- Now that I am almost finished my degree, I am able to take on some more freelance work…this week was busy and very special and reminds me why I am so committed to drumming with others. The week started with workshops in two family shelters, drumming with toddlers, kids & moms. They enjoyed themselves and gave me a beautiful handmade card to take home.
I also gave two drumming sessions to youth in the Young Voices Can! Summer Experience at Ashbury College. This amazing organization focuses on reducing both Islamophobia and anti-Semitism, as well as preventing marginalized youth from becoming radicalized. Their vision is to foster understanding, patience, open communication and co-existence by teaching conflict resolution and leadership skills, and enabling youth to come together for an extended stay filled with dialogue, reflection, learning, team building, self-awareness – and, of course, fun! My drumming workshops used rhythmic patterns that modeled dialogue between the youth. We had a great time and ended up performing our Kpanlogo segment for the Board and invited guests at the sharing on the final presentation. We are looking at a future partnership between Young Voices Can and Baobab Youth! I am looking forward to that collaboration.
Probably the most unusual gig this week was being asked to be a guest judge at the Poetry Slam that was on the opening night of the House of Paint Urban Arts Festival. Hosted by Just Jamaal & John Akpata, the evening was an incredible showcase of talent. Probably the highlight for me was an impromptu performance by one of the other judges, PrufRock Shadowrunner of one of his most famous poems called “Countdown”. Check it out here you won’t be disappointed! Needless to say, I did not perform spoken word poetry 😉 but I learned a lot and had an amazing time. Sometimes depending on freelancing for a lot of my income can be challenging, but weeks like this one make it totally worthwhile.