Expect the unexpected, West Pride Sound by King’s & Queen’s

"It's gonna be bomb blast!" This is how the youngest member of the team describes the show coming up on November the 3rd. It is something you haven't seen before. Not only it offers dance, singing, drumming and many acrobatic skills, but it also brings a story of the hardship and passion in Africa.

Grace Howell, the founder and director of the show, has been keeping the idea to create something different for the visitors of the Gambia in her head for a long time. When she first moved to The Gambia, she realized there was no real entertainment for the tourists. There are smaller repetitive performances in the bars and restaurants of the tourism areas. Still, no show would offer diversity and combine many different elements in a memorable even.

She set the open auditions at the beginning of April to put together the group to perform in the show. Amongst many groups and performers, she selected youth with a lot of potential for dancing, singing, drumming, acting and acrobatics.
So what is the show all about? What to expect? Grace answers simply with: “Expect the unexpected”. The show is not concentrating on Gambian traditional music. It rather brings in western music and combines it with African dancing. The key is to have an understanding of history in Africa. Grace explains that either girls, boys, men and women in the show, either their ancestors experienced or even on this day have to go through discrimination, poverty, hunger. This is something that should not happen in the 21st century. The show is also very important for the girls and boys performing. Grace hopes it will make them realize that they should never be compensating because of the colour of their skin or the country they come from. They can be what everybody else can be, and they should stand up for themselves. The show will show how much people in The Gambia and other countries in Africa really suffer. But with passion, drive and cause, you can always come to where you want to be. And that is the message from the show.
The West Pride Sound show is starting on November the 3rd. The weekly show is scheduled for every Wednesday at 8.30 pm in Ebunjan Theatre until the end of April. There are two types of tickets available. Standard tickets offer two sitting options; on the ground or the top floor. For the visitors of The Gambia staying at the hotels, there will be a special package available, including hotel pick up and drop off at the end of the show.

˝Some people might say this is not the right time because of covid, but for me now, it gives me the chance to rehearse with our dancers while we've got no tourists in the hotel; we've got nobody around.˝.

The King’s and Queen’s team became one big family. The best dancers from the audition are now a part of something bigger. Grace wants to give them the option to do what they love to do for a living or help them with their further schooling. Some of the members are still very young; the youngest, Idrissa, is only eight years. Through rehearsals, they are not just learning new choreographies but also discipline, responsibility and perseverance. The goal is to let them know that if you work hard for your dreams, you can achieve them.
The group of dancers is led by Suleyman Barry, which Grace calls “her saving grace”. He stood out from all the dancers who attended the audition. His passion for dance has been growing since he was a child when he learned dance steps from his late father, who performed at different hotels. You can tell, dance is his life. And the same goes for other members of the dance group: Sanjaku, Alpha, young Idrissa and the rest.
So, are you ready for the show to remember? Follow King’s and Queen’s on their webpage, Facebook, and Instagram and make sure to see the show starting in November. You will get a chance to see it until the end of April, when the team will begin rehearsing for the new show for the new year. Yes! You will be able to enjoy many different shows on your visits to The Gambia from now on.
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