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Olivia Hairston
African American Arts Institute

George Vlahakis
University Communications

Last modified: Tuesday, February 16, 2010

African American Dance Company to present its 13th annual workshop Feb. 26-27

Feb. 16, 2010

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. -- Indiana University's African American Arts Institute Dance Company will presents its 13th Annual Dance Workshop next Friday and Saturday (Feb. 26-27) at the Neal-Marshall Black Culture Center, 275 N. Jordan Ave.

Silfredo La O Vigo

The mission of the dance workshop is to expose participants to dance from the perspective of the African American and African Diaspora through master dance classes, panel discussion and enlightening dialogue.

This years' workshop will feature five distinguished guest artists:

  • Rogeilo Kindelan-Nordet, of Guantanamo Cuba, an accomplished dancer, vocalist and percussionist in the styles of Merengue Haitiano, Rumba, Gaga, Palo, Vodu, Tumba Francesa, Tajon and Chancleta;
  • Silfredo La O Vigo, San Diego, a professional dancer in the Afro-Cuban and Haitian tradition, modern contemporary dance and popular Latin dance;
  • Evelyn Yaa Bekyore, Ghana, West Africa, a professional dancer with Saakumu Dance Company;
  • Elana Anderson, Chicago, dancer, teacher and choreographer who has worked extensively in television, film and stage;
  • Reynaldo Gonzalez, Boston, an experienced professor of folkloric voice, dance and percussion.

The workshop will kick off at 1:30 p.m. on Feb. 26 with a Cuban modern dance class taught by Kindelan-Nordet and La O Vigo, followed by a class on the Ghanaian style of West African Dance by Bekyore at 3 p.m.

That evening there will be a panel discussion with the artists, "The Black Dance Experience: Dance and Engagement in the African Diaspora -- Practitioners and Scholars Speak," at 7 p.m. This discussion will help celebrate 40 years of the IU Department of African American and African Diaspora Studies, and is free and open to the public.

The first workshop on Feb. 27 will begin at 9:30 a.m. with classes for beginners and advanced students in the dance styles of Afro Cuban, Cuban Modern, West African, Horton (Modern) and Salsa.

There will be a dance showcase in the Grand Hall of the Neal-Marshall Black Culture Center that evening, starting at 7 p.m. This also is free and open to the public.

There are fees for the dance workshops. Full registration costs $90 (includes two Friday classes and three Saturday classes) and $55 for three Saturday sessions. Single classes cost $20. Lunch is $10. To obtain a registration form, visit

For more information and a detailed listing of class times contact IU Professor Iris Rosa at 812-855-6853 or, or Olivia Hairston of the African American Arts Institute at 812-855-5427 or

Below is additional biographical information about the artists:

Rogeilo Kindelan-Nordet

Kindelan Nordet's family of folkloric musicians and dancers of Haitian descent nurtured his talents and encouraged him to pursue a career as percussionist. After earning a masters-level degree from the Centro Nacional de Superacion de la Ensenanza Artistica (CNSEA) in Havana, he was director of the Folkloric Studies Department at CNSEA from 1982 to1985 and professor of folkloric percussion there, at Pablo Milanes Foundation and Las Escuela Nacional De Artes. He has taught at Cuban Salsa workshops in San Francisco, the California Academy of Arts and Sciences, Alhambra Academy, Santa Clara University, Sacramento City College, Alice Arts Center in Oakland, Mission Cultural Club and Humboldt State University. He also has been lead percussionist for numerous groups including, Projecto Folklorico, Banrara, Ballet de Belgium and Conjunto Folklorico Cutumba de Santiago, Cuba.

Silfredo La O Vigo

La O Vigo is a graduate of the National School of Art in Havana, Cuba, where he obtained a Bachelor of Arts in modern dance and Afro Cuban dance. He toured professionally with Cutumba: Ballet Folklorico Afro Cubano for five years and with the modern dance company ODC in San Francisco from 2001-2003. He now teaches at Palomar College as a dance professor. He also is the musical director of the Palomar College Drum and Dance Ensemble. He is a visual artist as well and has shown his work at the Palace of Fine Arts in San Francisco and ODC Gallery in San Francisco. He

Elana D. Anderson

Anderson is a native of Washington, D.C., and she began training professionally in dance at the age of 14 at the Duke Ellington School of the Arts there. She was the senior founding member and teacher at Deeply Rooted Dance Theatre in Chicago, Ill, and is an expert in the Horton modern dance technique. Anderson has worked with renowned teachers and choreographers, and has traveled the world over to teach and perform. She has worked extensively in television, film and stage. Her performance credits include work with the Philadelphia Dance Company, the DC Contemporary Dance Theatre, the Washington Opera, Jubilation! Dance Company, New World Dance Company, Joseph Holmes Chicago Dance Theater and the Lyric Opera of Chicago.

Reynaldo Gonzalez

Gonzalez, a native of Matanzas, Cuba, is a graduate of the Escuela para Instructores del Arte in Cuba and was a principal with the prestigious Grupo AfroCuba de Matanzas, with whom he performed with for 14 years. Since his arrival in the United States, Gonzalez has continued to perform and teach master classes in Afro-Cuban dance, song and percussion across the country. He teaches dance in the Boston area and also is an "Akpon," or singer of sacred songs.

Evelyn Yaa Bekyore

An internationally known dancer and teacher, Bekyore toured with the Saakumu Dance Troupe for more than 10 years, including at many national music and dance festivals in Ghana. She has worked with several international contemporary dance choreographers, such as Shani Henderson, at the Dagara Music Center. She studied with the renowned musician Bernard Woma, a teacher at the Dagara Music Center, and has collaborated with many choreographers in Ghana, Burkina Faso and the United States. Her recent choreography Zanu, is a contemporary dance work with the Saakumu Dance Troupe. She has recorded with Woma and many local artists in Ghana, and is a lead dancer of video and DVD releases by the Saakumu Dance Troupe.