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Welcome to Badejo arts website.
Badejo Arts leads the way in offering high quality performance and training in African dance. Browse our site for details of our performances, educational programmes and more. You can also watch clips of shows and classes, and listen to Bata drumming.
To contact Badejo Arts click here firstname.lastname@example.org
Badejo arts was founded in 1990. It quickly established itself at the cutting edge of contemporary African dance blending traditional Nigerian dance with British contemporary dance. The company has consistently pushed forward the frontiers of African performance through an array of activities, ranging from school workshops; youth dance projects, and intensive training for professionals, to innovative new full-length productions. The company's first productions, Ebo Iye (Transitions) and Living Circle, were acclaimed for their successful combination of African movement with modern form and content. Sisi Agbe Aye (Opening the Gourd of Life), a collaboration with Paris-based Koffi Koko, toured to 16 venues throughout the UK during autumn 1995 and spring 1996. Badejo Arts fourth production, Agbo Iye (The Circle of Life), successfully toured in autumn 1996, and was hailed by the Independent as "exuberant traditional African dance tempered by Badejo's restraining intelligence". One of the highlights of Badejo Arts calendar is its Summer School, Bami Jo. Bami Jo began in 1993 as a series of annual courses originally designed to provide training in African People's dance and
music for Black dance companies including Kokuma dance theatre, Union dance company and the Jiving Lindy Hoppers. Bami Jo has since developed to provide intensive training for independent professional and semi-professional dancers and drummers as well as dance and music students. Bami Jo also offers open classes for African music and dance enthusiasts at venues throughout England, including the South Bank Centre's Ballroom Blitz Festival. Bami Jo is unique for attracting international artists and tutors in African music and dance from the Ivory Coast, Senegal, Cuba, Jamaica, and France.
- To create and present contemporary African dance and music.
- To encourage participation and appreciation of the African dance forms.
Artistic - to creatively develop African performing arts as a contemporary phenomenon, relevant to the lives and experiences of people (especially black people) in Britain by producing work of the highest artistic quality.
Education - to improve the knowledge and understanding of African culture in Britain in music, dance, story telling and other related art forms; lecture demonstrations, master classes, workshops and residencies.
Training - to improve the knowledge and skills of those involved in the creation and teaching of African dance and music in Britain. We aim to develop a process of training artists in which professional training is intrinsically linked to self-development.
Peter Badejo OBE is one of Nigeria's foremost choreographers, dancers and African performance specialists. His presence in Britain since 1990 has made a dramatic impact on British arts in general. He is the Artistic Director of Badejo Arts, which he founded in 1990. He was awarded an OBE in 2001 in recognition of his work with and commitment to African people's dance. Peter has appeared in major dramas such as Cambridge University's Eshu's Faust, and Phyllida Lloyd's productions of Medea and Death and the King's Horseman. Dance companies throughout Africa, Europe and America have commissioned Peter Badejo's work. In this country, Peter's list of collaborators and commissioners includes Adzido, Kokuma (History of the Drum and Awakening), Irie (Agbara), Sakoba dance theatre, H Patten, The Royal Exchange Theatre in Manchester, Cambridge Arts Theatre and Pan Project. Greatly in demand as a teacher, Peter has conducted residencies and workshop programmes throughout the UK for organisations such as the International Workshop Festival, London Contemporary Dance School, The Birmingham Summer School and WOMAD. Professionals and experienced
performers flock to his well-known annual dance and music summer school, Bami Jo. Peter Badejo has also assisted in the development of African dance in Liverpool in his work as artist in residence at Merseyside Dance Initiative. Choreographer, performer, teacher and academic, his commitment to the field of African performance arts has also involved research conducted through the Universities of London, California, Ghana and Ahmadu Bello University. He attained a Masters degree in Dance from the University of California. In 2005, the University of Surrey in conjunction with the Arts and Humanities Research Council, and the Department of Music at the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS), invited Peter to accept a Research Fellowship, specialising in 'Transformation in African Music and Dance Performance'
Dancer - Josephine Okonji : Josephine has worked with a number of leading dance companies including Ijodee Dance Company, Black Roots Dance Company, African Roots Dance Company, Peechee One International productions, Pitch Productions, Badejo Arts, Osun Arts and ACE Dance and Music. In 2003, Josephine toured the UK in the Badejo Arts production Elemental Passions. With ACE Dance and Music, Josephine toured the UK in their 2004 production of En:Trance. Josephine has taught dance workshops in the UK for ACE Dance and Music, Badejo Arts Bami Jo 2005, and Osun Arts. Josephine has also performed with recording artists King, Lagbaja, and Femi Kuti.
