DANCE & SING... with
master drummer Kwasi Dunyo from Ghana, West Africa. Discover
the excitement and joy of traditional Ghanaian styles of music
and dance. Let Kwasi Dunyo introduce you to a culture whose
people share freely in their joy of the music.
Frederick Kwasi Dunyo was born at the Ewe village of Dagbamete,
in the Volta Region of Ghana. He has been playing the drums
from the time he could barely reach the top of them. Since
then, he has directed, coached, taught, drummed, and danced
extensively in a variety of contexts.
was the lead drummer for Sankofa Dance Theatre from 1977
to 1981 where, under the tutelage of Godwin Agbeli, he learned
much of his repertoire of Ghanaian music. In 1992, Kwasi
Dunyo was the recipient of a Visiting Foreign Artist grant
from the Canadian government which provided the basis for
his first trip to North America. Kwasi's open and generous
teaching style, and his love of the music has earned him
is the member of the faculties of York University, University
of Toronto, Royal Conservatory of Music and the Toronto
District School Board. He has also performed and given workshops
at many Canadian and American universities including the
University of Alberta, University of Saskatchewan, Guelph
University, University of Waterloo, University of Western
Ontario, McMaster University, Brock University, Memorial
University, University of Virginia, Tennessee Technological
University, and William and Mary University.
has taught in public schools in Ontario and Virginia, he
took part in a Sound Symposium in St. John's Newfoundland
in July 1992, and performed at Toronto's First Night in
1996 and 1997. Kwasi is now a member of the Society of Ethnomusicology
of North America.
Kwasi's current curriculum vitae.
they are saying...
I just wanted to thank you so much for giving us all this amazing opportunity...
Kwasi is an excellent teacher! He instills confidence and believes in each and every student.
I cannot thank you enough for the experience that I had this summer in Ghana.
you so very much for your classes for the past years.
are a very multicultural school and you were able to reach
everyone... all their differences seemed to have disappeared
and everybody chimed in at the same level. You have definitely
made a difference. (more)
haven't seen my girls enjoy something as much as they have you.
They come home practicing the songs and dances that you have
taught them. (more)
made us feel ALIVE and special. Thank you. (more)
entire school was keen for their turn with you, to learn more.
second grade students made thank-you notes for you... the sentiments
come straight from their hearts. You made a difference.
and faculty response has been very positive. (more)
have influenced the lives of many of us... (more)
How to Drum,
Dance and Sing...
has conducted African drumming and dance workshops for children
and adults all over North America. Click here to find out more.
SOUND OF THE DRUM...
ultimate drumming experience! Learn, hear, feel and experience the
sound of the drum at the places were drums were born... in Africa!
Click here to find out more.
CD and BOOK...
Ghana, music brings people in the community together. It is part
of all life, and within the music community each person is considered
equal. The various rhythms in the music make a statement, interacting
and responding to each other. Kwasi's personal belief is that music
is a spirit a most wonderful precious and happy spirit
given to everyone by the Creator before they were born. Each person
has music within them and it needs only to be developed. With Songs
of Ghana and Drums of Ghana Kwasi makes it possible to
realize the spirit within through listening to, singing and playing
the music of Ghana.
1: Bobobo Songs
(book). Bobobo means to bend over, lean over or get
down and refers to the body movements of the dancing. These
songs are from a large recreational piece called Bobobo.
Since they are part of the aural tradition of Ghana, there
can be no perfect transcription. There are many interpretations
of the songs depending on the region where they are sung
and who is performing them. The written format presented
represents Kwasi's personal interpretation of eight songs,
complete with phonetics, translation and music of each.
Coilbound. 17 pp.
1: Bobobo Songs
(CD). Companion CD to the book Songs of Ghana:
Bobobo Songs. Each of the songs is performed with traditional
gankogui and axatse instruments and
with the large drums of Ghana. Kwasi Dunyo performs eight
Bobobo songs accompanied by vocals. The drum tracks
of the same eight songs are repeated alone. The songs on
this CD are: Mie Le Ago Dom Na Mi, Mie Va Do Lo,
Gbe Si Gbe Ma Ku La, Bobo Mia Do Dali, Lolo
Nye Hafi Na Dzo La, Agama Gble Menye, Devi
Sue De Me Nye, and Novi Lolo. Click on the link
to play a sample track (Novi Lolo).
Watch videos of concerts and workshops from Kwasi's video archive.
the kids in Kwasi's village in Ghana go to school. Click here
to find out how to sponsor or child or help build a school.
358 Danforth Ave., Suite 160,
M4K 1N8, Canada
P.O. Box 191
Akatsi, Volta Region
Ghana, West Africa