga (Impilo Mapantsula) are the 2018 McKnight International Choreographers. Pantsula is a South African street dance style and a prominent subculture that developed in the socio-political context of apartheid. With roots that go back to the 1950s and the Sophiatown era, pantsula emerged in the 1970s and incorporates language, dress code, music, and dance. Read more about Impilo Mapantsula here

Mdoyi, Xaba, and Modiga will be in residence in the Twin Cities from May 29 through June 16. They will teach classes, participate in community events, and create a new work for 12 local Hip Hop dancers to be premiered at ROOTED: Hip Hop Choreographers’ Evening.

Below is a full listing of residency activities here in the spring. Scroll down to view videos of pantsula dance. 

 

MCKNIGHT COMMUNITY CLASS SERIES:

Advanced registration is highly encouraged. Class size is limited. Sign up here: PANTSULA

Saturday JUNE 2nd, 10 am - 12 pm
Tapsula / Gumboot Class **

At the Cowles Center for Dance & the Performing Arts, Studio 5B (5th floor)
528 Hennepin Ave., Minneapolis, MN 55403

An introduction to both tapsula (a form that combines tap and pantsula) and gumboot (a percussive style related to pantsula). These two dance forms make for a dynamic combination, and the class will end by putting the two together.

Price: $5
Footwear: Tap shoes recommended & sneakers* required. If possible, bring gumboots (tall rubber boots)
 

Tuesday JUNE 4th, 7 - 8:30 pm
Pantsula Class**

At Indigenous Roots Cultural Arts Center 788 East 7th St., St. Paul, MN 55106

Price: $5
Footwear: Sneakers* required
 

Saturday JUNE 9th, 10 - 11:30 am
Pantsula Class**

The Cowles Center for Dance & the Performing Arts, Target Education Studio (2nd floor)
528 Hennepin Ave., Minneapolis, MN 55403

Price: $5
Footwear: Sneakers* required
 

Saturday JUNE 16th, 4:30-5:30 pm
Pantsula Class

Wellstone Center, 179 Robie St E, St Paul, MN 55107

FREE
Footwear: Sneakers* required

Classes are open to all levels of ability.

*Pantsula is typically done in Converse hightops. 

Advanced registration is highly encouraged. Class size is limited. Sign up here: PANTSULA

 

EVENTS:

Tuesday MAY 29th, 6:30 - 8:00 pm
Meet the Artists: Public talk and pantsula demonstration
FREE admission

At Indigenous Roots Cultural Arts Center, 788 East 7th St., St. Paul, MN 55106

Featuring: Vusi Mdoyi, Sello Modiga, and Sicelo Xaba; 2018 McKnight International Choreographers
Maia Maiden; Director and Curator of ROOTED
Moderated by: Arleta Little; Arts Program Officer & Director of Artist Fellowships, McKnight Foundation

Pantsula is a South African street dance style and a prominent subculture—which includes language, dress code, and music—that emerged in the 1970s in the socio-political context of apartheid. Our McKnight International Choreographers will give a live demonstration of this riveting dance form, followed by a discussion that traces the fascinating history of the form and draws parallels to the development of Hip Hop in the U.S. 

Followed by a reception with Impilo Mapantsula.
 

Monday JUNE 11th, 7:00 - 10:00 pm
Open Rehearsal of new dance work with Maia Maiden Productions and ROOTED: Hip Hop Choreographers’ Evening
FREE admission. Refreshments served.

At Indigenous Roots Cultural Arts Center 788 East 7th St., St. Paul, MN 55106


Friday JUNE 15 and Saturday JUNE 16, 7:00 pm
World Premiere Performance choreographed by Impilo Mapantsula, performed as part of ROOTED: Hip Hop Choreographers’ Evening

Wellstone Center, 179 Robie St E, St Paul, MN 55107

June 15: Followed by audience reception
June 16: Followed by discussion with the artists

Tickets: maiamaiden.com 

 

Video of Sello Modiga and Sicelo Xaba with two colleagues

Article about pantsula and photographer Chris Saunders from the NYTimes:

https://lens.blogs.nytimes.com/2016/01/27/south-africa-pantsula-break-dancing-townships-chris-saunders/


While applications are not accepted from choreographers, we welcome hearing from members of the Minnesota dance and arts community who might be interested in partnering with us. 

Past choreographers include:

2017 - Salia Sanou

2016 - Sharon Eyal & Gai Behar

2015 - Gioconda Barbuto

2014 - Osnel Delgado

2013 - George Stamos and Sophiline Cheam Shapiro

2012- Johan Amselem