Nike Celebrates the Power of Dance and Enduring Strength of Black Women

Film by AKQA uses choreography to tell a story of 'birth, connection, roots, protection, recognition and awakening'

Singer Ludmilla and dance troupe The Turmalinas Negras star in ad about female empowerment. Nike / AKQA

Nike has launched a beautifully choreographed film titled “The Awakening in Dance: An Experience in Motion” to celebrate Black women and encourage new generations to explore different forms of sport and movement.

The spot, which features Brazilian singer Ludmilla and dance troupe The Turmalinas Negras, was created by AKQA and Think Eva, with direction from Juh Almeida.

It aims to show the “empowerment and manifestation of Black culture” through dance, according to AKQA said, with the choreography designed to show six important moments: birth, connection, roots, protection, recognition and awakening.

Members of the Nike Training Club will also have access to exclusive content that explains the steps of the choreography via short videos so they can reproduce the movements and “connect with the transforming power of dance” as part of the campaign.

The ad is Nike’s latest work centered around the theme of black empowerment.

In May, at the height of Black Lives Matter protests, the brand released a 60-second ad titled “For Once, Don’t Do It” from Wieden+Kennedy Portland that took direct aim at racism.

“Don’t pretend there’s not a problem in America. Don’t turn your back on racism,” the earlier ad said. “Don’t accept innocent lives being taken from us. Don’t make any more excuses. Don’t sit back and be silent.”

Client: Nike
Title: The Awakening in Dance: An experience in motion
Clients: Gustavo Viana, Raphael Peres, Livia Pinheiro, José Diogo Rodrigues, Murillo Maldonado, Aline Cupido, Flávia Silva, Fabio Albuquerque and Ingrid Ferreira
Agency: AKQA SP
Global Chief Creative Officers: Diego Machado  Hugo Veiga
Executive Creative Director: Renato Zandoná
Group Creative Director: Christiano Vellutini
Creative Team: Eduarda Nieto, Erika Moreira and Bruno de Carvalho
Managing Director: Luiza Baffa
Strategy: Amanda Déa
Brand Lead: Paula Santana
Brand Director: Yago Sant’Anna
Brand Manager:  Juliana Dantas e Laura Coelho
Brand Manager Assistant: Hadassa Lima
PR: Debora Bacaltchuk
Operation Director: Lucas Costa
Operation Manager: Lucas Araque
Motion: Anderson Lima and Guilherme Romeiro
Strategic Consultancy: Think Eva
Co-Creation: Turmalinas Negras – Aline Constantino, Darita Albino, Mayara Rosa, Maiwsi Ayana, Nice Estrela and Ludmilla
Production Company: Pródigo Films
Director: Juh Almeida
Sound Production Company: Capitão Foca
Music Production: Larissa Luz
Stills: I Hate Flash

@saramayspary Sara Spary is a freelance journalist based in London. She's been a reporter for eight years, covering advertising and consumer brands.