What is The Kandake?
Founded in March 2011, The Kandake is a dance-theatre that combines social activism and community engagement with folkloric and experimental artistry while creating performance art, full-length theatrical works, and shows that are immersive, transformative, socially-conscious, accessible, and unique.
The original Kandake were the queens of ancient Ethiopia, Sudan, Somalia, and parts of Egypt who were the political, military, and spiritual leaders of their societies. The members of The Kandake aim to continue the legacy of their predecessors—with modern relevancy—by generating active community leaders and joining the frontlines of diverse humanitarian efforts as part of their collective higher purpose.
The Kandake stays active in the community by hosting free shows, street art, workshops, retreats; by collaborating with other grassroots community groups; and supporting worthy causes. Since 2020, we've also offered free virtual services such as dance classes, support groups, mini grants, anti-racist resources, protest safety tips, fundraiser performances, community and movement-building donations, covid-era artist features in Broadway World, and more.
Storytelling and interaction with the audience is integral to the theatre. While some presentations may be absurdist, graphic, or "dark" the purpose of the work is to rupture comfort zones, wake the unconscious, and inspire critical thinking (though, sometimes, we dance just for the love of dancing!)
The collective embraces talented performers of various ethnicities, religious (or non-religious) backgrounds, sexual orientations, gender identities, and ability levels. If you are interested in working with The Kandake please contact KandakeDance@gmail.com.