West African Dance! 4-Week Series
Time & Location
About The Event
Four-night series Fridays: March 3, 9, 16, and 23 from 7pm-8:30pm. Includes dance instruction and immersion into culture/history. Last two sessions will be accompanied by West African Drummers. Renew yourself physically, mentally, and spiritually!
ABOUT YOUR DANCERS:
Heather Mitchell is an African Diasporic Dance performing artist and choreographer in the Kalamazoo community for over 12 years. She continues to perform with Rootead Dance Company formally known as Dunuya Drum and Dance. Her work also includes Choreography at Western Michigan University (Oedipus, and Ruined), Kalamazoo College (In the Heights), Portage North Middle School (The Lion King and Aladdin), Teaching Artist with Education for the Arts, as well as several collaborations including Women Empowering Women, Freedom Schools, Caring Network, Wellspring Cory Terry and Dancers, and the Kalamazoo Symphony Orchestra. As a dance artist, Heather has facilitated numerous workshops and classes that sought to connect people of various backgrounds, socioeconomic status, and abilities to the cultural knowledge, pure joy, and sense of community that African Diasporic dance brings. She believes that dance is the language of the spirit and is meant to be shared with her community!
Kama Tai Mitchell is a healer, mama, yogi, doula and dancer. She has spent most of her life claiming and sharing body awareness. A practitioner and teacher of Para Yoga, Kama has also had numerous trainings with many master dance teachers of the African Diaspora. Currently working toward birth doula certification with DONA International, she encourages women to own their bodies and their birth experience. Kama is a strong activist in birth justice, racial equality and mental health awareness. She co-founded and is co-executive director of the nonprofit Rootead, which supports women of color, especially mothers. She is certified in belly binding through the Zulu Birth Project and has training in reflexology and massage. Kama loves nature (especially the ocean), babies and all forms of art.
ABOUT YOUR DRUMMER:
Leah Ivory graduated from Calvin College in Grand Rapids, MI, with a degree in piano performance. She uses her piano skills in ensemble work, and has accompanied choirs at Calvin College, St. Cecilia Music Center, the North American Choral Company, and currently is the assistant director and accompanist for the Grand Rapids Symphony Youth Chorus. On a choir tour to Ghana, West Africa, in 2006, Leah got her first djembe and has been studying traditional West African drum and dance ever since. Leah is committed to learning the djembe from the masters of the tradition in order to help preserve this intricate, complex and unique style of music. She is a Certified Djembe Instructor through the Tam Tam Mandingue Djembe Academy, the world’s leading entity in teaching traditional djembe and dunun rhythms founded by Mamady Keita. Leah has also completed a drum facilitation course in Pune, India, with Varun Venkit, founder of Taal Inc., an organization that aims to positively influence the areas of health and well-being through rhythm, music and the arts.
- West African Dance 4 nights!$96$960$0