On Tuesday, February 20, you are invited to witness one of the most exciting dance forms created in the 21st century. It is called stepping!
Stepping is a percussive dance genre cultivated by African-American fraternities and sororities and celebrated by thousands upon thousands. Step Afrika! Has performed on stages from Maine to Madagascar, London to Ho Chi Min City, and Amsterdam to Atlanta. Its members also hold award-winning arts education programs for more than 50,000 people annually. Step Afrika! is also unique in that it encourages community engagement, meaning that there is audience participation within their performances. In addition, the performances are more than just dance shows as they integrate songs, storytelling, humor, and audience participation. The blend of technique, agility, and pure energy makes each performance stand out. The Washington Post commented that the performances are “Always visually and musically exciting”. Step Afrika! also promotes utilizing stepping as an educational tool for young people, focusing on teamwork, academic achievement, and cross-cultural understanding.
— Gannon CSC (@GannonCSC) February 15, 2018
Step Afrika! has won a variety of awards including mayor arts awards, metro DC dance awards, and a 20th anniversary special recognition. Furthermore, they have performed at the White House for former President Barack Obama and the First Lady for their Presidential Black History Month Reception. They are also featured at the Smithsonian’s new National Museum of African-American History and Culture with the world’s first stepping interactive.
Step Afrika! is coming to Gannon University as part of its 23rd annual Black History Month Tour. It will bring the American folkloric tradition of stepping and associated African an African-American percussive dance at its highest level to students and art patrons, as they do to those across the United States.
Step Afrika’s mission since 1994 has been to preserve, expand, and spread the history of this highly energetic dance, and will do so in the Hammermill Center on Tuesday, February 20th at 8pm!
This event is free and open to the public.