The Berklee West African Drum and Dance Ensemble, under the direction of Joe Galeota, associate professor of percussion, presents Ghana: A Music Landscape. The group collaborates with top Ghanaian performers and special guests Bernard Woma, master of the gyil (African xylophone); and renowned dancer Nani Agbeli, to highlight the traditional music that is vibrant among Ghana’s 79-plus language and cultural groups, from the sub-Saharan caravan routes sweeping the Savannah, to the thick Ashanti forests.
The 15-member ensemble is comprised of a diverse group of students with a common love of African music, dance, and culture. Director Galeota has led an exchange program in Ghana for the past 11 years where students have stayed in villages and learned traditional drum and dance from local masters. They have had the opportunity to study under Woma at the Dagara Arts and Music Center, and with Agbeli at the Dagbe Cultural Center. Says Galeota, “Nani and Bernard are like part of our family. We’ve been grateful to have learned from them and we’re further developing that relationship by bringing them here since they both now live in this country.”
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Added by MargotBerklee on October 22, 2008