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Taking the story of the heroine of Giriama people – Mekatilla Wa Menza as a starting point, Marta Ziółek and Faith Kwamboka focused on the emancipatory aspect of dance and the story related to the female liberation of the Giriama people. They were interested in women’s practices and activities that bring about social change. Especially those that are manifested through the body and movement.
Mekatelili wa Menza – is the undisputed pioneer of the anti-colonial movement in Kenya. She was the first to openly manifest the need to defend the Mijikenda community, and in particular Giriama’s culture, against British violence and colonial domination.
She initiated the uprising of Giriama in 1913–1914.
The initial subject of the study was traditional culture and dance forms related to it,
The artists focused on kifudu and spirit dance. Spirit Dance was used as a dance against the appearance of the “white man”, kifudu was a funeral dance to propagate Mekatila’s campaigns against the “white man”, against oppression by British colonization.
It is an unprecedented situation in a patriarchal culture, when a woman and a mother stand at the forefront of the fight against the world empire. And this is how dance becomes a social and communal – creative, political tool of change.

The final presentation took place at 2 locations: on the beach near „Distant Relatives” and on the main stage of the hotel. The show included presentations of: traditional Spirit Dance performed by the traditional Giriama music group “Simba Wanga”, accompanied by an invited djembe drummer (who also worked on DJ sets), self-portraits in motion – “My name is Mekatilili”, a parade from the bay to Distant Relatives, where in the second part there were presentations of jointly created choreography to Michael Jackson’s music “They don’t really care about us”, female choreography by Ohangla, male choreography “BOYZ” and joint dance practice with a DJ and drummer.

The performance combined the tradition of ritual dances with contemporary club culture, the artists invited DJs and rappers from Kilifi to cooperate. They were interested in the reference to the local dance culture and history related to it, also related to colonialism.

Marta Ziółek + Faith Kwamboka

with Pwani University students : Raphaelem Ondimu, Claire Wafula, Mohammedem Hassan, Valary Otieno,
and rapers: TNC, Kitty Raw

Faith Kwamboka

“I teach dance as a way of fitness and career too and to all ages 3yrs and above… I also play and train soft percussions such as Cow Bell, Kayamba, Timer, Djembe, and Ituru Drums, and have been honored to travel abroad and represent Kenya in different Cultural Exchanges Programs.”
Faith Kwamboka is a Certified Baptiste Teacher, who works passionately to breakdown communication barriers and create possibility for the hearing impaired, the blind, people living with albinism, autism, and the mentally and physically challenged. Through yoga and her work as a sign language interpreter, she is bridging the gap between the ‘Special’ populations and the greater community. Faith enjoys working with youths from the slums/ghettos of Nairobi such as Kibera, Huruma, Korogocho, Mathare, Dandora, Kawangware, etc.
A natural teacher and communicator, Faith is a dancer by profession, artist and leader and for over 14 years, she has been teaching, training and choreographing dance to schools, such as Imani Children’s Home in Kayole and learning institutions, prisons, and general visitors who come to Kenya. She has traveled across the continents as a dancer, and has trained and worked with hearing impaired students who have gone on to become professional dancers and performers themselves. No stranger either in the Art scene, the talented dancer worked at Sarakasi Trust as a Choreographer to Deaf Youth. Other schools and institutions of differently-abled persons, i.e. Thika School for the Blind, Dagoretti Special School, Green House for the Deaf, Tania Integrated Special School Kajiado, Kambui School for the Deaf (Githunguri) too are areas she has planted the seed of Dance. She introduced regular Dance Sessions at the Kenya National Theatre and has worked in different correctional institutions in and outside of the City such as Nairobi West Men’s Prison, Langata Women’s Prison, Machakos Gk Prison, Shimo la Tewa Prison Mombasa. Undeterred Faith also introduced dance and Yoga classes at the Kenya Police Training Institute Kiganjo (Nyeri ), Kenya Police CID Training School South B. Kenya Police Staff College Loresho.
When she is not teaching yoga or dance or working as an interpreter, Faith is an artist, knitting and crocheting wool caps, handmade rugs and mats, and designing dance attires. She hand-crafts jewelry from beads and also does Dreadlocks from fresh dreadlocks, fashion dreads Kongo Nutty (Mau Mau) and specializes in wearable dreads favorable to dancers, acrobats, and performers.
Faith has been a Girl Scout for more than 20 years and is an active member and teacher of the Kenya Scouts Association. She teaches young girl and boy scouts marching and day to day skills, and to live by their motto, “Be Prepared!” Faith also practices Thai Yoga massage and Reiki Healing and brings this pain and stress relieve to her community of Acrobats, Dancers, Footballers, Persons with
Special Abilities and Yogis. She is dedicated to bringing all her skills to her community and to sharing yoga anytime, anywhere, whenever you are ready.
Faith is currently teaching live web-yoga at

Marta Ziółek

Choreographer, director and performer living in Warsaw. Studied at School for New Dance Development (SNDO) in Amsterdam and at the Interdepartmental Individual Studies in Humanities at the University of Warsaw. In her work she focuses on exploring new forms of expression and embodiment; she uses the language of new technologies and pop culture; she is interested in new rituals and the performatics of identity. She constantly crosses boundaries between theatre, visual arts, performance, film and choreography, which she consistently tries to broaden.

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