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Umoja comes to the West End

Posted on January 27, 2012

Umoja, a musical celebration of South African song and dance, is set to light up the West End next week when it comes to the Peacock Theatre from January 31 to February 19. 

Originally created by Todd Twala and Thembi Nyandeni as a way of a reminding a new generation of South Africans of their heritage, Umoja, meaning “togetherness” in Zulu, has won critical plaudits and collected multiple awards since its premiere in 2000. 

Todd Twala told Dance Today: “The significance of the title is sending the message to the world of ‘togetherness’. The world needs to come together as one so that we can tackle the problems together.” 

durban_4The show takes the audience on a musical journey of South African sounds. “It is a combination of old and new dances and songs from all eras,” Todd explains. 

While there are clear-cut divisions between singers and dancers in the show, Todd says, “Fortunately they are so talented, they all do both. They sing and dance – that’s why the music is so beautiful and the dances are powerful; even the drumming is excellent. The audience is in for a great musical journey that will leave their hearts filled with everlasting joy and unforgettable happiness – that is a promise.” 

The show has previously enjoyed two popular runs in the West End and has been seen by over four million people worldwide. 

Umoja will be in the Peacock Theatre (WC2) from January 31 to February 19. Performances are at 7.30pm (Tuesday to Sunday), with Saturday and Sunday matinees at 2.30pm. Tickets are priced at £15 –£42. See www.sadlerswells.com or call the ticket office on 0844 412 4322 for more information.

 

Nicola Rayner was editor of Dance Today from 2010 to 2015. She has written for a number of publications including The Guardian, The Independent and Time Out Buenos Aires, where she cut her teeth as a dance journalist working on the tango section. Now acting editor of Discover Britain magazine, she continues to dance everything from ballroom to breakdance, with varying degrees of success.

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