World Music Concert: Tracing Music from Africa to the American Continents

WorldMusicPosterTuesday, March 6, 2007
8:00 p.m. – Weiss Center, Rubendall Recital Hall
Osubi I. Craig, traditional West African percussionist, performing artist, musical accompanist, arts educator and advocate

1:30 p.m. – 2:45 p.m.
Students and the public are invited to the World Music Class led by Professor Wlodarski
Weiss Center – Rm. 235

The group breaks down the composition of rhythmic music in Africa and demonstrates its direct influence on modern American music from African drums to Hip-Hop. The program continues with a musical examination of the links between Afro-Brazilian percussion, Afro-Cuban percussion, and West African percussion, which highlights the wonderful sounds of Africa found in the Caribbean and South America and how they connect back to Africa.
Co-sponsored by the music department and Dean of Students Office

About the Group

Osubi Imo Craig promotes African-American culture through his work as a percussionist, artist, accompanist and advocate for the Pan-African cultural movement. He is also an educator, as he teaches audiences through workshops, demonstrations, and performances.
As a staff musician in the Alvin Ailey American Dance School of Arts in Education program, Craig has spent extensive time working with children. He has been an artist in the Philly Pops, Lincoln Center Institute, and NJPAC educational programs. Craig has served as both the artistic and musical director of the Dromatala Hand-and-Stick Percussion Ensemble, a group focused on West African percussion and dance in Philadelphia, and as the associate director of Prophecy Dance Works, based out of New York. In 2005, Craig was named to the esteemed Pennsylvania Artist on Tour Roster.
Craig has performed in events such as the African Street Festival and Dance Africa, both in New York City, and has traveled to both Switzerland and Holland to perform in the Montreux Jazz Festival and the North Sea Jazz Festival. In 2001, Craig planned and piloted a trip for 24 Dromatala artists to the 21st Annual Festival De Caribe and Festivals of Fire in Santiago de Cuba.

A student of traditional West African dance since 1991, Nzinga Metzger is a member of the Kulu Mele African American Dance Ensemble in Philadelphia. Metzger has also explored the traditional singing of Oriki, songs dedicated to the divinities of the Yoruba faith. She received her master’s degree in history from Temple University.

Kwame A. Ross is an educator, choreographer and musician that has done extensive work in dance and anthropology in Nigeria, Haiti, Trinidad, as well as countries in Europe. For the past three years, he has been commissioned by Florida A&M University to choreograph a work on Orchesis Dance Company. He is a recipient of several awards, including the 1997 Jerome Foundation grant. He is currently a faculty member at the Long Island University and Lincoln Center Institute and in the spring will join the faculty of the Broadway Dance Center in New York City.

As a lecturer, private vocal instructor, and recording artist, Charles Vincent Burwell has been involved with many artists and organizations. Burwell was introduced to music at the age of seven and has since been successful in learning to play over 20 instruments. To date, Burwell has served with such groups as the renowned FAMU Singers, the Alvin Ailey American Dance Center, Prophecy Dance Works, Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival, Lincoln Center Institute, National Dance Institute and Urban Bush Women.

Richard C. Robinson Jr. is a cultural arts educator of African and Latin folkloric music and masquerade dancing. He is the executive director of both the Dromatala of Philadelphia and Dzifa Mask Dance Theater. He performs with numerous African folkloric companies in Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and Delaware, including Doc Gibbs, the musical director for the “Emeril Live!” cooking show. He serves as The Prophecy Music Project’s resident Chakaba dancer.

“Continuing the Conversation”

Come to The Clarke Forum’s student led follow-up discussion
Wednesday, March 7, 2007
4:30 p.m. – The Clarke Forum, 249 W. Louther Street.
Refreshments provided.