This 13 April 2017 video is about a dancing common crane.
Bert Duker in the Netherlands made this video.
This 13 April 2017 video is about a dancing common crane.
Bert Duker in the Netherlands made this video.
This video from Bolivia says about itself:
Alternative feathers save macaws!
24 November 2016
Armonía’s educational program empowers the Moxeño native communities to protect the Critically Endangered Blue-throated Macaws by promoting the use of alternative feathers for the traditional Moxeño headdresses used in the machetero ritual dances. Since 2010, Armonía and Moxeño communities have saved over 6000 Macaw individuals of four macaw species and engaged thousands of local youth in the conservation of other Bolivian species while promoting their indigenous culture.
Armonía has been able to conduct alternative feather training workshops in the largest Moxeño towns, but the killing of macaws for headdresses continues in more rural areas.
Please consider supporting Armonía to organize additional training workshops in 2017 to save the lives of many more macaws.
At the following link you can make a tax deductibe donation to Armonía.
A new hope for the Blue-throated Macaw
By Irene Lorenzo, 13 Jan 2017
The discovery of a new roosting site for Blue-throated Macaw Ara glaucogularis coupled with an innovative and successful programme geared towards promoting the use of artificial feathers in ceremonial headdresses, gives renewed hope for the survival of this charismatic parrot.
The Blue-throated Macaw is one of South America’s rarest parrots, with a population estimated at around 250 individuals. In the last decade, Asociación Armonía (BirdLife Partner in Bolivia) has been tackling the main threats affecting it: habitat loss, the lack of breeding sites and ending illegal poaching. But their approach to ending the latter has been especially unique and very successful: to give locals an alternative to using real macaw feathers for their headdresses.
During their traditional celebrations, the inhabitants of the Moxeño plains in Bolivia’s Beni department perform with colourful headdresses as they move to the rhythm of bongos and flutes. The dancers, so-called macheteros, dedicate their movements and attire to the colours of nature. Unfortunately, those headdresses are made of macaw tail feathers from four different species, including the Blue-throated Macaw.
This is where Armonía’s Alternative Feather Programme comes in; it consists of an educational campaign promoting the use of artificial feathers made of organic materials among the macheteros through workshops held in local schools. …
Since the Moxeños consider themselves to be the guardians of nature and all of its creatures, they were quick to understand the importance of using substitutes.
“Each headdress is made of an average of 30 central tail feathers; that means that one headdress of artificial feathers saves at least 15 macaws,” explained Gustavo Sánchez Avila, Armonía’s Conservation Programme coordinator for the Blue-throated Macaw in Trinidad.
The programme, which started in 2010 with the support of Loro Parque Foundation, not only protects this critically endangered Macaw, but also empowers local craftsmen and women to preserve their natural heritage and their culture.
Furthermore, after seeing the mesmerising dances, many tourists buy the alternative headdresses as souvenirs, providing locals with much needed additional income.
Since 2010, the Moxeño people and Armonía have saved over 6000 individuals of four macaw species and engaged thousands of local people in the conservation of Bolivian nature. Most big Moxeño towns already host alternative feather training workshops, but rural areas still use real feathers. If you wish to help, you can support Armonía so that they can organise additional training workshops this year and save even more macaws.
The new roosting site
While conserving the already established populations of the Blue-throated Macaw is essential to their survival, further research remains vital to make sure none of its habitat is left unprotected.
However, entering the Bolivian northern Department of Beni during the rainy season is a huge adventure. As seasonal rainfall merges with melt water from the Andes, the grasslands become extensively flooded, making it impossible for cars to travel around the area for three to five months every year.
The situation forces locals to revert to their old ways, using horses to get across a savannah that is speckled with pools of water, knee-deep mud and head-high grasses. As a result, conservation research becomes complicated and expensive.
But this was not going to stop our team of conservationists at Asociación Armonía, supported by the Cornell Lab of Ornithology and the Loro Parque Foundation, when they set off last summer to search for more roosting grounds of the macaw in this remote region.
The truth is that the team had had many rough failed trips in the region to verify sites where owners swore they had seen the parrot, only to find they got the wrong bird. So, when they got a call from a local ranch owner who claimed to have seen the Blue-throated Macaw in his fields, the team reacted with some disbelief.
They had seen this happen a few times already: while many ranch owners proudly believe that they have seen the Blue-throated Macaw, to the untrained eye it is often confused with a more generalist species, the Blue-and-yellow Macaw Ara ararauna.
Surprisingly, when they arrived on site, it turned out that at least 15 Blue-throated Macaws had made a small forest island their home. This new roosting site was confirmed only forty kilometres north of the Barba Azul Nature Reserve: the largest concentration of macaws in the world live here, with yearly counts of over 100 individuals.
At one of Beni’s most important events of the year, the Chope Piesta, the macheteros are getting ready to start their traditional dance. Today, headdresses with alternative feathers outnumber natural ones nearly five to one. In the meantime, conservationists rejoice about the new discovery of a roosting site. Developments worth dancing about.
This video from the USA says about itself:
27 December 2016
Donald Trump’s Presidential Inaugural Committee has undergone a major shakeup in an effort to attract A-list celebrities to perform for the January 20 event. To date, only a few major performers have agreed to sign on. Donald Trump’s plans to attract celebrity performers to his inauguration suffered another blow over the weekend, after the company that manages the Radio City Rockettes said its members will be allowed to opt out of performing at the inauguration.
