An experience of sharing African-Brazilian traditional dances of the Orixá and contemporary dances of Samba Afro with audience participation.

Bloco Afro Ayédùn honors Black heritage in the Charlotte community through music, dance, visual and culinary arts. Our participants learn the historical and cultural contextualization of Black arts as they practice an array of movements and rhythms. We share a variety of Black culture from the African Diaspora starting with Samba. All dances and music have been staples of resistance and resilience in Black communities globally.

Moving Spirits, Inc. is a contemporary arts organization dedicated to performing, researching, documenting, cultivating, and producing arts of the African diaspora. Africanistic aesthetics heavily influences our company's repertory. Our work blends modern, ballet, African diaspora dance forms,  and contemporary West African dances.

We believe that the creative arts should be used as a vehicle to bring awareness to injustices and obstacles impacting our communities. Moving Spirits' artists dedicate themselves to evolving social change through dance performances and community engagement. 


***


Moving Spirits, Inc., a prominent artistic ensemble, has graced numerous esteemed venues in New York City. Notable performances include Harlem Stage, the Amalgamate Dance Series, JT Lotus Choreographer’s Showcase, The Boogie Down Dance Series at BAAD!, Dixon Place, WAXworks, Performing in the Streets Series, Making Moves Festival, the Cool NY Festival, Demitasse Cafe at Dancewave, the Fertile Ground Series at Green Space, the Smack Mellon Gallery, the Brooklyn Arts Exchange, and the DUMBO Dance Festival. Expanding their artistic reach beyond NYC, the organization has performed at Dance Charlotte! in Charlotte, NC, the RAD festival in Kalamazoo, MI, Alternate Roots in Atlanta, GA, the Gullah Geechee Community Day in Conway, SC, the Ohio Dance Festival in Columbus, OH, and Casa SoMovimento in Salvador, Bahia, Brazil.

Demonstrating their commitment to artistic excellence, Moving Spirits, Inc. conceived an evening of awe-inspiring dance, titled "The Makings of YOU," which featured a captivating collaboration with the esteemed Laurie M. Taylor/Soul Movement company. This performance unfolded at Dance New Amsterdam in June 2012. Subsequently, in October 2013, Tamara LaDonna Moving Spirits took center stage once again with their second annual concert titled "Epic Narratives: An Evening of Dance, Visual Art, Theater, and Social Commentary." In a poignant homage to Black lives tragically lost to police brutality, Moving Spirits presented the evocative event "RESPOND: Moving Spirits to Enlightenment" in 2015. Additionally, the company orchestrated "Dancing in the Parks: Bushwick Community Festival" in the same year, an enchanting evening of performances set in public housing projects. Notably, during the 2016 season, Moving Spirits embarked on a transformative two-week residency alongside the esteemed Brazilian artist, Rosangela Silvestre. This collaboration resulted in the enthralling production "Walking Elements," masterfully choreographed by Silvestre and Artistic Director Tamara Williams. Such achievements garnered the attention of the Kaatsbaan International Dance Center in 2018, leading to an esteemed Kaatsbaan UpStream Residency in the picturesque Hudson Valley, NY.

In the spring of 2021, Moving Spirits, Inc. was bestowed with the honor of a commissioned dance film by the National Center for Choreography, curated under the discerning guidance of Cara Hagan. Amidst the profound challenges posed by the pandemic, Moving Spirits, Inc. undertook the remarkable endeavor of filming and performing ÌBÀ OBÌNRIN, a profoundly evocative piece that subsequently transformed into the appropriately titled contemporary piece known as Sacred Women. This transformative work serves as a poignant homage to the rich tapestry of Ring Shout traditions. In order to bring this artistic vision to fruition, Moving Spirits has been fortunate to receive invaluable support in the form of commissioning, funding, and patronage from esteemed entities including the Black Spatial Relics, Alternate Roots, Kinetic Works Choreographers Residency Project, the Croft Residency, the Global South | New South Research Initiative, and the Opportunity Fund. Such collaborative partnerships have nurtured the realization of this groundbreaking artistic endeavor, enabling the preservation and revitalization of cultural heritage while charting new territories of artistic expression.

Performance Times

Ballantyne's Backyard Stage

Saturday Sept. 16

1:30 pm

Sunday Sept. 17

4:30 pm

Saturday Sept. 23

6:15 pm

Sunday Sept. 24

2:30 pm

 

Wells Fargo Stage

Friday Sept. 15

5:45 pm