What is Neo-African Drums ‘n Dance?
Neo-African Drums ‘n Dance is a La Salle University performance ensemble which combines compelling neo-traditional African  rhythms, vigorous choreography and exciting visual scenery to bring thrilling excitement to on and off campus audiences.

How does the music sound?
The music makes you tap your feet and swing your seat! The tempos are mostly fast with high, medium and low pitched authentic African drums combined in rousing polyrhythms. The drums are complemented by lively rhythms on shakers and bells.

How do the dancers look and move?
Wearing traditional headwraps, skirts and bodysuits while barefoot, the dancers use large sweeping and circular motions by extending their arms and legs to occupy sizable areas of stage space.

Are there other elements to the stage presentation?
Yes: 1.  we have a color guard who performs invigorating choreography using the original flag of Neo-African Drums ‘n Dance, 2. we have an 8 foot tall body puppet who roams the stage area and is named “Neo” and 3. we have a multicolored background stage set of animals, trees, performers and an African mask.

What are the objectives of Neo-African Drums ‘n Dance?
The members are able to: 1. perform in original drumming and dance styles, 2. demonstrate techniques for playing various types of percussion instruments, 3. exhibit diverse choreography, 4. demonstrate various aspects of stagecraft such as scene creation, 5. learn how to listen, lead and follow as musicians and dancers, 6. demonstrate the value and methods of cooperative teamwork and 7. learn and demonstrate the requirements necessary to put together and perform public concerts.

Who can be involved?
Anyone in the La Salle community demonstrating dedication to Neo-African Drums ‘n Dance through attendance, personal practice, group rehearsal, care of the group’s property and teamwork.

What are some of the results?
Neo-African Drums ‘n Dance is a catalyst for generating enthusiastic interest and participation in campus music activities as students, faculty and staff see and hear members they know in an entirely new and inspiring context. For the group members, they receive music, dance and stagecraft instruction not offered elsewhere on campus.

What has Neo-African Drums ‘n Dance acccomplished since being founded in  October 2005?
Lotsa t’ings, mon! We were founded as Neo-African Drums but because our music was so inspiring we were asked by other students if they could join our group as dancers. So within days of starting, we expanded to Neo-African Drums ‘n Dance. Since that time our growing look and sound has taken us many places and helped us receive a prestigious University award.

Fall 2009
During the fall of 2009 we have the following performances scheduled: 1. Thursday, September 3rd: Performing Arts Night at 9 p.m. in the Dan Rodden Theater, 2. Thursday, October 8th: World Cultures Fair at 12:30 p.m. 0n the Union Patio, 3. Saturday, October 3rd: Family Weekend at 12:30 p.m. 0n the Quadrangle, 4. Friday, October 9th: International Scholar’s Reception at 5 p.m. at the University of Pennsylvania’s Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology, and 5. Thursday, November 19th: Celebrating Cultures at 8 p.m. at Arcadia University.

Spring 2009
During the spring of 2009 we gave the following performances:: 1. Wednesday, January 21st: Penn vs. La Salle basketball game in the Tom Gola Arena, 2. Tuesday, February 10th: Black History Month at Blue and Gold Dining Hall, 3. Tuesday, February 17th: Black History Month at Treetops Dining Hall, 4. Thursday, March 19th: Health Fair in the Union Ballroom, 5. Thursday, March 26th: University Night at the Kimmel Center for the Performing Arts, 6. Friday, April 10th: International Dinner at Arcadia University.

Fall 2008
During the fall of 2008, we gave the following performances: 1.
Friday, September 9th: Performing Arts Night at 8 p.m. in the Dan Rodden
Theater, 2. Thursday, October 2nd: World Cultures Fair 0n the Union
Patio, 3. Saturday, October 4th: Family Weekend 0n the Quadrangle,
4. Thursday, October 9th: Requiem 0n the Quadrangle (an original music
composition featuring live drumming and dancing combined with electronic
music) and 5. Friday, October 17th: International Scholar’s Reception
at the University of Pennsylvania’s Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology,
6. Monday, November 17th: Taste of Culture at Treetops Dining Hall, and
7. Tuesday, November 18th: Celebrating Cultures at Arcadia University.

Summer 2008
During the summer of 2008: we gave a rousing performance at Backstage to an enthusiastic and participating audience that saw many of its members join us onstage to play instruments and dance.

Spring 2008
During the spring of 2008: 1. we passed the milestone of having been an active student organization for three years and thereby had our status changed by Student Activities, 2. we held an Artists’ Party for Lasallians who were musicians, dancers, fashionistas, literati, architects, painters, sculptors, culinaries, theaterers, photogs or digitalers and 2. we performed: for the Multicultural Show at Dan Rodden Theater, for Black History Month Observance at Blue and Gold Dining Hall, for taste of Philadelphia at Treetops Dining Hall and for The Health Fair in the Union Ballroom.

Fall 2008
During the fall of 2007, we had these performances: International Scholar’s Reception at the University of Pennsylvania’s Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology, Digital Arts Conference in the Union Ballroom, Shake It Up! at Treetops Dining Hall, Blue and Gold Dining Hall and Olney Lobby (Shake It Up! was a multi-media student-faculty collaboration), Stadium Jam at the Football Stadium, World Culture’s Fair on the Quadrangle, and Performing Arts Night and Family Weekend in the Dan Rodden Theater.

Summer 2007
During the summer of 2007: 1. our website was constructed, 2. we built an 8 foot tall walking body puppet named “Neo”,  3. added to our stage set (see Summer 2006) by painting an African mask, a banner with our logo, an African drummer and an African dancer and 4. we were the only Lasallian performing group to give a performance on campus.

Spring 2007
During the spring of 2007: 1. the popularity of the ensemble on campus has been an inspiration to schedule a music course which was fully enrolled entitled Drumming Cultures, 2. we performed at Backstage, B & G Dining Hall, Collaborative Arts Week and the Union Ballroom for Health Fair; and 3. our pan-African colored flag made its debut.

Fall 2006 (Partial listing of our events calendar)
During the fall of 2006: 1. we entertained the incoming freshman at the Stadium Jam on the new football field, 2. we gave an instrumental hands-on workshop at Backstage for more than 200 freshman First Year Odyssey students, 3. we represented the University at an important state-wide ACT 101 (academic) conference in Harrisburg, PA, 4. we organized a first-of-its kind multi-media collaboration within the Fine Arts Department where a professor of art used a six foot by six foot canvas to paint us while we performed before almost 200 students 5. we were featured performers of World Cultures Day.

Summer 2006
During the summer of 2006, we were the only Lasallian performing group to give a performance in the Union Food Court, and we constructed and painted a large, visually engaging mobile stage set that includes a rhinoceros, lion, giraffe, zebra and forest scene.

Spring 2006
During the spring of 2006: 1. we were awarded the coveted Chevron from The Shield of Lasallian Leadership for upholding and establishing tradition in the La Salle University community, 2. performed off campus at the center city Philadephia Art Around Gallery for an exhibition by a renown Philadelphian muralist, 3. performed on campus at the Art Museum, Backstage, Treetops, Blue and Gold Dining Hall and for music class demonstrations.

Fall 2005
During the fall of 2005: 1. October 4th – the announcement was made to assemble a neo-traditional African drumming ensemble, 2. October 13th – we convened our first meeting and elected our first officers and 3. December – we acquired our first instruments.

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