Kweku Ananse
is a contemporary processional and stage dance choreographed by Nii Kwartey Owoo inspired by the archetypal West African character of Kweku Ananse (the spider). It covers his role in bridging cross-cultural traditions from a ‘trickster’ to a symbol of resistance and rebellion. Nii examines the folkloric stories and traditions that travelled with Kweku Ananse from Ghana to America and Europe during the Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade through movements, sound, spoken word, imagery and symbolism. Presenting contemporary pressing issues of power shift, polytricks and humanity. Drawing from traditions, ancestral practices and knowledge found across Africa and personal artistic journey encounters to speak to the trickster within us.

“The trickster is not God nor a god but you, your very own self”

Kweku Ananse was first performed at the Leeds West Indian Carnival in August 2019 with 
a  cast of professional and community dancers. It will be performed again on Wednesday 2nd October at Leeds City Library.

Video © Sally Molineaux

Photos © Tony Bartholomew