Dancer / Musician - Isioma Williams : A total theatre artiste, Isioma is Coordinator of Gongbeat Arts in Nigeria and has worked as Music Coordinator with the Lagos State Council for Arts & Culture. He is Rehearsal Director for Akis productions international and Coordinator of the International Dance Exchange (Odehe/Gongbeat). Isioma was a performer and Assistant Choreographer of Elemental Passions with Badejo Arts. Isioma recently collaborated with Koffi Koko and Collective Artistes on the UK tour of Wole Soyinka's The Lion and the Jewel.
Musician - Ayanlere Alamu Alajede : Born into a family of drummers, Ayanlere began playing and learning how to make Dun Dun drums at the age of 6, and by 14, was the lead talking drummer in Champion Jide Osu and his Juju Orchestra Band. In 1977, Ayanlere began his recording career and until 1981, he featured in over 100 albums. Ayanlere has played with legendary Cuban master drummer Joe Galiota, and as the star soloist in Afro Juju master Sir Shina Peter's band. He has also performed solo at the American Folk Festival in Washington D.C. He has taught music at Chief C.I.F. Olaniya's Children School and Berkley College of Music, Boston. In 1993 he set up his own drum school, 'The Oyo Drumming Centre'. In 2004, Ayanlere has also worked with The Yoruba Women Choir, The Queens of Lagos, The Faaji Drummers and Collective Artistes Theatre Company.
Musician - Jamiu Dosumu : specializing in Dundun drums, Bata drums, the Badagry drums, and the Akuba drums. Jamiu worked with Lagos state council for arts and culture from 1995 to 2001 representing Nigeria in India, Tunisia and Ghana (1999). He travelled with The Glorious Diamonds production to Turkey and Bulgaria (1994) which came first in the National Festival of Arts and Culture (1999).
Administrator - : details coming soon.
- Chair: Solomon Temison
- Treasurer: Chris Dusu
- Secretary: Akin Olukiran
- Members: Christine Cobham, Chris Dusu, Diane Edwards-Gleede
- Artistic Director: Peter Badejo OBE
Since 1990, Badejo Arts has continued to enthral audiences up and down the country through superb performances. Through Bami Jo annual summer school and other educational projects, Badejo Arts leads the way in offering high quality training in African Peoples Dance.
Badejo Arts also endeavours to develop African dance through its support of emerging choreographers and newcomers to the form, as well as through the research, codification and dissemination of Yoruba Bata Dance technique.
Badejo Arts strives to expand its artistic and educational programs for people of all ages. However, to continue to do this successfully, it is necessary for us to have a little help from our friends.
By supporting Badejo Arts, you will be enabling us to continue producing work of high artistic quality as well as maintain our groundbreaking educational work.
To find out how you can support Badejo Arts, contact us on +44 (0) 7435 7030 or email@example.com.
Badejo Arts appreciates all those who have supported the company over the years. Support has come in many guises - volunteers, funders, audience members, critics, and of course longstanding friends of the company.
We thank you all.
Emi Jo 2007. A revival of the 2001/2 production of Emi Jo as a celebration of the abolition of slavery. What would be the form of Joseph Conrad's "Heart of Darkness" if the plot were to be reversed? Rather than the picaresque pillaging of Africa in Conrad's account, Emi Ijo is presented as the cultural gift migrating Africans and Caribbeans offer their host culture. Emi Ijo is a positive exploration and celebration of encounters across cultural difference, exchange and achievements. Finally, Emi Ijo is a challenge to how we perceive and understand African dance.
