Black Creativity performances will take place in the Museum’s Main Auditorium from 10:15 to 11:00 a.m. and are suitable for all ages. They are open to the public and free with general admission to the Museum.

Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., An Educated Man

Tuesday, February 7

This dramatic performance by the Roots Theatre Ensemble presents music, songs, theatre and excerpts from Dr. King’s inspiring speeches that brings to life the oppression of African Americans during the Civil Rights Movement. The performance begins during King’s childhood and continues past his tragic death into the 21st century, spreading his message of peaceful protest and equality.

Music of Bob Marley

Wednesday, February 8

Bob Marley has been called “the first Third World superstar.” He was one of the most charismatic performers of our time and his legacy continues to inspire. RDII Reggae Band presents a retrospective program highlighting Marley's musical and historical contributions that encompass every aspect in the rise of Jamaican music, from ska to contemporary reggae.

African Villages Folktales 1

Thursday, February 9

The actors of Hot Silk Productions perform adaptations from famous African-American tales including “The Lion and the Woman,”“The Tug of War” and “The Frog Who Wanted to be a Singer.”Through storytelling, body movement, music, and dramatization, the small cast of actors portray various animals that teach us about human nature and the African experience.

One World Dance

Friday, February 10

One World Dance is a community of artists who live and embrace the principle of “One World,” where diverse cultural traditions form bonds of unity. The multiracial company infuses the senses with depth and celebration while presenting dances that challenge cultural barriers and create a global community.

African Villages Folktales 2

Monday, February 13

The actors of Hot Silk Productions perform adaptations from famous African-American tales including “Why Mosquitoes Buzz in People's Ears,”“Mufaro's Beautiful Daughters” and “How the Snake Got his Rattle.” Through storytelling, body movement, music, and dramatization, the small cast of actors portray various animals that teach us about human nature and the African experience.

Monkeba: Griot of Senegal

Tuesday, February 14

Through storytelling and solo performances on the traditional stringed “kora,”we are introduced to the roles of the griot (poet, musician and historian) in ancient and modern society. Singers, dancers and percussionists playing a variety of indigenous instruments are featured in the ensemble. As a finale, audience members are brought on stage to create music with the master musicians.

Largest African Empire

Wednesday, February 15

This program features the music and dance culture of the Manding Empire—the largest in African history—and is centered in the city of Timbuktu. Performer Money Taylor transcends colonial borders to profile the cultural intelligence of this great civilization.

Traditional Jamaican Music and Dance

Thursday, February 16

Most of the world is familiar with Jamaican music through the work of legend, Bob Marley. Jamaica’s tradition of great music spans more than 400 years, dating back to the arrival of West Africans in Jamaica. Jamaican Ensemble takes you to the heart of the island where most of the traditional dance, music and culture thrived and are still practiced today.

King Syncopation

Friday, February 17

King Syncopation is a performance that not only informs audience members about ragtime music, but also inspires them to seek greatness in life. Internationally acclaimed Reginald Robinson performs piano ragtime and discusses how syncopation is “king” in popular American dance and music. The piano “phenom” is said to possess the spirit of legendary ragtime composer, Scott Joplin, and The New York Times dubbed Robinson “one of the most important composers of
modern ragtime.”

Deeply Rooted Dance Ensemble

Tuesday, February 21

Deeply Rooted Dance Ensemble performs works from its existing repertoire as well as newly created works. These dances are based in the traditional contemporary dance idioms and themes that speak to the human condition.

Motown Alive

Wednesday, February 22

Motown combined rhythm and blues, gospel, swing and pop to form a unique new sound that took the world by storm! During this performance, Motown Alive plays Motown favorites and gives information about the history of this important musical movement.

Birthplace of Rhythm

Thursday, February 23

The Birthplace of Rhythm is an entertaining exploration of percussion around the world. John Knecht, a “rhythm anthropologist,” takes listeners on a tour of drumming and singing across the continents. Distinctive rhythms of Africa, Asia, Europe, the Middle East and the Caribbean will be performed on native drums from each region. Audience members will be invited to participate in the rhythm making
process.This upbeat performance celebrates the place where rhythm was born: inside the heart of every human being that has ever walked the Earth.

African Village Folktales 3

Friday, Febr uary 24

The actors of Hot Silk Productions perform adaptations from famous African-American tales including “Man and Woman,” “The Lion in the Well” and “Dancing to the River.” Through storytelling, body movement, music, and dramatization, the small cast of actors portray various animals that teach us about human nature and the African experience.

Images of Africa I

Monday, February 27

It is said that one should visit East Africa to explore wildlife and ecology and to West Africa to see people and indigenous art forms. Kopano Performing Arts Company celebrates the indigenous cultures of West Africa with dancing, drumming and proverbs that educate viewers about traditional art forms, history and religion. Blended into this mix is information about posture, health, breathing and nutrition.

Images of Africa II: How the King Created the Djembe

Tuesday, February 28

In the beginning, there was the balaphone, the coitiro drum and the djun-djun drum. All of these were and are instruments played with sticks. The King of Mali wanted a different drum— an instrument that could be played without sticks yet still sound beautiful. Through music, song and dance, Kopano Performing Arts Company tells the tale of how the world's loudest hand drum was created.

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