Monday, November 08, 2010

[Wadabo_updates] Reminder: NEW Class tonight: Contemporary West African w/Michelle Bach-Coulibaly

Reminder that tonight is the first night of Michelle's new contemporary west-african class. Details below


Monday nights
YWCA (Central Sq)
7 Temple St
Cambridge MA

An on-going study of Contemporary African dance class with: 
Michelle Bach-Coulibaly (see bio below) and Moussa Troare from Mali West Africa.

Class description:
This class will engage each student in a rigorous and detailed physical decoding of Mande Dance and Performance traditions from Mali, West Africa. These  life-cycle, celebratory dances are from the Bambara, Somono, Khassonke, Minianka, Malinke, and Wasalou cultural groups that emphasize Mande concepts of youthfulness, brightness, luminosity, coolness, stability, flexibility, strength, balance and communal healing. Each dance will be taught with a focus upon its cultural context and place in defining a National Patrimony. 

Each class will begin with a thorough warm-up that emphasizes building strength, flexibility, and endurance to efficiently work in the style and vitality of West African Dance, Music and Performance.  The warm-up floor and standing barre is based in Yoga, Pilates, Somatic Studies, and corrective alignment practices.The dances taught are from the Mande region of Mali, with repertory from Contemporary Malian ballet companies including Danse Kelete, Ballet National, District du Bamako, and Troupe Komee Josee.
Michelle is the co-founder and director of the Yeredon Centre for Cultural Preservation and Social Engagement in Mali, West Africa. With Seydou Coulibaly, Michelle Bach-Coulibaly directs cultural exchange and service learning trips to Mali every year with three-five week sessions happening over Winter Break, during planting season in the Spring and two different sessions in the Summer.  The Yeredon Centre is in partnership with The Djoumanzana Orphanage and Community center, The Kafo Association, Madame Togo Orphanage, and numerous NGO's to work on literacy, environmental and public health projects.

Moussa Traore was born and raised in Mali, West Africa. He has been playing the djembe for the past thirty years, and in 1984, after completing a twelve-year apprenticeship, he was deemed a "master" by his teachers, Sega Cisse and Sidiki Bagayogo.  Moussa's teachers are still drumming as Malian elders and are highly respected for their life-long work. For more info on Moussa, please see

For more information please email Alice Heller at or see

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