The Prophetess (2018)

Free admission (all visitors, all hours)


From Friday, May 28 through Thursday, June 3, BAM presents “FilmAfrica,” in partnership with African Film Festival, Inc, showcasing the best contemporary narrative, documentary, and short films from Africa and the diaspora. “FilmAfrica” is the cinematic companion to BAM’s 44th annual “DanceAfrica Festival,” which includes a special virtual dance performance, workshops, a virtual bazaar, and virtual art, running May 4—June 14.
This year, in coordination with “DanceAfrica’s” celebration of Haiti, “FilmAfrica” highlights films from and about the Caribbean nation including Raoul Peck’s
Meurtre à Pacot
(2014), set in the aftermath
of the 2010 earthquake, the film evokes the tension of Pasolini’s 1968 classic  Teorema;
Eve Blouin & Raynald Leconte’s In
the Eye of the Spiral
(2014) looks at the Haitian artistic and philosophical movement Spiralism, the film screens with
Real Maravilloso
(Raynald Leconte, 2018)
which examines the impact of Magical Realism across Caribbean nations; Guetty Felin’s
Ayiti Mon Amour
(2016) is a neorealist fable of grief and healing set five years after the devastating 2010 earthquake; and Philippe Niang’s
Toussaint Louverture
(2012) depicts the slave
revolt by Louverture that led to the independence of Haiti.
The festival lineup also includes Matwetwe
(Kagiso Lediga, 2018), set in the South African township of Atteridgeville, the film follows a young man and his best friend as they’re swept up in the biggest hustle of their lives;
The Mercy of the Jungle
(Joël Karekezi, 2018) about two Rwandan soldiers who are left behind in the jungles of eastern Congo, forcing them to embark on an odyssey through one of the most beautiful and treacherous forests on earth;
Mrs. F.
(Chris van der Vorm, 2019) follows the title character as she gathers women to participate in a gender equality and empowerment project in Nigeria; and
Seeds: Black Women in Power
(Éthel Oliveira & Júlia
Mariano, 2020). Following the assassination of activist Marielle Franco, Brazil’s 2018 elections saw the largest number of black women enter local campaigns in the country’s history.
follows the campaigns of a group of women in Rio de Janeiro.
also includes a stunning program of shorts films: Jojolo
(Lebert Bethune, 1966),
In the Heart of Vivianne
Gauthier (Marie-Claude
Fournier, 2017), Tezen
(Shirley Bruno, 2016),
The Prophetess
Weber, 2018), Razana
(Haminiaina Ratovoarivony,
2018), and Al-Sit
Mirghani, 2020).
All films will screen May 28—June 3 on BAM’s virtual streaming platform at

  he 44th annual celebration also features Festival favorites—dance workshops, the virtual DanceAfrica Bazaar (launching today on, FilmAfrica, and visual art—return with new programs including a choreographers’ conversation Bloomberg Philanthropies is the Season Sponsor

Rara Tou Limen dance company_Photography by Luke Atwood Abiol (more images) DanceAfrica 2021Vwa Zanset Yo: Y’ap Pale, N’ap Danse! “Ancestral Voices: They Speak… We Dance!”By Artistic Director Abdel R. Salaam  HaitiDansCo (Cap-Haitien)Àṣẹ Dance Theatre Collective (Brooklyn)The Fritzation Experience (Brooklyn)Rara Tou Limen (Oakland)BAM/Restoration DanceAfrica Ensemble (Brooklyn)andDanceAfrica Spirit Walkers (Brooklyn) Film Production by Chimaeric Motion Pictures Virtual at 29 at 7pm ET Tickets: Pay-what-you-wish pricing $10, $25, $44 May 4, 2021/Brooklyn, NYDanceAfrica, the nation’s largest celebration of African and African Diasporic dance, music, and culture returns with new content reimagined for the digital space. Brooklyn Academy of Music’s (BAM) DanceAfrica 2021 pays homage to the ancestral energy of Haiti, a metonym for Black liberation. On Saturday, May 29 at 7pm ET, the Festival brings together dance companies from Haiti and around the United States for unforgettable virtual performances around the theme Vwa zanset yo: y’ap pale, n’ap danse!, in Haitian Creole, or “Ancestral voices: they speak… we dance!”. DanceAfrica Artistic Director Baba Abdel R. Salaam commissioned pieces from HaitiDansCo in Cap-Haitien and three American companies—Àṣẹ Dance Theatre Collective and The Fritzation Experience in Brooklyn, and Rara Tou Limen in Oakland. Here’s a sneak peek at DanceAfrica 2021.   About the PerformanceThe virtual program features four dance premieres inspired by the characteristics of the lwa, spirits of Haitian Vodou. Each company pays tribute to a different lwa through traditional dance—Parigol, Agwe/Li Sirene, Banda/Guede, Petwo, and Nago. The dances manifest the lwa, bringing messages of faith, hope, and healing, and staying connected to the ancestors, and giving praise and gratitude. The performances embrace Haitian culture’s strength, healing, and resilience through deep, rich, vibrant-colored scenes and landscapes depicting traditional dance movements, costumes, masks, headwear, and elements from the Vodou tradition. Also performing is the BAM/Restoration DanceAfrica Ensemble, an annual favorite and a powerful symbol of youth involvement in preserving African heritage. Many long-held traditions are reimagined for the 44th celebration, including a virtual Libation Ceremony and a Procession of the Elders that crosses the country, featuring elders from seven presenting DanceAfrica cities. Created in 1977 under Founding Elder Chuck Davis’s artistic direction, DanceAfrica has evolved into a highly anticipated and high-spirited Memorial Day weekend tradition that brings together the entire community. This year the tradition is reimagined as a virtual celebration allowing audiences from around the world the opportunity to be a part of the DanceAfrica community and experience new content designed and directed for screen.  The Festival, which is centered around the dance performances streaming on May 29, also includes the digital DanceAfrica Bazaar with over 20 vendors featuring crafts, food, and fashion (launching today May 5 on; master classes for families and adults; and a choreographers’ conversation on May 19 (see below). Details on the DanceAfrica visual art exhibitionthe FilmAfrica series, and a late-night dance party will be announced at a later date.  Tickets for DanceAfrica 2021 dance performance go on sale Thursday, May 13 at 12pm/noon ET, at Information on DanceAfrica programs here.