Undergraduate Dept/Course Number: MuCT W395, ARTH W495
Graduate Dept/Course Number: MuCT W586, ARTH W586
Credit Hours: 4
Pre-requisites: Consent of Instructor
The workshop will take place in four locations: Tamale in the Northern Region; Kumasi, the capital city of the Asante; Cape Coast, an ancient slave port; and Accra, the nation's capital.
Tamale is a cultural center for the Dagbamba people of the Northern Region. There we tour area villages, attend festivals and ceremonies, and undertake a week-long study of traditional Dagbamba music, dance, and art with Habib Idrissu.
From Tamale we will travel by bus five hours south to the Asante capital of Kumasi. A bustling city of over 1 million inhabitants, traditional arts thrive along-side the latest technological advances. There we tour the Asantehene's palace, as well as the nearby art centers of Bonwire (Kente cloth), Ntonso (Adinkra cloth), Ahwiaa (wood carving), and Kurofukorum (brass). In addition, we will bring in traditional artists to perform for us, while taking on a brief applied study of regional music, dance, and arts (ie: ceramics, textiles, sculpture, metal-working, and mixed media).
The trip to Cape Coast will include a visit to the slave forts of Elmina and Cape Coast, as well as to Kokum, for a canopy walk in the rain forest.
While in the region of Accra, we study with xylophonist Bernard Woma and his staff at the Dagara Music and Arts Center for six hours of formal study per day. In addition to music, Mr. Woma will bring in specialists to teach traditional arts, including ceramics, textiles, sculpture, masking, and dancing traditions.
Trips to museums and other areas of interest in and around Accra (e.g. the city of Tema to visit a fantasy coffin-making studio and a contemporary art gallery) will be part of this final week.
Throughout the trip we will attend various social events as they occur---ceremonies, funerals, celebrations---and will periodically attend music and dance performances.