August 21, 2017 - Toronto ON...
The Watah Theatre is thrilled to announce the World Premiere of d’bi.young anitafrika’s Award-Winning Dub Opera Lukumi, the final instalment of her gripping Orisha Trilogy featuring the Dora nominated Esu Crossing The Middle Passage and Dora awarded Mami Wata & the PussyWitch Hunt. Following rave reviews of Lukumi’s first workshop at the 2016 Summerworks Festival and the winning of NOW Magazine’s Audience Choice award and Summerworks Best Production Honorable Mention, anitafrika returns with the full-length Dub Opera at the Tarragon Theatre Extraspace from September 26 to October 14, 2017 with two preview performances on September 22 and 23. Lukumi is a headlining presentation at Nuit Blanche Toronto 2017: Many Possible Futures, on September 30th. Lukumi formerly entitled Bleeders, is an Afro-futurist Dub -Opera set in post--apocalypse Turtle Island in 2167, 150 years after WWIII and 100 years after the Period of Explosions (PoE). The PoE saw the widespread meltdown of nuclear power plants – due to global environmental degradation – making the surface of the earth virtually uninhabitable. A group of freedom fighters called the Ohosi Mino live underground in intricate cave systems where they are viciously hunted by The One World Army. Having access to ancient knowledges, the Ahosi Mino must send a Lukumi on a vision quest, descending through nine layers of earth, to find humanity's redemption or to die trying. Anitafrika – one of only 200 artists to receive a Canada Council New Chapter project grant – is once again experimenting with expanding the boundaries of dub theatre. The winner of three Dora awards for Blood.claat and Mami Wata & the PussyWitch Hunt, her other awards include: Golden Beret, KM Hunter Theatre, Mayor’s Arts, Vital People, Canadian Poet of Honor, Toronto Leadership Lab Fellow and YWCA Woman of Distinction in the Arts. She is an internationally celebrated African-Jamaican dubpoet, playwright-performer, arts-educator, and Artistic Director of Canada’s Watah Theatre, whose trans-disciplinary work explores themes of identity, gender, sexuality, divinity, the erotic, race, class and the human experience. Anitafrika is the creator of The Anitafrika Sorplusi Method, which has been utilized by The Stephen Lewis Foundation, The Banff Centre, U of T, MaRS, Women’s College Hospital and other institutions globally. She is the published author of 7 books, 7 plays and 7 dub albums. Lukumi will see the return of original cast members: Aisha Bentham, Najla Nubyanluv, Sashoya Shoya Oya, and d’bi.young anitafrika in the title role of Lukumi. This all-star line-up will also include upstarters: Sedina Fiati, Uche Kenzie and Savannah Clarke. Making their Canadian debut are veterans of the Jamaican stage and dance theatre, director Eugene Williams and choreographer L’Antoinette Stines. And introducing from Jamaica, firebrand performers Webster McDonald and Julene Robinson. Watah is also thrilled to announce that the 2017 Dora award winning Waleed Abdulhamid is the project’s Musical Director, Co-composer and bassist. Waleed will be joined by the dynamic Dub Orchestra The 333 featuring Patrick O’Reilly on guitar, Joe Callender on horns and master drummer Amara Kante on percussions. The incomparable Rachel Forbes is set and costume designer and the irreplaceable Michelle Ramsay is lighting designer. Juno nominated Suba Sankaran of Autorickshaw completes this phenomenal team as Music Notator.
MEDIA: Now Magazine: 3 N’s and Critic’s Pick bit.do/nowreview My Entertainment World: ...historical monument...cautionary tale bit.do/myentertainmentreview Mooney on Theatre: ...an exceptionally powerful piece of theatre. bit.do/Mooneyreview
LUKUMI: A Dub Opera by d’bi.young anitafrika Librettist/Co-Composer/Principal d’bi.young anitafrika | Musical Dir/Co-Composer Waleed Abdulhamid | Dir Eugene Williams Choreographer L’Antoinette Stines | Set/Costume Designer Rachel Forbes | Lighting Designer Michelle Ramsay Music Notator Suba Sankaran | Previews Sept 22 - 23 | Running Sept 26 – Oct 14, 2017 | Tues - Sat at 8pm Wed at 1:30pm | Sat at 2:30pm | Ticket Price General $32.00 + Arts Workers/ Students $27 | PWYC Wed matinees Tarragon Theatre Extra Space | 30 Bridgman Ave. | Advance Tickets bit.do/lukumi