Joseph Toonga works at the forefront of Hip Hop in the UK and internationally. He describes himself as being in a continual search for an authentic reason to choreograph, and frequently draws on real life stories which make his work resonate with people under-represented in audiences for mainstream arts.
Born to Protest is Joseph’s first outdoor work for his company Just Us Dance Theatre. It is part of a Hip Hop dance theatre trilogy he is creating to highlight black excellence and challenge racial stigma. It follows the male duet created in 2019 Born to Manifest that toured to 14 UK venues in 7 months in 2019/2020 illuminating the experiences of young black British men
Born to Protest aims to dismantle presumptions about the black male and female figure based on intimidation, danger and isolation, revealing instead character traits around fragility, vulnerability and a constant battle to prove oneself. This hypersensitivity of the black body in space is magnified by Born to Protest’s cast of seven performing en masse to a soundscape which sets up an intense energy with Hip Hop beats and voice over.
Born to Protest is a Stomping Ground commission which is an initiative of The Place, DanceEast, DanceXchange and Greenwich & Docklands International Festival. The
work is also supported by Redbridge Drama Centre and the Arts Council England. The work will be touring across the UK & Europe from JUNE to OCTOBER 2021.
JUNE TOUR DATES & LOCATIONS:
Pavilion Dance South West,Bournemouth
Let’s Dance International Frontiers, Serendipity, Leicester
25th – 26th June
Roman River Festival, Colchester
Trinity Arts Festival, Bristol
* The Tour information will be updated monthly.
Choreographer – Joseph Toonga
Rehearsal Director – Ricardo Da Silva
Producer – Emily Crouch
Composer – Michael ‘Mikey J’Asante
Performers – Cache Thake
Stefano A Addae