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European Quadrille dancers

Jamaican Slave Exposure to the European Quadrille dance

When the enslaved African were forbidden to engage in their cultural expressions in music, singing and dancing, I surmise they were initially forlorn. The colonialists had publicly declared their African dances inferior, uncivilised and abhorrent. The only dancing genre exposed to them at the time was the European ballroom quadrille. The colonialists and their guests […]

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JANUKA quadrille dancers

Meanings underpinning Quadrille dancing by enslaved Africans

I started my search for significant, sinister and justifiable reasons for quadrille dancing by posing a similar question to that asked by some of our critics regarding JANUKA’s effort to keep quadrille dancing alive. The question state: What did quadrille dancing really mean to our ancestors? Although I believe our ancestors defiantly danced the quadrille, […]

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Beverley januka quadrille dancer

Dancing the Quadrille – A Celebration of Triumph over Oppression

JANUKA have been happily dancing the quadrille – Jamaican style – since 2005. We thoroughly enjoy dancing and take great pride in promoting what we strongly believe is our Jamaican cultural heritage. Why do I continue to dance quadrille? On a few occasions, I have been asked – Why do I continue to dance quadrille, […]

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JANUKA Website Launch Event

By Cliff Purchase and Beverley Bogle It was a chilled December evening on Friday 15th December 2012, when over 100 friends of JANUKA and their family gathered in the Calabash Community Centre in Lewisham, to experience a momentous occasion in the launch of JANUKA’s Website and Logo. The atmosphere was filled with anticipation, mingled with the […]

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JANUKA quadrille dance music

Background music to our quadrille dance:   The musical accompaniment to our quadrille dance is a lively mixture of traditional, contemporary and popular music with the appropriate rhythm and beat and aesthetically acceptable lyrics. This  include 20th Century mento, gospel and dance hall genres. A variety of  background music help to engage and maintain audience interest, as it highlight […]

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Victorian dress

What our African – Jamaican ancestors wore for “dressing up” on special occasions

Our African ancestors from diverse cultural backgrounds took their colourful, rich and unique dress customs to Jamaica. When opportunities arose they used their knowledge, experience and skills to dress up in artistically designed clothes with matching accessories, in order to nurture and maintain links with their homeland and maintain cultural pride in their appearance. Slave […]

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Slaves on Jamaican sugar plantation

What our African – Jamaican ancestors wore for sugar plantation work

According to Buckeridge. S, (2004) Slave owners were legally obliged to provide clothing for their slaves annually, with a menial penalty for non-conforming. This annual issue of clothing reinforced slave dependence and subordination. The type of clothing issued was meant to be suitable and practical for plantation work; of inferior quality to maintain social distance […]

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African head wrap

Factors influencing the design of our costumes

1. Our African ancestors’ dress code: Africans love to “dress up”. Emphasis on appropriate dress is apparently central to all social, economic, spiritual and cultural functioning in African societies. Ritual dressing for special occasions required covering the body in visually attractive clothing. The wearing of animal skin and leather; face and body scarring and painting; […]

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Januka bandana costume

Descriptions of JANUKA’s costumes

1.The Bandana Costume The costume for women consists of a wide ankle length bandana skirt gathered at the waist. The skirt is designed in a “three sister” style with frills of white lace in between each tier. A crinoline is worn underneath to hold the skirt out, giving it extra bounce. A bandana waistband is […]

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JANUKA Jamaican Quadrille Dancers Costumes

JANUKA Jamaican Quadrille dance group currently wear 5 different costumes, described below. We choose what to wear, based on the formality or informality of an occasion, or on the request of our sponsors. Different Jamaican Quadrille dancing costumes Our costumes are meant to convey the message of a unifying force, our place of origin, our […]

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