Members of Kikayambe teach children about West African culture in a colourful and musical way. Kikayambe will perform Nov. 26 at the Cleland Theatre as part of Children’s Showcase.                                Submitted photo

Members of Kikayambe teach children about West African culture in a colourful and musical way. Kikayambe will perform Nov. 26 at the Cleland Theatre as part of Children’s Showcase. Submitted photo

Children’s Showcase features West African culture and drumming

Kikeyambay, a four person drumming and dance group from Victoria, is performing in Penticton

Both children and adults will have a chance to learn about West African culture and drumming this Sunday.

Kikeyambay, a four person drumming and dance group from Victoria, will be at the Cleland Theatre for the second instalment of the Children’s Showcase.

In the morning prior to the children’s show, which starts at 2 p.m., master drummer Alseny Michel Diallo will teach two workshops for adults using the djembe and dundun drums.

Following the workshops children will get a glimpse into West African culture through a music filled journey filled with colour and dazzling dances.

“We perform a cultural story of what it was like in the village and the story of how they farmed and produced enough food for the year,” Ilana Moon, one of the group’s founding members said. “Traditionally the community would be out drumming and singing and all this while the people were farming. The whole village is a part of what happens.”

Moon has performed in the African world beat music scene for over 20 years and even operated her own dance company called Dancingmoon Multicultural Arts Dance Company.

She’s played in a number of bands including Jambanja Marimba Band which performed at a private show for Oprah Winfrey in 2007.

She’s performed at hundreds of schools through the Artstarts program, a non-profit organization that brings professional artists into B.C. schools.

At one point she travelled to West Africa to expand and study the art form. While in Guinea, she met Diallo. They fell in love and were married.

“I went over there and while there I met him in a village. He’s been drumming since he was 12 years old. Over there it’s sort of like everybody does some form of drumming or dance. It’s just around and all the kids do it. They start forming kid performance groups when they’re small. Kids don’t have lots of toys. They have what they have and they just make instruments and perform,” she said.

Moon said when the couple met, Diallo was performing in three ballets, which are drumming and dance groups in Africa.

“It’s a very dedicated thing there. People who are really successful over there are the artists. They’re the people that leave Africa,” she said. “People come from all over the world to learn West African drumming and dancing. They’re very famous for their strength and variety.”

The children’s show includes a number of dances and colourful costumes. Moon said several children will be chosen from the audience to participate in the show.

“The whole idea with the show is we are going to teach kids about the instruments and how important the instruments are to village life and the culture. We want the kids to go away humming and singing these rhythm,” she said.

Adults interested in taking part in the workshops can buy tickets at Tumbleweed Gallery or Tickets are $20 for one workshop or $35 for both.The Participants must have their own drum for the djembe workshop, while a limited number of dunduns are available.

Tickets for the Children’s Showcase performance starting at 2 p.m. are available at Tumbleweed Gallery, Penticton Arts Council office, Oliver Veterinary Hospital and online at Tickets can also be purchased at the door. The Children’s Showcase Society is a non-profit organization that has made quality live performances accessible to Okanagan families for more than 30 years.

Just Posted

Skeena MLA Ellis Ross. (Photo by Peter Versteege)
BC Liberal leadership candidate condemns ‘senseless violence’ of Okanagan church fires

Skeena MLA Ellis Ross says reconciliation isn’t about revenge for past tragedies

(Black Press file photo)
EDITORIAL: Curtailing attempts at scams

The true total of losses from all scams and frauds could be much higher than the figures on file

Penticton Indian Band Chief Greg Gabriel speaks to the Sacred Hearts Catholic Church burning down early Monday morning, June 21, 2021. (Monique Tamminga Western News)
Penticton band chief condemns suspicious burning of 2 Catholic churches

Both Catholic church fires are deemed suspicious, says RCMP

(Drive BC photo)
Vehicle incident closes Highway 3 east of Osoyoos

Drive BC says to avoid the area until the road is clear

Osoyoos chef Murray McDonald was ecstatic upon realizing he scored the $1 million guaranteed prize in the June 2, 2021 Lotto 6/49 draw. (Contributed)
Osoyoos chef ecstatic after bagging $1 million Lotto 6/49 win

Chef Murray McDonald was at home and ready to doze off to sleep when he got a text from his wife

The border crossing into the United States is seen during the COVID-19 pandemic in Lacolle, Que. on February 12, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Paul Chiasson
VIDEO: Border quarantine to soon lift for fully vaccinated Canadians

Eligible travellers must still take multiple COVID-19 tests

Chilliwack secondary school’s principal is apologizing after a quote equating graduation with the end of slavery in the U.S. was included in the 2020-2021 yearbook. (Screenshot from submitted SnapChat)
B.C. student’s yearbook quote equates grad to end of slavery; principal cites editing error

Black former student ‘disgusted’ as CSS principal apologizes for what is called an editing error

A coroner’s inquest will be taking place at the Capitol Theatre in Port Alberni for the next week. (ELENA RARDON / ALBERNI VALLEY NEWS)
Teen B.C. mom who died following police custody recalled as ‘friend to many’

Police sent Jocelyn George to hospital after intoxication had gone ‘beyond the realm’ of normal detox

FILE - In this Nov. 29, 2020, file photo, Las Vegas Raiders defensive end Carl Nassib leaves the field after an NFL football game against the Atlanta Falcons in Atlanta. Nassib on Monday, June 21, 2021, became the first active NFL player to come out as gay. Nassib announced the news on Instagram, saying he was not doing it for the attention but because “I just think that representation and visibility are so important.” (AP Photo/John Bazemore, File)
Nassib becomes first active NFL player to come out as gay

More than a dozen NFL players have come out as gay after their careers were over

Former Kamloops security gaurd wants job back after kicking incident caught on video

Rick Eldridge quit when a video surfaced of him kicking a man outside a facility for homeless

People participated in a walk to honour the 215 children found at a former Kamloops residential school, as well as residential school survivors. (Twila Amato/Black Press Media)
Kelowna marks National Indigenous Peoples’ Day with walk to remember Kamloops 215

“Let’s speak the truth and deal with the truth, and heal.”

COVID-19 daily cases reported to B.C. public health, seven-day moving average to June 17, 2021. (B.C. Centre for Disease Control)
B.C.’s COVID-19 infections drop to 90 on Sunday, 45 Monday

Pandemic spread dwindles as 77% of adults receive vaccine

A home on Cameo Drive sustained major damage due to an early morning fire Monday, June 21. (Roger Knox - Morning Star)
UPDATE: Fire sparked during Vernon home renovation

Heavy black smoke from Cameo Drive home, no one inside

The new Civic Memorial Park will incorporate pieces of the 80-year-old arena it replaces. (Artists rendering)
Pieces of Civic Arena reclaimed for new Vernon park

City centre space to incorporate wood from the historic arena

Most Read