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LUNCH WITH BOOKS: WLU African Drum and Dance Ensemble

October 12, 2021
12:00pm - 1:00pm

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Presented by the West Liberty University African Drum & Dance Ensemble, directed by Dr. Mitch Greco. Play and learn about West African music and dance! We will be exploring the instruments of the Ga ethnic group of southern Ghana, a unique music-culture that fuses idiophone timeline instruments (gankogui double-bell and axatse rattle) with drums played with your hands (jembe and kpanlogo). Experience the participatory, improvisatory, and energetic nature of the music-culture through singing, clapping, drumming, and dancing. Wear comfortable clothing that you can move around in!

In addition to being in-person in the Library auditorium, this program will be available to watch live on Facebook Live, on YouTube, and on the OCPL website's LWB Livestream page Log into your Facebook or YouTube account during the program to leave questions for our presenters in the comments box. They will answer them during the live broadcast. 

Tuesday: October 12 at noon
LWB LIVESTREAM: WLU African Drum and Dance Ensemble lead by Professor of Music Mitch Greco

PRESENTER BIO: The West Liberty University Percussion & World Music Department offers a variety of performance opportunities for students and the surrounding communities. A primary focus of the program is performing in a variety of ensembles, building large and chamber ensemble skills while developing musicianship and cultural awareness.

Percussion Ensemble is a student-centered ensemble that provides a solid foundation in percussion technique and concepts within traditional western musical contexts. WLU's African Drum and Dance Ensemble is lead by Professor of Music Mitch Greco.

Dr. Mitch Greco is Assistant Professor of Music and the Director of Percussion and World Music. He directs the Percussion Ensemble and Marching Hilltoppers Drumline, as well as the world music ensembles, which includes the Advanced and Beginner Steel Bands, the African Drum & Dance Ensemble, and occasional “special topic” ensembles. He also teaches applied percussion lessons, as well as courses on percussion fundamentals (for music education majors), world music and ethnomusicology, music technology, and professional development for musicians.

Dr. Greco is the creator and director of the West Liberty Creative Musical Arts Competition (CMAC), an annual competition for high school students from West Virginia, Pennsylvania and Ohio. He is also the co-chair of the West Liberty University Institutional Review Board (IRB), which reviews all faculty, staff and student research projects that utilize human subjects. Dr. Greco is currently the President of the Percussive Arts Society West Virginia Chapter and the West Virginia State Representative for the National Society of Steel Band Educators. He is an active member of the Society for Ethnomusicology.

Follow the West Liberty University Percussion and World Music on Facebook.

FEATURED DVD: Beginning Djembe: Essential Tones, Rhythms, and Grooves (by Joe Galeota, Michael Markus, Berklee Press, 2012)

DVD coverThis DVD is a hands-on workshop on playing djembe that explains how to produce a good sound, use healthy playing technique, and learn the essential concepts and rhythms of West African djembe drumming. Learn correct, effective djembe playing technique and posture; the three fundamental sounds on the djembe: bass, slap, and tone; exercises and play-along tracks to help develop good tone and facility, and memorize essential rhythms and their variations; traditional djembe rhythms, and how they fit into a traditional African djembe ensemble; techniques for soloing; the history and traditional context of the djembe; and how to tune, maintain, and care for a djembe. Extensive play-along tracks help you practice every technique in the context of a traditional African djembe ensemble. 

“Excellent for the beginner to learn how to play the djembe. Joe and Michael are clear and easy to follow. The playing is correct and clean. A wonderful DVD!”
—M’bemba Bangoura, Master Drummer (Guinea, West Africa)

Lunch With Books Livestream starts at noon on Facebook and YouTube.

Subscribe to the Lunch With Books Youtube channel or like us on the Lunch With Books Facebook page or to receive notifications of our upcoming LWB broadcasts. To receive emails about our upcoming programs, visit our News page, click the "Subscribe" button to sign-up for our news blasts or download our free OCPL Connect app from your smartphone's app store. 

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"Lunch With Books" is the library’s flagship program for adult patrons. These lunchtime programs feature authors, poets, musicians, historians, and more every Tuesday at noon. Bring lunch (to your computer), feed your brain!

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