Afro-Cuban Music and Dance
Shawn Hennessey and Leana Song introduce the audience to the power and beauty of Afro-Cuban music and dance. Dressed in all white, the world renowned percussionists of Leana Song play traditional Batá drums, congas and cajons, bells and shekeres, all while singing ancient Yoruba songs to the Orishas. Leana Song engages students in Afro-Cuban music and culture through history, rhythm, dance, and song. Students will be on their feet during this rocking BatáRumba dance party!
Pennsylvania Curriculum Standards
(A=Assembly; W=Workshop; R=Residency)
9.1 Production, Performance and Exhibition of Dance, Music, Theatre and Visual Arts A, W, R
9.2 Historical and Cultural Contexts A, W, R
15.4 Learning Through Experience A, W, R
25.3 Pro-Social Relationships with Adults W, R
25.4 Pro-Social Relationships with Peers W, R
Art Form(s): Music, Dance
Genre: African/African-American, Latin/Brazilian
Instrument(s): Percussion, Dance, Voice
Assembly, Workshop, and Residency Offerings
Afro-Cuban Music and Dance Assembly
Shawn Hennessey and Leana Song introduce the audience to the power and beauty of Afro-Cuban music and dance. Dressed in all white, the world renowned percussionists of Leana Song play traditional Batá drums, congas and cajons, bells and shekeres, all while singing ancient Yoruba songs to the Orishas. As they roll through song cycles, rising and falling with intensely hypnotic grooves, the dancers enter, dressed as the specific Orisha the drummers are saluting. After a brief presentation of the history of Afro-Cuban music, Leana Song teaches the audience clapping patterns, and a Yoruba prayer-song. The percussion instruments are introduced and some volunteers get a chance to dance and drum for the finale, which is a rocking Batá Rumba dance party!
Best for: ELC • PreK-12 • Students with Disabilities • After-School/Community
Also available as a Workshop or Residency! (Residency can be in-person or offered via video.)
Featuring: Leana Song
Shawn Hennessey (Ensemble Lead) is a Multi-Instrumentalist and World Percussionist, who has performed in Ghana, Istanbul, Haiti, Tahiti, and all over the United States. In Philadelphia, Shawn founded and is the director of Leana Song, an Afro-Cuban and Ghanaian drum and song ensemble performing original and traditional compositions. Shawn has received grants from the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts, and The American Composers Forum to continue to study and teach world music. He is a graduate of Berklee College of Music and Emerson College and has more than 15 years’ experience working with diverse students of all ages. Shawn teaches world percussion at Germantown Friends School, and has been adjunct faculty at Temple University, Curtis School of Music, and The University of Pennsylvania.
Joined Musicopia: 2016