­­­Climate change and its associated social upheavals are preoccupying people in all parts of the world. The effects of man-made changes on the climate are drastically influencing life and coexistence on this planet. In order to stop the continued destruction of the environment, we need to shift from an anthropocentric view of the world to a way of dealing with nature that regards all forms of life as equal. Many places great hope in the powers of science and technology, but to achieve real sustainability in dealing with nature, technology alone will not be enough. The problems of climate change can only be solved together and art can help. We believe that dance as one of the most original forms of expression has the potential to support this search for answers, since many cultures have a large repertoire of dances that express the relationship between humans and nature in many different ways. This is also the case in numerous African cultures. Harvest dances, animal dances, or rituals, such as those to call for rain, are often part of complex ceremonies based on the close observation of how nature shifts and changes, as well as an understanding of local ecosystems.

Therefore, we would like to ask ourselves: is it possible that practicing such dances makes us more attentive to the needs of nature? Can dance teach us to pay more attention to our environment? And how could look like forms of contemporary dance dealing in new ways with our relationship to nature in all its facets?

The Ugandan initiative “Dance Revolution East Africa”, the production house “Yongonlon” in Burkina Faso, and the German “Company Christoph Winkler” have hence joined forces to begin a major research on the topic of “Environmental Dances”. Due to the worldwide pandemic and the travel restrictions associated with it, we have decided to start a video challenge with the goal of selecting the ten Best Environmental Dance Videos. The videos should have a length of ca. three to five minutes. Exceptions are possible. Each selected video will receive a prize of 250,00 Euro and will be published online in a compilation together with all other videos. Winners will be selected by a jury.

What are we looking for?

The project aims to stimulate thematic dialogue between dance and the environment. The ecosystem, nature, the animals, or the landscape should be equal partners in the artistic creation and not only function as a photogenic background. A dance created in this way would then be the result of a collaboration between nature and man, and it does not decrease to formal aspects. The submitted contributions should reflect this dialogue. They can be reinterpretations of traditional dances, original choreographies, site-specific work, or any other performative exploration of the topic.

Who can apply?

Basically every dance artist, dance group, activist, or interested amateur regardless of age, gender, or education from the regions of East and West Africa.

(the regional restriction is due to the origins of our partner organizations)

What role does video quality play?

We have no specifications regarding the format or quality of the video. But since the jury has to decide on the basis of the videos, the implementation or aesthetics of the film will certainly be a criterion.

How to apply?

The application can only be done by filling in the form below.


DEADLINE 23.11.2020