Fri | Oct 19, 2018

Drama part of A-dZiko's particpatory art

Published:Tuesday | May 1, 2018 | 12:00 AMPaul H. Williams/Gleaner Writer
A-dZiko Simba
Ad-Ziko Simba (left) and M'Bala.
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Jamaican poet and novelist A-dZiko Simba Gegele is known over the world for her literary prowess, dramatic strength spoken-word performances, expertise in literary criticism, and more.

Over the years, she has been invited to speak and perform at literary events abroad, and now she has been invited to present at the Connected Communities Conference called 'New Perspectives in Participatory Arts', at the University of East Anglia from May 22- 23.

"My presentation will combine live performance (poetry, a short drama sketch) and multimedia with narration to summarise the ways that I have used my creative skills in producing art that has purpose, that contributes to nation-building and development - from my early work in England to the past 25 years working in Jamaica and the Eastern Caribbean," Gegele said.

Her tour will also include promotion of her already published All Over Again and her upcoming novel, Deep Water, "as well as generating interest for and income from archival and retrospective work", which will focus on her work with the Munirah Theatre Company, an African women's performance group in England from the late 1970s to the early 1990s.

Gegele also intends "to connect with diverse communities through storytelling, spoken-word performances, and creative arts workshops" and is raising funds to offset some of her expenses. One of her fundraising ventures is on Sunday, May 6, from 2-5 p.m. at 46 Lady Musgrave Road in St Andrew.

Dubbed the Mudalan Tour, it will be an auction of items donated by "various supporters". Among the items will be some of the works of visual artists Baba Ireko Baker and Samere Tansley; designer clothes from Rebel Unit Clothing; a 75-minute, full-body massage courtesy of Kameela Abdul Maajid; exquisite indigo cloth hand-dyed by Visual Griot; T-shirts for June's Calabash Literary Arts Festival; and a weekend for two at Jakes Hotel, offered by Justine Henzell.

The admission fee of $2,000 includes a bowl of soup served with bread rolls, while the entertainment package, to be compered by Clement Hamilton, includes performances from poet and musician Mbala and poets Cherry Natural, Millicent Graham and Damali Ife Ade. Gegele herself will present to the gathering a teaser from Deep Water.