Sosolya Undungu Dance Academy Teaches –African Drumming – Dancing
Traditional Dance-Drumming Lessons and Cultural Performances-Uganda
This last week we at Kabiza Wilderness were proud to host another group from Appalachian State University from North Carolina in the USA, one of the highlights of this year’s trip was a day with a team from Sosolya Undungu Dance Academy that taught them Dance-Drumming Lessons and Cultural Performances-Uganda.
Undungu is a Swahili word meaning family hood – Sosolya is an African bird. It’s a peaceful and beautiful bird found in Uganda that makes one smile when you see it and the Sosolya Undungu Dance Academy Troupe causes the audience to smile when they perform. So much so that they won the NGGAALI Music Competition 2011 and it gained them a spot at the Muhtadi International Drumming Festival in Toronto – June 2012. They also toured both in Germany, Austria and China.
The most amazing thing about the Sosolya Undungu Dance Academy is that those who attend are children of need, from slums, others are orphans and the Academy instills some hope and pride within these children as young as four by teaching them musical and dance skills and supporting them in various ways by giving them a home and or schooling – simply a good thing – children come from all cultural groups and backgrounds in Uganda and money earned by performances goes to support the children through the Kiseminti Needy Children Organization which is the parent organization to Sosolya Undungu Dance Academy.
Children learn how to play the various instruments used in Uganda by various cultural groups which are included in the orchestra that provides the music for the dancers. Instruments include Drums of various types and sizes – ranging from the mighty mujjaguzzo (royal celebrations) through embuutu, empunyi, engalabi and namunjoloba. Melodic percussion instruments – including balafons (amadinda, akadinda, endaala) and thumb piano (akogo).String instruments, including one stringed tube fiddle (endingidi) and adungu played in ensembles of at least four different sizes – soprano, alto, tenor and bass. Their sounds are scintillating like the West African kora.
Watching the Sosolya Undugu Dance Academy perform is like taking a vibrant trip across the African continent – the performances make Africa come alive with African Dance and Music from around Uganda and the Great Lakes Region. The dancers and musician give their all and that is evident as you watch them perform since they are not merely going through motions but they give their all and Africa comes alive in front of your eyes. You can see them perform every Sunday evening at Hotel International in Muyenga – a suburb of Kampala while you are having dinner at the same time – all one can say – that they are simply amazing and fantastic.
We can include a visit to the Sosolya Undugu Dance Academy during your stay in Kampala and or arrange a performance for your group or function by them and include even dance and drumming lesson as we did for the Appalachian State University Team who had two sessions in the same day and loved it. A Cultural performance by the Sosolya Undugu Dance Academy is an event not to be missed while in Kampala – don’t forget to buy a drum in the village of Mpambire ….
Video of Dance-Drumming Lessons and Cultural Performances-Uganda