EL outfit to dance the story of womanhood at Fest

Delving into the joys and struggles of being a woman, East London dance company DaySpring will perform an original piece at the National Arts Festival in Makhanda later in June.

DaySpring dancers, Andrea Payne, 33, left, and Amy Du Plessis, 18, rehearse one of the dances from the company's original production, The Issue of Blood. The dance production will be showing for the first time at the National Arts Festival in Makhanda from June 27 to July 1.
DaySpring dancers, Andrea Payne, 33, left, and Amy Du Plessis, 18, rehearse one of the dances from the company's original production, The Issue of Blood. The dance production will be showing for the first time at the National Arts Festival in Makhanda from June 27 to July 1.
Image: MADELEINE CHAPUT

Titled The Issue of Blood, the production will see 10 dancers relay multiple stories of sisterhood, relationships, divorce, abortions, domestic violence and more through contemporary and classical dance.

“We started working on the production last year and essentially it follows one main character as she is told different stories of the experiences of various women,” said dance teacher, company director and choreographer Kati Ansell.

It’s universal stories about women, the various roles we play, the cards we are dealt within those roles and the choices we are sometimes forced to make
Kati Ansell

“The stories are linked together by a narrator but none of it is chronological.

“It’s universal stories about women, the various roles we play, the cards we are dealt within those roles and the choices we are sometimes forced to make.”

The piece will be performed by company dancers aged between 15 and 33, and among them are 18-year-old Amy du Plessis and Andrea Payne, 33, a former American ballet company Ballet Magnificat! dancer.

“It’s been really emotional because part of my own story is explored in one of the dances,” said Du Plessis.

Payne said she hoped the production would empower women and help to build compassion for one another.

“It gives you a different perspective and has opened our eyes to what different women go through; people are carrying all these things and this hurt and you don’t always see it,” said Payne.

The production will be staged from June 27 to July 1 in the Centenary Hall at the National Arts Festival in Makhanda.

madeleinec@dispatch.co.za

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