All Grade Levels, Community Dance & Drum Organization, Flexible Programming Offered
DISCIPLINE // Traditional African Dance, Drum and Music
GRADE LEVELS // K-12
ORGANIZATION DESCRIPTION // Through classes, performances and workshops Djebe Bara Community Dance and Drum provides opportunities to participate in and appreciate African musical arts in Missoula. Djebe Bara envisions a community where people participate in joyful celebration through the understanding, practice and embodiment of African musical culture. Djebe Bara values honoring African traditions, enriching community, education and learning, shared leadership and responsibility, cultivating individual growth, inclusiveness and communication.
Djebe Bara, created in 2008 by Missoula community members, explores African dance, drum, music and song from a variety of traditions including, but not exclusive to, Guinea, Senegal, Mali, Zimbabwe and South Africa. Djebe Bara community dance classes are offered every Thursday from 6-7:00 p.m. in the Barn Movement Studio, located at 2926 South 3rd St. West. The suggested donation is $5. Dance classes have live drumming and a variety of dance instructors. Classes encourage self-expression, voice, and participation. All levels of dancers are welcome. Profits from the classes are used to bring professional teachers to Missoula and maintain instruments.
PROGRAM DESCRIPTION // As a SPARK! Collaborating Organization, Djebe Bara offers several options for schools. The performance group is dedicated to lively and engaging shows incorporating traditional instruments and costumes. The rate is $500 per hour and Djebe Bara can do shortened performances for school events (fifteen minutes for $125 or thirty minutes for $250). Schools that offer a residency to SPARK! Teaching Artists who are members of Djebe Bara may hire the performance group to be integrated into an end of residency performance, for example, a school assembly or a community concert featuring a performance by students along with Djebe Bara. SPARK! Teaching Artists who are members of Djebe Bara include Heidi Waegele and Hillary Welzenbach.
Schools or after school organizations also have the option of scheduling a single day field trip to The Barn Movement Studio during or after school. At the studio, students will participate in a beginner dance class designed to meet curriculum goals. The Barn is located directly across from Hawthorne School. Members of Djebe Bara who are SPARK! Teaching Artists would love to work with schools on site at The Barn. Additionally, if a school is interested in hosting a performance or class with a Master African drummer and/or dancer, Djebe Bara hosts guest teachers periodically. Please contact Djebe Bara if a school is interested in having a Master Teacher visit a school; we will notify interested schools as soon as possible and do our best to coordinate the visit of the guest artist in a time period that works for schools.
Oumar Keita, a native of Guinea, West Africa, is a member of Djebe Bara. He moved to Missoula with his wife Heidi Waegele in the fall of 2016. Oumar plays traditional instruments like the bolon, gnoni and N’gongoma, which accompany his singing. Oumar was a musician in the nationally recognized Ballet Saamato of Conakry, Guinea. He also played with Wofa percussion in Conakry. Primarily a dundun player, Oumar is also a dancer and djembe player. Oumar is passionate about sharing the Guinea cultural tradition of music and dance with children and if a school would like Oumar to take the lead for a Djebe Bara performance just ask!
If a school is working on a fixed budget, please do not hesitate to call Djebe Bara member Sarah McClain to make a request or proposal.
PRIMARY CONTACT // Sarah McClain
ADDRESS // 2926 South 3rd St West (The Barn Movement Studio)