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Interview: Caroline Lindsey Churba on The African Encounter

The African Encounter is a distinguished event that has taken place every year since 2002. It blends the Biodanza dance form with meditation, relaxation, and creates a sense of global community that has a profound influence on all participants. 

The celebrated event has been held in several different locations around South Africa, each with an emphasis on connecting to the natural world. 

Participants are given the opportunity to use dance as a means of expressing their emotional state and experiencing happiness. Attendees come from all around the world to share in this unique adventure. Biodanza is a system of self-development utilizing music, movement, and positive feelings to deepen self-awareness

The founder o fThe Africa Encounter, Caroline Lindsey Churba, talked to us recently about the event, which she established and has continued to develop over the years. 

You will find our full interview below.

Please tell us about how the AFRICA annual event first started.  

I had worked worldwide and in Africa for years and I wanted to bring all my friends together. 

During a class in the Netherlands, I found myself looking at fifty tall people, all crammed into a tiny room, and I said something like, “You guys don’t fit in your country, you need to come to dance in Africa!”

That was the very start of the idea. It has since become a major event with hundreds of attendees.  

How has the event changed over time? How has its reach grown?

I think people need to be together in nature, and the festival gives them the chance to do this for four days, dancing under the African sky. 

Word of mouth has helped a lot to grow the event, and the trip is also excellent value for the cost.

Above all, people experience life-changing moments, and I think that’s why so many people keep coming back. 

Tell us a bit about your involvement with this event and your continuing role. 

I started the event in 2002 and I’ve helped to ensure its quality, so the international reach of the festival is always high. We have always made sure that top world facilitators lead the event.

You’ve seen so many people take part. What is the most inspiring part of this event?

The welcoming of people from all over the world. People travel over mountains, deserts, and oceans, they travel halfway around the world to be there, and once everyone arrives it’s just magic. It’s a wonderful feeling of community. 

Do you enjoy seeing so many people engaging in the art of dance as a group?

Definitely. To me, it almost feels like performing alchemy. You take these simple elements and make something new and beautiful. 

If you had to choose one trait that separates this event from other dance events, what would it be?

It’s a return to the absolute human origin in Africa. People understand this, and they know they can connect on a deep level of community and friendship. 

You’ve led a prestigious career as the Pioneer who brought Biodanza to English-speaking South Africa. Does this distinguished event help you to maintain your enthusiasm for dance and Biodanza?

There is a huge positive shift from the time they arrive to when they depart. It leaves an indelible mark on each participant. They will always have fond memories of their adventure in Africa and how much their personal-development transformed. 

What would you like to say to anyone who may want to attend this event in the future?

The most important thing is to come to a Biodanza session near you. After putting in some time and experiencing Biodanza, you’ll be ready to join us in Africa for a unique distinguished event that will change your life. 

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