Caribbean Dance Comes to Brooklyn

The Brooklyn Center for the Performing Arts was jam-packed for return of the National Dance Theatre Company of Jamaica.The captivating repertoire of dances, pulsating drums and Jamaican folk songs kept audiences on their feet during the highly anticipated performances on March 21 and March 22.

Performing in Brooklyn for the first time since their 50th anniversary tour in 2012, NDTC presented two shows that combined crowd favorites like “Kumina” and new works like “Rough Drafts”.

This group of dancers, singers, musicians and technicians – all of whom put on the shows without pay – was formed by Rex Nettleford and Eddy Thomas in 1962, the same year Jamaica became an independent nation.

NDTC has been performing at the Brooklyn Center for the Performing Arts for over two decades. This year’s performance is part of the the center’s 60th anniversary celebration.

Beyond providing entertainment, the aim of NDTC is “to encourage the Jamaican public to better appreciate the art of dance, and to research and utilize indigenous dance-forms and movement pattern from Jamaica and the wider Caribbean.”

Reporter Melissa Noel had a chance to sit down with one of the company’s choreographers, Chris Walker, to talk about how NDTC works to fulfill that mission through performances all over the world.

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