On Saturday, 16 March 2019, the Embassy of Israel climaxed its weeklong cultural dance festival, dubbed Israel-Ghana Dance Bridges with a stunning performance titled ‘YE SI GESHER’ to wit, we built a Bridge.
This choreographic piece was the result of intense master class collaboration between Israeli Choreographer Oded Ronen, the Dance Students of the University of Ghana, the National Dance Company, the Great African Heritage Ensemble and the Ghana Dance Ensemble.
It explored the myriad of movement systems that were developed to highlight the purpose for building bridges to bring Ghana and Israel together.
The piece also highlighted individual struggles and passion, and the collective power of working together.
The night also witnessed symbolic individual pieces like Oded Ronen’s solo ‘Whale Dream’ and Kofi Anthonio’s ‘Tribute’, a piece in honour of Ghana’s illustrious son, Emeritus Professor J. H. Nketia.
In a media interaction, Shani Cooper, Israeli Ambassador to Ghana, Liberian and Sierra Leone, said that “when we understand each other through movement and dance, it helps us to understand each other politically as two states and two people”.
On his part, Dr. Sylvanus Kwashie Kuwor, Head of Department for the University of Ghana Dance Department, explained that the performance sought to promote community existence and international cohesion.
According to him, the Dance Department will through this collaboration, establish a module that could be used to enhance international relations on the cultural level.
The maiden festival of dance was held from Monday, 11 March to Saturday, 16 March between the Embassy of Israel and the University of Ghana Dance Department.
The week celebrated traditional, folk and contemporary dance acts with Israeli & Ghanaian dancers.
It created an atmosphere of commonalities between the Israeli culture and the Ghanaian culture through dance.
The week captured Israeli-Ghanaian dance performance such as Capsule by Oded Ronen and Ligal Melamed; Israel-Ghana folk dance with Chen Laimer and the Kunsun Dance Ensemble; as well as a movie screening on Israeli contemporary dance.