Rachel de Garang – Artistic Director Rachel de Garang holds a (BA Hons) Dance Studies from Bath Spa University. She is well known as one of the South of England’s leading practitioners of African Dance styles, with a proven ability to promote intercultural learning. She has expanded the range of her work and now regularly organises dance and music related events. In 2009/10 was Artistic Director for Imayla Dance Dialogues, which brought the “ADAD exhibition of the History of Black Dance in Britain 1930’s to 1990’s – Moments” to Bristol. The exhibition in Bristol for the first, was free to the public and based in an empty shopping unit for three (3) months. It received over 2,000 visitors and as well as a number of workshops and performances, held a very successful dance-a-thon and party on the last day. She is leading on a number of projects in 2012 including: The Doris Olympic Affair, and The Doris in The City and Big Dance 2012 programme. Originally from the Sudan, Rachel teaches a fusion of African dances with influences from East, West and North Africa and Brazil. Her unique and dynamic style, generosity, passion and commitment to dance, makes her workshops fun, energetic and accessible to all. She is keen to develop her students and encourages them to take on teaching and organisational roles in the ‘collective’. Her preference is to work with live musicians, as she believes it conveys the true nature of the inter-relationship between the drummer and the dancer in African influenced dance styles. She is a member of Foundation for Community Dance, Dance UK and ADAD. Her other main commitments are as Director on the Board of Imayla (urban-rural-creative-connections) and Chair of Tribe of Doris (many cultures-one race).
|Rachel holds Public and Personal Liability, an enhanced CRB certificate and professional membership of the Foundation of Community Dance (FDC).|
The musical direction is currently handled by Jordan from the Samba Sulis and Justin Fellows.
Jenny Rintoul – Choreographic Director Jenny started dancing in 1998, with Rachel de Garang. Following regular dance training and time spent dancing in Togo and Ghana, she began performing with Dansmala in 2001 (a group also run by Rachel), and started teaching dance formally in 2003. Jenny taught regularly in Devon and Cornwall throughout this period, with the Devon-based drum collectiveAfricussion.
Following the completion of a PGCE in 2004, Jenny devised and taught African Fusion and Body Percussion courses at FE colleges in Somerset and Bristol, and choreographed for student productions. As well as dance in practice, Jenny is interested in the theory of dance and has presented on gender and ethnicity in dance as part of Bristol Feminist Network lecture series in 2009. Jenny is interested in fusion dance forms, and over the past three years with African Sambistas she has combined forms of African, Samba and Body Percussion in her teaching.
She delivers dance workshops in primary and secondary schools, as well as workshops for school teachers on the development of dance within the curriculum. Jenny delivers workshops for both beginners and professional dancers (including Attik Dance Company in 2010), and at various venues and events, including festivals (such as Glastonbury festival 2009 and 2010); she has recently worked on the television production SKINS, series four, as choreographer and dancer.