Hip-Hop Nakupenda

A solo by Yves Mwamba
Anne Nguyen and Yves Mwamba
Production 2021 – Duration: 50 min – All audiences and young audiences from 10 years old



Yves Mwamba is 12 when he discovers hip-hop dance in Kisangani, in the aftermath of the wars that plagued his native city. This solo is the story of his journey, from the reconstruction of an identity to the affirmation of the vital role of dance and the moral responsibility of the artist.

Through dance, song and voice, Yves Mwamba takes us on a journey from ancestral dances, African urban dances and the Afro-American superstars who shaped his identity, to the hidden aspects of Congolese rumba and cultural propaganda in the Democratic Republic of Congo. An intimate and intense solo, predicated on the lighthearted telling of a history of dance seen from Africa, in the form of a declaration of love.

Why dance? In Africa, there’s no need to even ask. Whenever there’s a new video clip on TV, everyone learns the dance steps. Congolese rumba songs, which have all been dedicated to political leaders since the era of dictator Mobutu, have the entire African continent up on its feet. Yves Mwamba tells us the story of a whole generation of young street dancers, called the “Mudjansa”. He dances his own brand of hip-hop, learnt without any classes nor academies, and introduces us to the development of urban dances in Congo, whose origins are rooted in ancestral dances as well as gang dances.

With a combination of humour and light-heartedness, Yves Mwamba whips up a singing and dancing vibe, transporting us into a dreamworld of ancestors and demons. From the United States to Kisangani to Paris, he invites us into one of hip-hop’s many journeys with “Hip-Hop Nakupenda”: Swahili for “Hip-hop, I love you”.

NB: This show contains text in French. Please contact us if you’re interested in producing a subtitled version of the performance.


Cast

Written by: Anne Nguyen & Yves Mwamba
Performer: Yves Mwamba
Direction and choreography: Anne Nguyen
Artistic advisers: Yann Richard, Fabrice Labrana

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Partners

Production: par Terre / Anne Nguyen Dance Company
Coproduction: L’Auditorium Seynod

With the support of: Mairie de La Courneuve – Houdremont centre culturel; CND Centre national de la danse – mise à disposition de studio; Théâtre de Chevilly-Larue The par Terre Dance Company is funded by l’Aide pluriannuelle du Ministère de la Culture / DRAC Île-de-France, la Région Île-de-France for “Permanence Artistique et Culturelle” and l’Aide au fonctionnement du Département du Val-de-Marne.
In 2024/2025, the par Terre / Anne Nguyen Dance Company is an associate artist to La Manufacture CDCN Nouvelle-Aquitaine Bordeaux • La Rochelle, as part of the associate artist residency program by the ministry of Culture, and to Théâtre des 2 Rives de Charenton-le-Pont.
In 2024/2025, the par Terre / Anne Nguyen Dance Company is in residency at l’Opéra de Massy.