With The Sacrifice, choreographer Dada Masilo explores the minimalism and animality of Tswana dance in relation to Igor Stravinsky’s musical work, The Rite of Spring. For the choreographer, who grew up in South Africa in a Xhosa environment, the question is not only to do as usual and mix different dance genres but to set out to meet her deep origins and to work on identity markers: the collective, the scansion, the rites and even further, the sacrificial desire. “To ask something of the ancestors, you have to be able to give something in return.” If today The Sacrifice reflects its Botswana heritage, it questions the evil humans do to themselves. Is it really necessary to change? What must be sacrificed? How can we start afresh?
About Dada Masilo
Dada Masilo was born in Johannesburg, South Africa. She began training at The Dance Factory at the age of 11. On matriculating from the National School of the Arts, she trained for a year at Jazzart in Cape Town; then at the age of 19, she was accepted as a student at the Performing Arts Research and Training Studios in Brussels, where she remained for two years. Masilo returned to South Africa and, in 2008, she was awarded the Standard Bank Young Artist Award for Dance. Three commissions from the National Arts Festival resulted in Romeo and Juliet (2008), Carmen (2009) and Swan Lake (2010). In May 2017, she premiered her Giselle in Oslo and The Sacrifice in Vienna in 2021. Since 2012, her works have been performed in 25 countries and 150 cities worldwide.
Cast / Crew
Choreographer Dada Masilo Composers Ann Masina, Leroy Mapholo, Tlale Makhene, Nathi Shongwe Costumes David Hutt Lighting, Projection Suzette le Sueur Production Assistant Thabiso Tshabalala
Dancers Dada Masilo, Sinazo Bokolo, Refiloe Mogoje, Thandiwe Mqokeli, Lwando Dutyulwa, Thuso Lobeko, Songezo Mcilizeli, Steven Mokone, Lebo Seodigeng, Tshepo Zasekhaya Musicians Ann Masina, Leroy Mapholo, Tlale Makhene, Nathi Shongwe
Dates & Times
There will be no intermission for either performance.
There will be a Q&A session following the May 17 performance.
207 Queens Quay West
Follow signs and take escalator or elevator
Toronto, ON M5J 1A7
Commissioned in part by: The Prince Claus Fund Next Generation Award 2018 (Netherlands), The Joyce Theatre Foundation’s Stephen and Cathy Weinroth Fund for New Work (USA)
Supported by: Buhnen Koln/Tanz Koln (Germany); Ruhrfestspiele Recklinghausen GmbH (Germany); RomaEuropa (Italy), Maison de la Danse, Lyon (France), La Villette, Paris (France).
Special thanks: Karl Regensburger and the Impulstanz team, Vienna (Austria).