ELEMENTAL PASSIONS revival ...dance to the clamorous thunder of Bata. Elemental Passions take you on an extraordinary journey, exploring the labyrinth of Sango's soul, exposing a subterranean force that resonates beneath many contemporary black cultures. Sango, pronounced Shango, the Yoruba deity of thunder and lightning, is a spiritual paradox mortal yet immortal, historical yet mythical, masculine yet feminine but whose message touches all. Sango is an elemental force of passion. Like fire, his colour is red and his dance restless, fiery and wild like a bushfire. Elemental Passions was first performed in 2003 as part of a UK national tour. It represented a new artistic direction for Badejo Arts as the focus was more specifically on the Yoruba Bata cultural expressions and practise.
Badejo Arts' productions have an excellent record of attracting new or irregular attendees. The productions offer an effective combination of:
In addition, Peter Badejo himself is an excellent figurehead, speaker, teacher and motivator.
Badejo Arts is committed to working with promoters on specific tailor-made audience development initiatives and programmes.
Creative and Educational OpportunitiesWorkshops :
Residencies and/or workshops are available to accompany each performance. These normally take the form of improvisation sessions in dance, music and storytelling. In the workshop participants will have the opportunity to explore aspects of contemporary British social and cultural life as it relates to themes raised in the production.
Examples of education work offered to support the performance are:
To find out more about Badejo Arts philosophy of education, click on the education button.
To discuss your booking of Elemental Passions or Emi Jo 2007, please contact us on +44 20 (0) 7435 7030 or firstname.lastname@example.org
EMI IJO (Heart of Dance) 2001/2
Emi Jo was the second of 2 works by Badejo Arts exploring the concept of the new Millennium and what it means to Black Britain. It is a dance and music project based on the immigration of African Peoples into the UK. Dance Heart is a twist to the title of the book Heart of Darkness by Joseph Conrad. Out of the conceptualised 'Heart of Darkness', the difficulties encountered by the immigrants comes a 'Dance Heart' of celebration of achievements. EMI IJO was a project in collaboration with agencies and communities in London and three regions. There were periods of residencies and workshops that culminated into a production.
The production was a site-specific performance focused around waterside/port areas, being the point of entry of many of Britain's settled communities. The presentation took a total theatre form using film as one of the mediums of presentation.
TILEWA (From the source) 1999 - 2001
In 1999, Badejo Arts launched the first ever choreographic platform in contemporary African dance in Britain, held at the Royal Festival Hall, South Bank Centre. This platform was the first of its kind, giving African dance choreographers and performers the valuable opportunity to produce work of a high artistic quality in a supportive environment.
Tilewa successfully illustrated the artistic and culturally diverse nature of African dance. Choreographers who participated in Tilewa include; Francis Angol Koffi Koko (guest artist) Adura Onashile Gail Parmel & Ian Daniel Lati Saka Olu Taiwo.
"Through the works of emerging choreographers, the art form will continue to evolve and establish itself as a contemporary form of expression" - Peter Badejo
THE PAIN OF ASPIRATIONS, 1997/98
The Pain of Aspirations peeps through the looking glass of what we consider as Black British life and culture of today, observing and highlighting the aspirations of a people united by struggle yet divided by an unclaimed recognition of oneself. A new cultural breed of individuality has now overshadowed a society that was once unified in spiritual togetherness. This breed of individuality believes that equality can be achieved through imitation. Through mirrored reflections, the society's life is interpreted and understood. The Pain of Aspirations aimed to invoke a mood of reflection, bringing to mind the question of direction, focus and purpose in the approach to the new millennium.
AGBO IYE, 1998
As life evolves, we journey through different experiences. We tread paths of destiny and seek out new directions. Our decisions bring us to many crossroads but inadvertently we revert to our root.
The journey of life, in the end, is always the circle of life.
LIVING CIRCLE, 1994
In many African societies, the circle is a support system for the community. It symbolises the sense of unity. Living Circle explores a clan coming together to initiate a new member into the circle, and the celebrations of a society's ancestry.
SISI AGBE AYE (Opening the Gourd of Life), 1995
Sisi Agbe Aye explores the inner content of the gourd or calabash. Agbe is a metaphor for the world. It contains a multitude of seeds which grow into diverse forms. Similarly, every single human being develops different characteristics and personalities.
