They wowed the world last year at their debut international performance and come next month, local dynamic dance group ‘I love Botswana ensemble’ is expected to once again own the international stage, this time at the glamorous Broadway.
From August 22nd to 23rd the group is expected to draw crowds with their electrifying performances at the heart of New York at the Times Square.
The ensemble is a collaborative assortment of about seven groups namely, Mophato Dance Theatre, Skit Beat, Nare tsa Pina, Bana ba Kwena, Khudu Thamaga, Ntirelang Berman, and Tsoga Africa.
Speaking at the launch recently, Minister of Environment, Natural Resources Conversation and Tourism, Tshekedi ‘TK’ Khama highlighted that ever since his Ministry- through Botswana Tourism Organization (BTO), refocused their energy into marketing Botswana through among others, the prestigious IT Berlin event they have had a turnaround of over P350 million.
“This is the best investment I know of. But today we are talking the next event, we are talking Broadway, we are talking something big. We need to stand up and be counted among the best,” he said.
Khama further said that ‘when we get to Broadway we are going to show them the best of Africa,we are going to blow them away. This is an opportunity that we have to show the world our culture and skill of the youth we have. We are going to show them what Botswana is and who Batswana are . I never imagined we would one day have a group to showcase in Broadway,” he said.
For his part, the man behind taking the group to Broadway, the President of the Battery Dance Festival- Emad Salem, said that they anticipate to put everything together in two months, something which he says is unheard of.
“We are doing this in two months and it really is something that is unheard of. People usually take two years to bring such a production to life. We have a 360 advertising strategy to brand Botswana to millions of people in US, a billboard in the heart of Times Square,
Andrew Kola, the Art Director of the I love Botswana ensemble said: “It is every artist’s wish to stage in Broadway of course it is the biggest platform in the world.”
Kola further explained that their production called ‘Pula’ will represent all of Botswana’s tribes. “We all relate to the word Pula, it means a lot to Batswana and we use the phrase mostly in our celebrations and during gatherings. The production basically focuses on issues of the rainmaker who brings the rain.”