DIY 13: 2016 - Seke Chimutengwende & Alexandrina Hemsley ‘Unfunky UFO’


Join us as we form a time-travelling band, zooming our identities backwards and forwards through space and realities

Project summary

Can we form a band and convert our artistic practices into instruments? Could we swap practices, fuck up, become experts, insult music, art and dance and find a new groove together?

Our cosmic band will explore past and future personal and political identities to cast a playful and critical eye over the many NT productions that have underwritten marginalised identities and homogenised diverse forms. To do this, we will plunder the National Theatre costume store, fantasise and express our identities, and use our newfound practices to make music together.

Let’s venture towards the meeting place of collaboration, hierarchy, history, speculative fictions, self and collectivity.

Five days of dance, music, writing and anything else, to create tracks (dances or songs or who knows?) culminating in a ‘concert’ at the end of the week.


This workshop is open to practicing artists from any discipline (writers, visual artists, sound artists, musicians, dancers, actors).

We are seeking applicants (aged 18+) interested in collaboration and open to a non-hierarchical structure for the week. We ask that you have an interest in exploring identity from a position of looking inward to then work outwards.

The NT Studio is fully accessible.

Contributions towards travel can be arranged for participants coming from outside of London and we can help in finding accommodation.

The application requires answers to the following questions:

  • If you could have any stage name in the universe what would it be and why?
  • Why would you like to take part in this workshop? If it feels appropriate, please mention any current projects or themes you are exploring or concerns you have in work, life or otherwise. 

Answers can be written (a short paragraph) or uploaded as video (uploaded onto YouTube or Vimeo).

Dates, times and location

Dates: 24 - 28 October 2016
Times: 10am-5pm daily
Location: National Theatre Studio, London
This DIY is supported by the National Theatre

The artists

Seke and Alexandrina have been crossing paths for several years within the contemporary dance scene. At a workshop led by Alexandrina for DIY 12, they discovered a mutual interest in Afrofuturism and connecting/exploring past, present and future mixed race identities. ‘Unfunky UFO’ will be the first time they have worked together.

Alexandrina Hemsley is an independent dance artist making work that aims to reclaim her identity as a mixed-race woman and tries to engage with the various cultural frameworks that mark her body on her own terms. Her practice is a collaborative one, which she sees as a way of keeping knowledge active and open. Alexandrina is one part of duo Project O with Jamila Johnson-Small and she works with Helena Webb & Rosie Heafford on Dad Dancing currently co-produced by Battersea Arts Centre. Alexandrina has also collaborated with artist Katarzyna Perlak on Bounty Bars & Oreo Cookies. Her writing practice finds its home on Feminist Shakedown.

Seke Chimutengwende works in dance as a performer, choreographer and teacher. He has performed for companies such as DV8 Physical Theatre and Lost Dog and has performed his own solo improvisation work internationally since 2006. He performs ensemble improvisation with Neat Timothy and teaches improvisation internationally. For his company Seke Chimutengwende & Friends he has choreographed four works: Mr Lawrence, The Time Travel Piece (for The Place Prize), 45 Dances for The People of Ham and King Arthur which premiered at The Yard Theatre in June 2015.

Part of DIY Progression – Unfunky UFO: 2100AD (Seke Chimutengwende & Alexandrina Hemsley)


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