A cultural celebration: H.I.S.T.O.R.Y explores the emotive issues surrounding slavery and celebrates our journey to freedom.
A cultural celebration: H.I.S.T.O.R.Y explores the emotive issues surrounding slavery and celebrates our journey to freedom.
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With an island increasingly plagued with negativity, a group of talented local teens aims to bring about something refreshingly positive instead.

TROIKA is dedicated to providing opportunities of theatrical training and ­exposure to Bermuda’s young aspiring artists, while educating and giving them an outlet for self­ ­expression through the arts by creating innovative works.

“It’s really refreshing to see group of young people interested in doing positive things,” said TROIKA creative director Nishanthi Bailey.

This year’s production, ­titled H.I.S.T.O.R.Y. (an acronym for “Having ­Insight Surpassing Thoughts Of Remembering Yore”), focuses on celebrating the historical journey of slavery from Africa to freedom.

“It’s a cultural celebration,” Ms Bailey said.

A group of 23 teenagers between the ages of 13 and 19 created the production themselves, under the guidance of Ms Bailey, choreographer Seldon Woolridge and technician Shoa Bean.

“That’s the goal of TROIKA,” Ms Bailey said. “Everything we produce and create are original works that aim to enlighten entertain and educate audiences. It gives young people a voice on issues through the arts... It’s an original work where young people are presented with several concepts and they actually write and create the piece as we go along.”

CedarBridge Academy graduate Altonio Roberts, 18, will act and sing in the production. This is his first performance with TROIKA, although he has been ­involved in the performing arts throughout high school.

He encourages those who would like to learn more about slavery to come see the production.

“If you want insight, if you want to see a visual to go along with what you’ve read, come to the play. It will give a visual of what happened, a raw visual,” he said.

Bermuda College student Kayla Hollis, 19, agreed: “It’s an informative play and it will enlighten everyone on slavery, on how far we’ve come from slavery to becoming an emancipated people. It’s really a celebratory show.”

This is Ms Hollis’ second performance with TROIKA, and she has been acting since high school.

“I love the fact that we’re able to expand our minds and even our bodies to take on different roles, having ability to portray something other than what your reality is,” she said.

Last year TROIKA staged its first Work in Progress entitled Ammunition, which targeted an issue that’s heavily plaguing the island — violence in the community.

TROIKA aims to bring hope to the community by way of educating, entertaining and enlightening audiences of all ages, from all walks of life, through their original works. It’s also recently been the recipient of the Ministry of Culture and Social Rehabilitation’s Cultural Legacy Fund.

The success of last year’s production and this year’s highly-anticipated upcoming one goes to show that many young people are trying to counter the negativity such as violence with something positive.

“Look at everything that’s going on in Bermuda with young people,” said Ms Hollis. “I’d like to ­encourage [the community] to support young people who are not involved in ­violence, those who are ­actually trying to bring about something from ­positive angle.

“Instead of dwelling on what’s going wrong, ­encourage and support something that’s going right. We want to get Bermuda’s attention. There is positivity going on amongst negativity.”

The show runs from August 26-28, at 8pm nightly at City Hall Theatre. Tickets are $30 and available at 27th Century Boutique and SHINE’s House of Music & Entertainment. Tickets will also be available at the City Hall Box Office from August 23-28, 11am to 2pm. 

 

H.I.S.T.O.R.Y
n When: August 26-28
n Where: City Hall Theatre
n Time: 8pm
n Tickets: $30 in advance, $35 on the door or $50 for donors. Tickets are sold at 27th Century Boutique and Shine’s House of Music.
H.I.S.T.O.R.Y
- When: August 26-28
- Where: City Hall Theatre
- Time: 8pm
- Tickets: $30 in advance, $35 on the door or $50 for donors. Tickets are sold at 27th Century Boutique and Shine’s House of Music.