SO WHAT!, 2000
So What! displays expressions of a people portrayed through the myriad rhythms of life. This piece focuses on the unique and animated way in which people of African descent express themselves in every day life.
Performed as part of Spring Loaded.
"Training the body allows all other disciplines to open themselves to new horizons and new possibilities" - Peter Badejo
Education has formed a major part of Badejo Arts' activities, ever since Peter Badejo began to give talks and demonstrations exploring the role of African performance culture in human communication.
This has helped to increase the audience's understanding and appreciation of African dance as a living aesthetic and ethical form rooted in the changing practice of everyday life. Peter's philosophy of education views the creative art as a tool for physical discipline, self-exploration, self-empowerment and self-knowledge. Through its activities, the company aims to encourage students to express themselves, communicate with others, understand and show appreciation of cultural, social and physical difference.
Badejo Arts education nurtures a supportive environment which introduces the use of body, voice and music as a media of communication. This enables students of varying ages and abilities to explore their own creativity through movement and rhythmic co-ordination and then introduce them to the narrative work that is an integral part of African performance culture.
Through our programme, students have the opportunity to work with highly skilled teachers/practitioners who have contributed to the transmission and transformation of African expressive forms in a multicultural context.
Special requirements : A detailed brief is required from each school/college stating the requirements of the school/college, numbers of participants involved, times, location and any other relevant information. For all workshop or residencies please note that a dance space is required of suitable size to cater for the number of participants, well heated and sprung floor if possible. All participants are required to work barefoot; this will depend on a suitable floor surface.
Explore traditional and popular Nigerian dance. Learn ëAfrobeatí, ëFujií, ëGalalaí, & more. A fun and informative way to get active through dance. For children and adults.
An introduction to one of the most complex and historical drumming forms from West Africa. Bata is a musical language with its own distinct and extraordinary structure which reflects Yoruba cultural expression. Drums provided, or bring your own! For children and adults.
Speak Yoruba in just 24 hours!
ÃR…P“ Yoruba Language and Culture Services (In Celebration and Preservation of our Culture, Language and Heritage)
Donít let our generation be a lost one - a generation without an identity, origin or a language! Letís celebrate and preserve what we have! Let us teach all children and friends of the Yor˘b· people the Yor˘b· language, culture, tradition and its history.
Saturday 29th July 2006 - Saturday 23rd Sept 2006
10.30am - 2.30pm (9 Saturdays for the summer term)
Classes for 5 - 11 year olds, 12 - 18 year olds, and adults
About the Tutors:
All Badejo Arts tutors are CRB checked. Class assistants will be on hand to ensure security and adequate care of younger pupils.
Fees for the term:
If paying per Saturday, £6 per class per participant
Concessionary fees are for under 16s, students, unemployed, and Rockingham Estate residents.
Itan Kale :
Itan Kale means ëthe spreadí. Through Itan Kale, Badejo Artsí vision is to provide cultural and artistic activities of Nigerian origin to the Nigerian community and wider social institutions, enabling practitioners to deliver these services using a variety of activities,Itan Kale was launched at the Walworth Festival on Saturday 5th July 2006.
Itan Kale also runs a professional development for African dance artistes in. On this programme the following issues will be addressed; self employed status, facilitation skills for leading various cultural and artistic workshops, training in dance repertoire, dance teaching skills, how to run your own business.
If you would like further information on any aspect of Itan Kale, please contact email@example.com.
Badejo Arts Inset is designed to give teachers insights into the function of Art practice in Education and to empower them by giving them the knowledge they require to work creatively with African expressive culture. Exposing them to the elements of African dance and music forms will enable them to understand how to use the art form to develop, plan and improve their skills in the classroom.
The sessions are such that they could be integrated into other aspects of the curriculum beyond physical education. The duration for INSET training is 1 - 1 Ω hours with an additional 30 minute discussion.
To discuss Badejo Arts educational / outreach programme or INSET, please contact us on +44 (0)20 7435 7030.
Alternatively, you can complete the booking interest form and email / fax it back to us, and we will contact you to discuss your requirements.
Bami Jo began in 1993 as a series of annual courses originally designed to provide a training ground in African and Caribbean dance and music for dance companies. Bami Jo has since developed to provide intensive training for independent professional and semi-professional dancers and musicians as well as interested individuals and students.
