etu kër gui by LABOUR and Familie Doudou N’Diaye Rose | 2022
Grand National Theatre of Dakar

Presented in two distinct parts, etu kër gui is based on a particular succession of rhythms by the late great master of rhythm and symbol of Senegal’s cultural heritage, Doudou N’diaye Coumba Rose, rhythms that Hacklander performed with Doudou, including at what became his final performance in 2015.

Parts one and two engage the same sequence of drum patterns (called bakks) from different perspectives, merging LABOUR’s sonic aesthetic in a hybrid format that honours both Doudou’s legacy as one of history’s greatest drummers as well as his musical curiosity, open-mindedness and avant-garde spirit. Here, LABOUR juxtapose temporal states with one another, pulsing time with alternative forms, in an ongoing transformation of sonic material and sense of spiritual urgency.

LABOUR performed portions of this piece at the opening ceremony of the Dakar Biennial in 2022 with 30 sabar players of Doudou’s family led by Moustapha Ndiaye Rose at the Grand National Theater just after the venue was renamed after Doudou. The president of Senegal and head of the African Union, Macky Sall, was the guest of honour.

etu kër gui refers in Wolof to the inner-court of the home, evoking its functional and symbolic qualities as a meeting place for family, friends and their extensions, a social place to exchange ideas and rhythms, a physical and architectural site built into tradition from where life can unfold; here it also serves as a metaphor for the cultivation of a rich interior space on a metaphysical level.

etu kër gui follows LABOUR’s ethos of embracing the avant-garde as a zone for the creation of new forms and coexistence through distinction, a fluid hybridity that transcends genres and forms not as a starting point, but rather as concomitant to the creation of artistic parameters which embrace dialogue, an approach wherein all collaborators maintain full agency.

Etu Kër Gui by: LABOUR and The Familie Doudou N’diaye Rose

Performed at Grand National Theatre of Dakar 2022.

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