Friday, November 9, 2012


F.Y.I. THE ZULU HUNTING DANCE: = Johnny Clegg - "The Crossing"
One very moving dance in sacred circle dance is the Bull Dance: a dance that originated in the cramped confines of the mine dormitories imitating a bull with the arms held aloft and the legs brought down with a thump. The rural girls have their own version. gatherings is “The Crossing,” chor

eographed by Ted and Andrea Angeline-Erhard and danced to the song by Johnny Clegg.

In Zulu tradition, when someone dies, especially if suddenly and violently, their soul does not immediately go to the next world. Rather, there is a period in which it wanders, trying to find its way. The Zulus use a special chant to help the soul with this journey.

Johnny Clegg’s band member and friend was killed in South Africa in 1992. Mr. Clegg combined the Zulu chant with his own material, and created a moving song to honor his friend. (See Mr. Clegg perform the song at . Read the lyrics at

Mr. and Ms. Angeline-Erhard heard the song, and its accompanying story, at one of Mr. Clegg’s concerts, and were moved to choreograph a dance to the music. Part of the dance is done holding hands, the circle moving as one. When dancing the other part, dancers move their arms as well as their legs, making gestures as if bringing energy from their hearts and sharing it with the spirit world.

Mr. Angeline-Erhard shares what the dance means to him: “The dance, the music, is about opening your heart to spirit…people trying to make their way into the spirit world… It’s a dance we can use to honour that part of our lives we all go through: death… It has a really important place in my life… When I hear about someone who died, I immediately think about them making their crossing… When my mother died about a year ago…after a long illness…I just danced it myself.”

Dancer Michael Summers-McGuinness says, “Every time I hear this song and visualize the dance, tears well up in my eyes. The emotion of guidance, of crossing to the other side reminds me of the loved ones that have at one time been in my life and have crossed over into eternity. The dance embodies that journey, it is very experiential.” Mr. Summers-McGuinness and his wife Tai led “The Crossing” at their recent dance circle in Framingham (see: ).
This F.Y.I.

Is from your Brother Sir Richard...
Photo by Sir Richard...MuzikayiFani

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