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Programs And Events Highlights

Cultural Envoy Leads “Dancing to Respect”

Cultural Envoy Carmen Nicole playing xylophone (State Dept. Images)

Cultural Envoy Carmen Nicole playing xylophone (State Dept. Images)

Cultural Envoy Carmen Nicole of New York City’s Battery Dance Company led an evening of dance, song and spoken word performances for a packed house at the Halle de la Gombe on March 11, 2011.   The program, titled “Dancing to Respect,” was part of the Embassy’s activities for Women’s History Month.  It included “Dunia,” an original dancework choreographed by Nicole and the National Ballet telling the story of a small village in the Congo that learned to surmount gender inequality and stop sexual and gender-based violence.  Another original dancework, “Three Epochs of Congolese Woman,” also choreographed by Nicole with local dancers, showed the past, present and (a possible) future of women in the DRC.   In addition to her choreography, Nicole also performed two solo dances.  Other performances included rapper Lexxus Legal, singers Sandy Francis and Nathalie Marini, and poet Elfia Elesse.  The event capped Nicole’s month-long visit to Kinshasa, a busy schedule of dance rehearsals, workshops and discussions, meetings with groups involved in the fight against SGBV and HIV/AIDS, and visits to educational, cultural and charitable institutions.