Bacchanal de Afrique 2016 Casting Call

Bacchanal de Afrique Open Call/Submissions Requested
Looking for Performers and Artists of African Heritage (Individuals or Groups) who specialize in any of the following dance/music styles:

Afrobeat, Azonto, Breaking, Bounce, Chicago Stepping, Coupe Decale, Dancehall/Daggering, Funana, Jive, Kizomba, Kompa, Lindy Hop, Locking, Ndombolo, Memphis Jookin, Merengue, Pantsula, Popping, Punta, Rumba, Tap, Salsa, Samba-(Axé, Reggae, Pagode), New Orleans Second-Line, Soca, Turf, Vogue, Waacking, Zouk.

About Bacchanal de Afrique
Afro-Urban Dance and Music Extravaganza. From Azonto to Zouk; Coupe Decale to Hiphop; Dancehall to Vogue; Afro-house to Soukous and more. Dancers, DJs and Musicians come together for a night of true afro street and club revelry showcasing the diversity of Africa and her Diaspora. A light-hearted and high-energy exchange of Afro-Urban dance and music styles.

Bacchanal de Afrique will be showcasing events in February 2016. Selected performers and artists should be available in the Bay Area for rehearsals and meetings leading up to and in February 2016. Interested parties should complete this form.

Tiguidi @ the Oakland Museum

I don't know why I took so long to pop this one out. But last night, I had to make the Tiguidi happen. I'll follow this up with saying that last night's class was 'Simply Pleasurable'. Got to see some beautiful African faces getting down including my sisters in dance Holly and Tola.. giving it! Everyone was just really vibing, and I was so geeked. We kept it mellow channeling the Naija, Azonto & Kuduro sounds, and mainly getting down to the hit by Tour 2 Garde 'Tiguidi'

This song AND video to me is so legitimately Afro-Urban, spanning various African aesthetics and sounds. It just is RIGHT. I love how they rep a variety of fashion and dance styles while keeping it chill on the main groove. If you know half of anything about me, you'll know that because I am so geeked about lots of Afro-derived sounds, I love this display of Pan-Africanism. AND The 'tiguidi move' is so simple yet dynamic; and you can add your own spin: club style, sabar style, coupe style, soukouss style...and the list goes on. I could do this for hours, I imagine. A certified party jam.

Tour 2 Garde's precursor jam Makassa is of course a banger too.  Anyway here's what happened Sep 25 at the Oakland Museum Plaza:
  1. Oyari by Dr. Sid ft. Tiwa Savage (Nigeria) 
  2. Adonai Remix by Sarkodie ft. Castro (Ghana)
  3. Tokê Nangô by DJ Branquinho Feat. Os Banah (Angola)
  4. Tiguidi by Tour 2 Garde (Côte d’Ivoire)
  5. Alaji by DJ Ramatoulaye (Côte d’Ivoire)

A New Season Falleth Upon Us

Okay. I'm excited but also a bit freaked out that we're here. Middle of September and all of a sudden all this time I had doing 'nothing' is officially coming to a close. Well here's some of the excitement coming up:

Sep 14- Global Street Drum with BoomShake
Sep 15- Final Semba Classes with Danca Makezu
Sep 19- Insane Afro-Urban Dance with Queens of AlterEgo
Sep 25- Me turning it up at the Oakland Museum as per usual: 6:30-7pm
Sep 29- Global Street Drum for WOC with BoomShake & Regina Califa
Oct 3- With MUCH GRIEF and Saltiness: Saying Goodbye to Danca Makezu of Kizomba Glory

Get with some or ALL of it!! And stay tuned for more

About Last Night & FAQs

Friday Sept 4 at the OMCA was fun! There were a bunch of African sistas in the house so the Afro-Urban vibe was fully loaded. I'm looking forward to the next one; I'll be there on September 25th 6:30pm at the Plaza, and this time I'm going to even turn it up a notch on the crowd. A few answers to questions that I got A LOT of last night and usually do:

1. Where do you teach?
I do workshops and residencies as the excitement and opportunity comes about, unfortunately I do not teach regularly. When I do I'll usually post them them here and send out a mailing list, to which you should subscribe (scroll down side bar right) if you want to be in the loop. I also throw and attend parties or events that feature DJs and the music I play. I also just started an FB page where I aim to share more of these workshops, events, and music of the Afro-Urban scene. 
and if you want a weekly dose of the sound and style check out 
Afro Dance Fitness with Ana La Belle on Tuesday 6:30-7:30pm at In the Groove Studios on 14th St. Oakland

2. What is Afro-Urban Dance?
Afro-Urban dance is dance, music, fashion and visuals originate from people of African descent in the continent and diaspora that exists in diverse settings such as at home, streets and clubs/parties.