Bami Jo takes the form of week long training courses held in the daytime, evening and weekend. The courses give everyone the chance to share their skills and to celebrate the challenge and enjoyment of African dance and music. Bami Jo offers in depth training in African dance styles, with special emphasis on the music with which they are danced, the social and cultural context in which the dance exists in Africa, and how to use the dance forms creatively. There are drumming classes, singing, detailed course notes containing background information and opportunities for lively discussion on the nature of African dance in Britain.
Bami Jo is widely acclaimed as one of the most stimulating events in the UKís African dance calendar. What participants say about past Bami Jo workshops:
Due to unforeseen circumstances, it will not be possible for Badejo Arts to hold Bami Jo 2006. However, don't despair! We are taking this as a great opportunity to review Bami Jo summer school so we can improve upon it further. To do that effectively, we need your help. We would appreciate if you could take a little time to answer the questionnaire.
Your response will go towards the future development of Bami Jo.
You can either email the form to firstname.lastname@example.org, or you can post it to the address on our contacts page.
Bami Jo Bintin, meaning 'mini Bami Jo', is an extension of Badejo Arts annual summer school - Bami Jo. Bami Jo Bintin courses are designed to offer enthusiasts and professionals training in specific aspects of African music and dance over an extensive weekend long programme, focusing on the understanding and practicing of this genre.
The course is unique in the sense that it uses prominent international and British based artists and tutors to deliver a programme that will stimulate, enrich and empower the individual. Courses are taught from both a theoretical and practical perspective addressing issues such as technique, creativity, understanding, development and approach to the art form.
Bami Jo 2005 - Ema Jo 'Keep Dancing'
Conference title: The current state of African dance in Britain
Bami Jo 2004 - Leaping Spirit
Key note lecture by Bob Ramdhanie
Bami Jo 2003 - Summer Dance Splash.
Conference title: The Bata dance tradition
Bami Jo 2001 - Honouring the Ancestral Dances.
Conference title: Is Codification necessary for the continuity of African dance?
Bami Jo Bintin 2000 - Dance Wheel.
Conference Title: Overview of African dance techniques
Bami Jo 1999 - Dance into the new millennium.
Conference title: Choreography: Art or Scientific Arrangement
Bami Jo 1998 - Women as Choreographers.
Conference title: The Role of Women in African People's Dance
Bami Jo 1997 - Ijo Yeye 'Mother's Dance'.
Conference title: Female Leadership in African People's Dance: A Taboo?
Bami Jo 1996 - African and Afro-Cuban Dance
Bami Jo 1995
From January 2007, we will be taking bookings for Bami Jo 2007. If you would like to book Bami Jo 2007, or the smaller Bami Jo Bintin, please contact us on email@example.com, or +44 (0) 20 7435 7030
Bami Jo requirements;
What is Bata Bade?
One of the exciting projects that Badejo Arts is developing is Bata-bade codification and technique development. Bata dance form originated in Nigeria and has become one of the most powerful and significant cultural forces in the African diaspora and beyond. Importantly, Bata has a history of flexibility and hybridity - since the slave trade it has been adopted and adapted by different diasporic Africans - Cuba, Trinidad and Brazilian. Bata's mutability is therefore ideally suited to shaping new forms of dance expression in multicultural societies such as Britain in a sustained and rigorous fashion.
Development /Codifying of Bata-Bade Ultimate Aims :
- to be the first fully codified African Dance technique
- to expand the knowledge of Batabade technique to practitioners
- to develop touring and education programmes to traditional and non-traditional venues nationally and internationally Badejo Arts has completed the recording of the prototype of Batabade dance technique. The music has been analysed and notated. Badejo Arts is currently in the process of movement analysis and notation in partnership with the dance department of the University of Surrey. Further research is being carried out with the Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC).
- Batabade CD-ROM and educational resource pack suitable for teaching this technique in schools.
- Dissemination of Batabade dance technique
Hampstead Town Hall Centre,
213 Haverstock Hill,
London NW3 4QP.
t : +44 (0) 20 7435 7030
f : +44 (0) 20 7435 7030