#Staying the Course

Kaddour Hadadi

(…)Et quand le soir à la télé

Monsieur le bon roi a parlé

Venu annoncer la sentence

Nous faisons preuve d’irrévérence

Mais toujours avec élégance

Nous on veut continuer à danser encore

Voir nos pensées enlacer nos corps

Passer nos vies sur une grille d’accords

Oh, non non non non non non

Nous on veut continuer à danser encore

Voir nos pensées enlacer nos corps

Passer nos vies sur une grille d’accords(…)

This is a fragment of a song by French artist HK that is apparently becoming an anthem of resistance to the lockdown: “Danser Encore”. You might be wondering why I´m so interested in nominating HK et les Saltimbanks as a Giraffe. The answer is simple. I was impressed as I first heard of the song and also impressed by the movement their performance achieved to kick off.

Sung in many places in France and Europe since the beginning of the year, on the one hand, against the Corona measures, but above all for the reopening of cultural institutions in France. The song criticises with much irony, but also clear words, the restrictions imposed by the Governments, which led in particular to the closure of cultural venues. I think it is an amazing story with this song that has now become a symbol of protest against Macron’s Corona policy.

For several weeks now, people all over France have been organising flash mobs, sometimes in connection with theatre occupations, and singing the song “Danser encore” by “HK et les Saltimbanks”. On the videos accompanying the song you can see musicians, dancers and singers parading through the train stations.

It is wonderful to see how more and more people join in the song and begin to dance. Women and men, young and old. The lyrics are appealing, ironic, elegant, the melody very catchy, the sound of the instruments and the vocal power impressive. In the dance one recognizes the common joy of movement and also of touch and closeness, not least probably because this has been impossible for quite some time.

The mastermind behind the artist collective HK et les Saltimbanks is Kaddour Hadadi, known as HK. HK is the son of Algerian immigrants who is known in France as a classic left-wing singer-songwriter and activist with ties to the labor movement. Hadadi released the song “Danser encore” in December last year, and on YouTube the video has already been able to find more than two million viewers – and the trend is rising sharply. It has already been sung at hundreds of flash mobs in dozens of cities in many different languages.

That’s the kind of character a Giraffe Hero action can achieve – even though it might not have been the original idea. And who’s a giraffe? Someone who sticks the neck out for the common good…I’d like to nominate HK et les Saltimbanks as a Giraffe Hero. Because this song and the videos of the different flash mobs give courage, remember all of us to not stop resisting madness. Nous on veut continuer à danser encore. We want to keep on dancing.

Yampier Aguiar Durañona, Hamburg Mai, 2021

(photo credit : jeuneafrique.com)