DIG 21: Joseph Toonga | Born to Protest

DIG 21: Joseph Toonga | Born to Protest
Date 15th - 16th Oct 2021 Price Free - ticket required See age restrictions Location Queens Park Arena Book tickets 0845 330 3501 0845 330 3501

Friday 15 and Saturday 16 October at:
11.30am to 12.05pm
2.30pm to 3.05pm 
in Queens Park Arena 

Free but advance booking required

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.

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 performing en masse to a soundscape which sets up an intense energy with Hip Hop beats and voice over.

Highly Visual / No or Little Text

Audience Notes
Cast make monkey chanting sounds which could be triggering.

Recommended for ages 12+

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. 

About Joseph Toonga

Joseph Toonga makes and performs dance productions relevant to the here and now which are embedded in Hip Hop and inspired by real life stories. His craftsmanship and signature choreographic style challenges conventions commonly used in Hip Hop dance and shifts audience perceptions by addressing racial stigmas and societal stereotypes.

Commissions include:
Boston Conservatoire of Dance
Middlesex University
Codarts University of the Arts, Rotterdam
National Youth Ballet/ Bundesjugendballett
Richard Alston Dance Company

Achievements: Royal Ballet and Royal Opera House Associate Artist
Secret Cinema collaboration for premier of French film Les Miserables
DanceEast Associate Artist
Elephant in the Black Box, Junior Ballet Madrid
East Wall project with Hofesh Shechter
Best Choreography Award Reverb Dance Festival (New York)

About Just Us Dance Theatre

Just Us Dance Theatre (JUDT) is a fore fronting Hip Hop organisation connecting dance communities internationally. It actively supports early career artists and up-skills young dancers who are generally underrepresented in the mainstream.

Committed to removing the geographic, economic and social barriers that prevent people from taking part in publicly funded activities, JUDT uniquely brings together dancers and creatives from a broad variety of backgrounds including Hip Hop, Contemporary dance and the African diaspora, aiming to Inspire, Nurture & Support.

Photo by Harrison Dante