The decision by the Madison Square Garden Company came after the union that represents members of The Rockettes initially said full-time members of the troupe were contractually obligated to perform at Trump’s inauguration. That prompted a firestorm of protest from the public, as well as from some current and past members of The Rockettes. We speak to Autumn Withers, who was a member of the Radio City Rockettes from 2005 to 2007.
This video says about itself:
Brazil’s Samba Turns 100
25 December 2016
The very first samba song was recorded 100 years ago. The genre continues strong, with women artists breaking new ground.
This December 2015 video from Britain is called Gary Clarke Company: COAL, Short Trailer.
By Susan Darlington in Britain:
Wednesday 21st September 2016
Choreographer GARY CLARKE tells Susan Darlington how in-depth research into the experiences of the pit village communities inspired COAL, his dance piece on the 1984-85 miners’ strike
GROWING up in Grimethorpe, south Yorkshire, choreographer Gary Clarke witnessed at first hand the impact of the 1984-85 miners’ strike.
“I saw how families were torn apart by hunger and despair, battling to remain true to their principles as the government and the law continued to beat them,” he says.
“There wasn’t a family in that community unaffected by the strike and even today you can feel that sense of loss, not just of an industry but of a way of life.”
The strike wasn’t just an industrial dispute, he stresses. “It was a fight for survival which affected every family and left scars which even today, more than 30 years later, are only just beginning to heal.”
Clarke managed to escape from Grimethorpe’s high unemployment through dance — he’s been dubbed “Billy Elliot” in some quarters — and, in doing so, chose to ignore the consequences of the strike.
It wasn’t until he’d started to mature through the development of his work that he began to look back on the past and really understand what his village went through in 1984 and how it had shaped the future for generations of people.
“I was shocked, sickened — and educated — by what I discovered and was compelled to try and explore those feelings and show this through the medium of contemporary dance and movement.”
Initially, he produced a small-scale version of COAL in 2009 and then two years ago, with the 30th anniversary of the strike approaching, deemed it the right time to expand on that original piece and create a dance work which looked at the mining industry, its work and domestic lives and its disputes.
The show isn’t the first time Clarke has drawn on personal experiences as a source for his work but for COAL he knew that he needed to thoroughly research the subject “and that added a whole new level of detail and depth to the show you see now.”
He interviewed Anne Scargill and Betty Cook, founders of Women Against Pit Closures, and spent time with Chris Skidmore of the National Union of Mineworkers, Bruce Wilson, author of Yorkshire’s Flying Pickets, Barnsley historian and author Brian Elliott and Paul Winter of the Orgreave Truth and Justice Campaign.
Their input was “absolutely central,” he says. “I got completely caught up in the story of a community fighting to survive. It is the authentic voices of women like Anne Scargill and Betty Cook who bring the latter stages of COAL to life.”
It’s in these sections of the production that one of the dancers, TC Howard, delivers a monologue that brings to life the real voices of the region’s women.
“At every performance people laugh and cry at what they are hearing,” Clarke says.
“The version of Thatcher we present is sharply satirical, not in any way an attempt to present the real woman,” Clarke explains.
“The combination of her movement and Steve’s evocation of Thatcher’s speeches is brilliant and scary and Eleanor is always disappointed if she doesn’t get the audience booing.”
As the show developed and Thatcher became a major character in the narrative, Clarke says that the characterisation went beyond the purely personal and acquired a political message.
“But I hope it’s one with a universal message too.
“Conveying what it was like to be part of the strike also gives a vivid idea of what it’s like to be part of any group of people who take on a repressive regime, who challenge brutal authority and fight for their rights.”
That sense of community spirit provides the production’s emotional heart and it’s at its artistic core, with a cast of local women and a live brass band working alongside the cast of seven professional dancers at each venue the show tours.
COAL would not exist without that community involvement, Clarke is at pains to point out.“I always wanted to create a major piece of community theatre and with the band and my pit women on stage I think we’ve done just that.
“The live brass creates a totally authentic and moving musical accompaniment and the involvement of the women works in exactly the same way.”
Whether by coincidence or design these are two sections of the mining community that survived or derived a positive outcome from the strike — the colliery brass bands, as memorably depicted in the 1996 film Brassed Off, and the women who were given “a voice they had perhaps never used before but which they have never lost.”
The other legacy that remains pertinent is that, as Clarke says, “in a world where workers’ rights are being constantly eroded in the name of progress and ‘economy,’ it’s always important to be reminded that there was a time when people were prepared to stand together and fight for what they believed in.”
COAL runs at at the Tramway in Glasgow from September 30-October 1, then tours until December 8, details: coaltour.co.uk.
This 2015 video says about itself:
Translated from Dutch NOS TV:
Choreographer Hans van Manen refuses Turkish award
The Dutch choreographer Hans van Manen refuses a honourary award from the Turkish state. Turkey wanted to honor him as “Choreographer of the Century”, but Van Manen does not accept the title.
To NPO Radio 1 Van Manen said he refuses the prize “for the simple reason that newspapers and journalists who are just doing their jobs are muzzled and end up in prison.” …
Hans van Manen (83) is one of the most prominent Dutch choreographers. Internationally he enjoys great fame. He worked for the past sixty years in the Dutch Dance Theatre and the National Ballet. …
Press freedom in Turkey has been under pressure for a long time. A month ago Can Dündar, editor of the Turkish daily Cumhuriyet, was sentenced for disclosing state secrets … Dündar received a prison sentence of five years and ten months.