Black Grace delivers another audacious performance - Paradise Rumour

Known for its fusion of vibrant dance and Pacific culture, dance company Black Grace will release its bold new work, Paradise Rumour, an extension of a previous performance in 2009 and specially commissioned by the Sharjah Art Foundation in the United Arab Emirates.

The latest instalment from Black Grace challenges a long-held view of ignorance and prejudice.

"It is inspired by an older work that I made in 2009 called Gathering Clouds," Black Grace founder and artistic creator Neil Ieremia says.

"Gathering Clouds was a response to an academic paper by an economist who talked about, what he called the negative impact of Pacific Island migration on the New Zealand economy, and he made the claim about how terrible we were and how we drained the system and how we were kind of just like wasted sort of New Zealand's resources."

Ieremia says he created this work as an extension of his previous work to see whether anything had changed since then.

"I ended up making a brand new work which they commissioned and it's called Paradise Rumour and it was based on the basic question of, how far have we come and actually I don't think we've come that far, to be honest," Ieremia says.

Despite the performance taking place overseas Ieremia plans to bring it back home to share.

“I really like to share this work with everyone here because it's been a tough start to the year and a tough couple of years and I always think that art has this way of making us feel better and making us see the world in a different way and think about life in a different way.”

According to dancers, Faith Schuster and Rodney Tyrell, this show hits home for them and they can't wait to share it with the world.

“It's about telling our stories in our way through our people and using our bodies, history, ancestors and connection with our homeland, our people really and it's just about sharing that with not only the world but with our people,” Schuster says.

“This dance kind of shows the complex journey that each person goes through with their inner self, like the different aspects that people hold within themselves and how that comes into collision sometimes with each other or sometimes they work in harmony,” says Tyrell.

Black Grace leaves this Sunday for the United Arab Emirates to perform before returning to Aotearoa for their highly anticipated one-off show on June 7 at Auckland's SkyCity Theatre.

Tickets are available from May 19 via Ticketmaster or