FELA!: A Plea From ?uestlove
Ever since I joined twitter (48 hours ago), ?uestlove has been breaking me off non-stop with new shit from the unreleased Lauryn Hill joint to the subject matter at hand: FELA! Off-Broadway. For the record, y’all should join twitter and add me (my username is: isanaka) because it’s actually mad addictive and fun for no good reason. Here’s the deal: world-renowned choreographer and performer Bill T. Jones collaborated with Brooklyn based Antibalas Afrobeat Orchestra on an Off-Broadway production that stages Fela Kuti’s “controversial life as artist, political activist and revolutionary musician” (Source). If that brief description alone hasn’t already sold you, I fear there’s not much else I can do for you because what else could you need or desire on one stage? You certainly don’t come across this type of hybrid cross pollination of genre, sound, movement and performance everyday. It damn near tortures me that I can’t experience Fela! myself– I will be adding this to the shortlist of cons living in San Francisco. Peep this promo video if you still need some convincing:
Do yourselves a favor and check out the video interviews with the “cast and creatives”. I spent the past hour or so watching them and now I want to go dance or maybe audition for a show. Bill T. Jones blows me away. I aspire to be as powerful and moving an orator as him one day. What clarity of mind. But back to business, to the original source: I am deeply impressed with (and profoundly inspired by) Ahmir (?uestlove) and his poetic, urgent, funny and sincere ruminations on “FELA!”. He writes:
“ladies and gentlemen this is ahmir.
its is 5:58am in the morning and i just got home.
i witnessed a miracle tonight and it is a MUST you read this. and when i say miracle you have to think this on the level of sam jackson trying to convince john travolta in pulp fiction to acknowledge the miracle that just occured (them escaping death by *this* much) i didn’t escape death tonight. actually i believe i found life again.”
I urge you to read the rest of his plea for it is indeed a rare thing for someone like Ahmir to be moved to share such an experience with over 211 Industry folks, bloggers and fellow twitters. Surely, he can’t be lying. For all of you New Yorkers I highly suggest clicking here and copping tickets to witness what can only be described as a miracle. We all need a little more Fela in our lives and Bill T. Jones but damn Ana, can you believe we’re missing out on this shit? Enjoy this original footage of Fela:
Fela Kuti (1971)