“This book draws you into Nii’s world of dance…”
“[Nii-Yartey’s] infectious spirit not only draws you into his world of dance but, as can be seen from this book, he is able to share his vision for creating exciting, contemporary and accessible African dance theatre for audiences throughout the world. This book is a welcomed addition to an understanding of contemporary dance practice that is taking place across the African continent.”
Dr Bob Ramdhanie – Festival Director Rupununi Music & Arts Festival Guyana
“[Noyam] is a remarkable example of what can be achieved with ability, determination and vision, and a notable contribution to the cultivation of the arts of peace.”
James Gibbs – editor African Theatre Festivals
“For me Nii-Yartey was the initiator of contemporary African dance in Ghana. Working with him and the National Dance Company was a great joy.”
Germaine Acogny, dancer, choreographer and founder of l‘Ecole des Sables, Senegal
“Professor Nii-Yartey is one of the few African choreographers and dance scholars capable of offering this insider’s record of dance in Ghana from post-independence to the present. His unique combination of local and global experiences in the field has allowed him to write with both passion and authority about the remarkable evolution of Ghanaian dance in relation to both traditional and contemporary developments.
“Nii-Yartey, schooled in village traditions from a very young age, later had the advantage at the University of Ghana of being mentored by Professors J H Kwabena Nketia (one of Africa’s foremost ethnomusicologists) and A Mawere Opoku (the originator of Ghanaian dance theatre). These two extraordinary men formed the original Ghana Dance Ensemble at the invitation of President Kwame Nkrumah. Always holding his knowledge of traditional practices close and passing them on with respect, Professor Nii-Yartey also had the choreographic skill to open himself and Ghana’s finest dancers to works that incorporated many contemporary styles. He created dance theatre works that fused past African movement vocabularies with new forms he created in response to current issues.
“A generous and visionary choreographer, performer and teacher, Nii-Yartey’s book will fuel the next generation in his own country, on the continent and around the globe.”
Sharon Friedler, Professor and Director of Dance, Swarthmore College, USA
“[African Dance in Ghana: Contemporary Transformations], told from a personal point of view, offers information that is priceless for the dance researcher. He starts with an overview of dance in different contexts in Ghana. He looks at the importance and features of dance in traditional contexts such as ceremonies and ritual, and mentions popular dance in urban events like the Miss Ghana competition. David Amoo’s illustrations are fetching and informative. The bulk of the book however is about theatrical dance, his domain. In discussing the development of theatrical dance at the University of Ghana, Nii-Yartey is careful to explain the policies and pan-Africanist philosophies behind this initiative.”
Funmi Adewole, reviewing the book in Hotfoot – One Dance UK