3. What is this Music?
At various classes and workshops I talk about what songs/styles I'm sharing. In general, the list of what I consider Afro-Urban is pretty endless and global. Usually the sounds you're hearing are from currently trending popular artists in the African music scene. The styles include but are not limited to Coupe Decale | Azonto | Dancehall | Soca | Naija | Kwaito | Ndombolo | Afrobeat | Afro-House | Hip Hop | & More

On Sep 4th these are the tracks that I played
  1. Adonai Remix by Sarkodie ft. Castro (Ghana)
  2. Tokê Nangô by DJ Branquinho Feat. Os Banah (Angola)
  3. Oyari by Dr. Sid ft. Tiwa Savage (Nigeria)
  4. Kababeleke by Serge Beynaud (Côte d’Ivoire)

Photo by Eduardo De Ugarte
Not that I'm not always excited to do this. But I'm REALLY excited to do this one. First dance class post pregnancy, post baby delivery. I'm celebrating slowly gaining full use of my mid-section.


Two dates this month

Sep 4th & Sep 25th
with Nkei Oruche & D. Fuse
6:30-7:00pm,  Free, family friendly & fun (for sure).

How we Live....

Watching these Ghetto Kids Triplets videos really does something for me. Makes me miss childhood and also remember that I dream of traveling the world to just dance. I feel like I got to have the world come to me, and always have grown up learning dance informally through videos (back in the day it would have to be a VHS I luckily found somewhere), meeting people who taught me about the dance from their neck of the hoods, and traveling/going to clubs/parties in various parts of the US. I have this tingle still that it would be something to actually travel and be in these places. But until then (if ever), I love having access to the various manifestations and expressions of African/Black Dance whether it be rural, town or urban. 

For a while now these Ghetto Kid videos stay being my happy place. On the grimiest of days...two doses keeps the hopelessness away.

Drumming with BoomShake

Join me and my BoomShake! Family for summer music

Friday July 24th 
Join the BoomShake crew for a fun half-hour of street drumming action.
6:30-7:00PM | Oakland Museum Plaza
All-Ages | FREE | RSVP

Sunday, July 26 & August 23PLAY IN THE PARK
Join us for singing, drumming and movement for all ages, but also have time for free play and hangout. Please see details below. Looking forward to see you all!
10:30am- 1:00pm | Mosswood Park, Oakland
Baby (0-5years) & Family Music: 11:00-11:30am
Kids (6+) & Adult Drumming: 11:45-12:45pm
All-Ages | FREE | RSVP

More Free Afro- Urban + Track List Recap (OMCA)

May 29 at the Oakland Museum Friday Nights event was hella fun! It was set off with a DJ set by Juan G (check out his Afrobeatz mixes), who transitioned to some Naija Beats right before the mini-class, so the mood was right. The dancers worked it out! I was so juiced... it's been a minute since I got down like that, so right now my hips and thighs are singing for it!

Shaneeka and I will be back again on Friday July 24th 6:30-7:00pm on the Afro-Urban dance love...but BEFORE that I'll be doing some street drumming with the BoomShake crew on June 26. So save those dates and join us!

June 26- BoomShake Street Drumming
July 24th- Afro-Urban Dance

Here's the re-cap and dances/track list from May 29
This session I wanted to keep moves simple and fun/freestyle high, so we quickly went through a few different moves from various sounds, and then put it all together for a quick choreo. Amazing how much you can do in half an hour.
  1.  Warm-up: Collabo by P. Square (Nigeria)
  2. Whip it/Nae: Watch Me by Silento (USA)
  3. Shoki: Shoki Remix by Lil Kesh ft. Davido (Nigeria)
  4. Azonto/Akayida: Adonai Remix by Sarkodie ft. Castro (Ghana)
  5. Kuduro Moves: Tokê Nangô by DJ Branquinho Feat. Os Banah (Angola)
  6. Combo/Choreo: Shake Body by Skales (Nigeria)