Young Dance Troupes in Post-Genocide Rwanda: Tradition, Generational Rupture and the Construction of a New Nation
Dr Carine Plancke, Postdoctoral Research Fellow at the Centre for Dance Research, University of Roehampton, Research Associate at the Laboratoire d’Anthropologie Sociale, Paris
Wed 30 April 2014, 6pm-7.30pm, DU.001, Duchesne Building, Digby Stuart Campus, University of Roehampton
Free, All welcome
The last decade has witnessed a revival of ‘traditional’ dances in Rwanda, which has manifested itself in the proliferation of dance troupes for young people. This renewal reveals the dynamism of this East-African country in the drive to reconstruct itself after the devastation of the 1994 genocide. It is stimulated by the project, launched by the RPF since it took power by putting an end to the genocide, to create a ‘New Rwanda’. The latter is conceived as a de-ethnicized unified Nation-State, which while being ‘modern’ and open to socio-economic development and globalisation remains rooted in its ‘tradition’. My presentation will focus on the troupe Inganzo Ngari, created in 2006 and nowadays considered in Kigali as the first of its kind. It will explore the way this troupe came into being and reconfigured the dance repertoire, highlighting hereby the rupture with the previous generation of dancers as a constitutive feature of its emergence and success. It will further examine the changes in the dance dynamics that have been introduced by Inganzo Ngari in order to fully embody the image of a new Rwandan nation.