Never 21 is a tribute to young victims of gun violence in poor and discriminated neighbourhoods in cities like New York, Rio de Janeiro or Johannesburg. It is no coincidence that choreographer Smail Kanouté refers to the hashtag #Never21, created by the Black Live Matters movement to signal the lives of twenty-one year olds that were broken in a violent and unjust way. From an emblem of divine protection and luck, the number 21 becomes a cursed symbol that represents the impossibility of seeing young people grow up to the fullness of life. Kanoutè builds his choreography starting from the testimonies of the families of the victims. Their words are written on the bodies of the dancers like signs of a new urban shamanism. The words, the pain and the anger of the victims and families possess the bodies like wandering spirits, each with its own story. From Krump to electro, from popping to contemporary dance, different energies weave a story of broken destinies, now released from their imprisonment.
Choreography Smail Kanouté
Dance: Aston Bonaparte, Salomon Mpondo-Dicka & Smail Kanouté
Body painter: Luca Fiore
Assistant choreography: Moustapha Ziane
Scenography and Light design: Olivier Brichet
Sound designer: Paul Lajus
Lighting director: Bryan Jean-Baptiste
Costumes: Rachel Boa & Ornella Maris
Exectuive Production: Compagnie Vivons !
Co-productions: Les Ateliers Médicis – Clichy sous Bois? Espace 1789 – Scène conventionnée danse – Saint Ouen
Les Rencontres Chorégraphiques Internationales de Seine Saint Denis Théâtre de la Ville – Danse Élargie 2020 – Fondation d’entreprise Hermès CentQuatre – Paris