On Saturday, March 16, 2019, the Embassy of Israel climaxed its weeklong cultural dance festival, dubbed Israel-Ghana Dance Bridges Week with a stunning performance titled YE SI GESHER (We built a Bridge).

This choreographic piece was the result of intense master class collaboration between Israeli Choreographer Oded Ronen, the Dance Students of the University of Ghana, the National Dance Company, the Great African Heritage Ensemble and the Ghana Dance Ensemble.

Oded Ronen

Photo: Oded Ronen, Israeli Choreographer

It explored the myriad of movement systems that were developed to highlight the purpose for building bridges to bring Ghana and Israel together. The piece also highlighted individual struggles and passion, and the collective power of working together.

The night also witnessed symbolic individual pieces like Oded Ronens solo Whale Dream and Kofi Anthonios Tribute, a piece in honour of Ghana's illustrious son, Emeritus Professor J. H. Nketia.

Israel-Ghana dance-1

Photo: We Built a Bridge workshop Choreographers

In a media interaction, Shani Cooper, Israeli Ambassador to Ghana, Liberian and Sierra Leone expressed that when we understand each other through movement and dance, it helps us to understand each other politically as two states and two people.

Amb Shani Cooper

Photo: Shani Cooper, Israeli Ambassador to Ghana, Liberian and Sierra Leone

On his part, Dr. Sylvanus Kwashie Kuwor, Head of Department for the University of Ghana Dance Department explained that, the performance sought to promote community existence and international cohesion.

Israel-Ghana dance-2.jpg

Photo: We Built a Bridge by Dance Students from the University of Ghana

According to him, the Dance Department will through this collaboration, establish a module that could be used to enhance international relations on the cultural level.

Israel-Ghana dance-3

Photo: We Built a Bridge by Dance Students from the University of Ghana

From Monday, 11 to Saturday, 16 March, the Embassy of Israel in collaboration with the University of Ghana Dance Department for the first time, hosted a festival of dance in Accra dubbed, Israel-Ghana Dance Bridges Week.

The week-long celebration included traditional, folk and contemporary dance acts with Israeli and Ghanaian dancers.

It created an atmosphere of commonalities between the Israeli culture and the Ghanaian culture through dance.

The week captured Israeli-Ghanaian dance performance such as Capsule by Oded Ronen and Ligal Melamed; Israel-Ghana folk dance with Chen Laimer and the Kunsun Dance Ensemble; as well as a movie screening on Israeli contemporary dance.