Before the first day of school starts at the State University of New York at Brockport, Convocation is held at the Serc for the incoming freshman. This building is only a few years old and provides a perfect space for large gatherings.
For a very long time, members of Sankofa (an African Drumming and Dance Ensemble) have performed at this event. I am not a member of Sankofa, but have been drumming with Khalid Saleem for quite awhile, and this is the third time I have participated. A few members of our Saturday drumming group are official members and the rest of us are able to join them.
Before going there, the drummers and dancers met at the Strasser Studio around noon to get organized. There was a brief rehearsal for about an hour as it's the first time this group had worked together this semester. The kids were up and so talented.
It was good to see Khalid, who spent the summer working in North Carolina.
After we practiced our entrance the stage was set up and we had a run through with the dancers.
While we were waiting in the dressing room, the dancers practiced once again.
Khalid (on the right) is the musical director for Sankofa, and Wayne has been part of the group for years (he also plays with us on Saturdays).
This is the group of people I drum with. An offshoot group was started called Umoja and we drum for various activities (cancer walks/runs, half-marathons, farm markets, summer serenades, special events, school and hospital visits etc.). Later in September we will be drumming for a full marathon in Rochester and will probably finish the season with another cancer walk/run in October that attracts thousands of participants. I have posted pictures in the past. Such fun. Many stop and dance in front of us.
We really rocked the house.
You had to be there.....
So much for today.