The dancer bringing a Latin flavour to London’s dance theatre scene

Published: 1 Apr 2016

Author: Ella Mesma
The dancer bringing a Latin flavour to London’s dance theatre scene

Ella Mesma is the Artistic Director of Element Arts and Ella Mesma Company, the only company in the UK to specialise in Latin Dance Theatre. Funded by the Winston Churchill Memorial Trust, Ella recently travelled to Havana, Cuba and Salvador, Brazil to explore the roots of Afro Cuban and Afro Brazilian dance.

In both countries she studied at established dance conservatoires, took part in a number of workshops, networked with dancers and attended shows, in order see how Latin styles are used within contemporary dance and theatre.

Back in the UK, Ella is intent on igniting a greater passion and enthusiasm for Latin dance. Last year she curated Roots of Rumba festival, a sell-out event showcasing the incredible talents, cultures and skills embedded within Latin culture.

Ella, who is a contemporary dancer and B-Girl as well a Latin dancer, said,

“I feel so inspired and refreshed after my research trips. My experiences have filtered into my artistic work, my teaching and ethos and my approach to curating Roots of Rumba festival. My goal is to share my passion for Latin dance styles and give Latin dance greater recognition in the theatre.” 

On 8th and 9th April, Ella will bring Roots of Rumba Latin Dance Theatre Festival to Rich Mix, London. Comprising two nights of shows, a full day of dance workshops and an after party with internationally acclaimed DJ Lubi, the festival also includes acts such as Cuban born Luanda Pau, Myriam Gadri of New York and Tierra Morena from Sweden. 

Roots of Rumba is funded by Arts Council of England and will also be supported by Daniel Goldman and CASA Latin American Theatre Festival.

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