We are delighted with the support of Leeds City Council towards an exciting artistic exchange with the Ombetja Yehinga Organisation (OYO) from Namibia in July 2014.
OYO’s dance troupe has been selected as one of only nine companies globally to take part in the celebrations for the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow. This support means Yorkshire Dance can invite the company of 8 dancers and artistic director to spend a week in Leeds and working with a group of local young dancers and artists towards producing a new piece of work.
Celebrating its tenth anniversary in 2013, OYO is a Namibian Trust aiming at creating social awareness amongst young people using the arts. OYO works with young people to target social issues such as HIV prevention, sexual health, alcohol and drug abuse, stigma and discrimination through writing, drama, dance, music and the visual arts. OYO programmes provide youth, whether they are in school or out of school, with the tools that enable them to make informed decisions.
OYO’s dance company is a full time company that tours the regions, schools and communities and has regular high profile performances such as in the Namibian parliament and the Pan-African Parliament in South Africa as well as presence in international exchanges such as previously with Germany and the UK.
The focus of the week will be on innovative ways of creating choreography that has the aim of expressing a message or question on a specific topic. We will examine the artistic drivers and considerations in the making of such work whilst creating a new piece that will be performed in the city of Leeds, maybe even in a spectator hub to kick off the Tour the France?
Whilst this week will no doubt be a life-changing experience for all the Yorkshire and Namibian participants, we at Yorkshire Dance aim for the work to kick-start a longer term programme working in dance with teenagers and health in Yorkshire.