The performing arts can be a tool that supports social change to unify communities in order to create positive transformation. Artistic expression can be the first step in helping communities to shift their overall environmental awareness.
The One Earth Dance Competition was an event that ACDP hosted to support communities and youth who have an interest in dance. The dance competition theme, Only One Earth, centralized on the importance of being able to creatively demonstrate the need for Port Moresby residents to change their collective behaviours to enable cleaner, greener and more sustainable living.
The theme paired with the 2022 World Environment Day theme that encouraged city residents to take personal responsibility for the earth. The theme also encouraged Port Moresby residents to make positive choices regarding the environment while using dance as the main communication vehicle.
ACDP hosted the One Earth Dance Competition Semi-Finals on Saturday, 14th May 2022 at South Side Fitness Center, Koki. Nine dance crews competed during the One Earth Dance Competition and were critiqued by a panel of 3 judges.
The main criterion that the judges observed during the performances was whether or not the dance encouraged the observer towards environmentally positive behavior. Other criteria that the judges looked for was rhythm and character, style and transitions, creativity, and musicality, execution, level of difficulty, showmanship and stage presence. The dance performances included hip-hop, musical theatre, traditional dance, circus and dancehall. Out of the 9 dance crews 6 finalists were selected. The finalists were given the opportunity to perform during the Amazing Port Moresby World Environment Day events in June. ACDP supported these finalists by sponsoring their costumes, coaching them on how to improve their performance in preparation for World Environment Day and also provided them a platform to showcase for the general public. In this way ACDP aimed to encourage and inspire several of the up-and-coming dance crews in Port Moresby.
Later on, during the year, the One Earth Dance Competition Finale will be rescheduled. The finalists will be invited to compete for prize money during the competition. Until then, the 6 finalists have ample opportunity to continue to refine their skills with the support and encouragement of the Active City Development Program through its ongoing trainings and periodic visits to the finalists’ communities. ACDP wishes to extend a big thank you to the Only One Earth Dance Competition judges who gave of their time to support this event: Meriba-May Igara, the Creative Director and Choreographer of Bilas PNG Performing Arts, Lizzie Lam Sam, Founder and Director of Ekere Fitness Dance Studio and Mr. Steven Pagasa, professor and lecturer at the University of Papua New Guinea in the Melanesian Institute of Arts and Communication.