2/12/22 O&A NYC SHALL WE DANCE FRIDAY: Ghetto Kids – Dance Talker 2022

The Ghetto Kids (or Triplets Ghetto Kids) is a dance group founded in 2014 by Daouda Kavuma and composed of children from the Katwe slum in Kampala (Uganda). Continue reading

2/2/22 O&A NYC WALESTYLEZ DANCE PARTY: Masaka Kids Africana Dancing To Jerusalema By Master KG Feat Nomcebo & Burna Boy

The Masaka Kids Africana is composed of African children, from the age of 2 and up. Many have lost one or both parents through the devastation of war, famine and disease. They represent all the children of a continent and they demonstrate the potential of African children to become strong leaders for a better future in their land.

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11/22/21 O&A NYC GOING BACK TO AFRICA WITH WaleStylez: South African Folk Dances- Zulu music, Domba, Volo, Ingoma boys, Ingoma girls, Indlamu & Mzansi

Various interpretations of folk dances from South Africa. Performed by the Ama-Zebra Folk Dance Ensemble, which is based in Kwa Mashu, South Africa. Continue reading

5/1/21 O&A NYC GOING BACK TO AFRICA WITH WaleStylez: A – Z African Dance Moves

“It was really hard choosing just one for each letter because there are SO many amazing moves from all over the continent ! Here are some of our favorite African Dance moves ! Continue reading

2/13/21 O&A NYC GOING BACK TO AFRICA WITH WaleStylez: Magical Africa Rain Dance

“This was in light of the during the Western Cape drought and I performed the Rain Dance in the middle of the Theewaterskloof Dam, of which is the main reservoir that had dried up.About a week or two after dancing at the reservoir, it started raining in the Western Cape.”Kitty Phetla
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1/11/21 O&A NYC ITS SATURDAY- ANYTHING GOES: Carib Gold (1956)- Ethel Waters, Cicely Tyson and Geoffrey Holder

Carib Gold (1956) is most notable for its largely African-American cast headlined by Ethel Waters, featuring the first known film roles for both Geoffrey Holder and 2019 Oscar Winner Cicely Tyson. The film is a maritime-themed B-movie, written and filmed almost entirely in Key West, Florida, with locally-cast musicians and extras. Continue reading

9/9/20 O&A NYC GOING BACK TO AFRICA WITH WaleStylez: Masaka Kids Africana Dancing African Dance

The Masaka Kids Africana is composed of Uganda-based children’s group, from the age of 2 and up. Many have lost one or both parents through the devastation of war, famine and disease. They represent all the children of a continent and they demonstrate the potential of African children to become strong leaders for a better future in their land.
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9/1/20 O&A NYC GOING BACK TO AFRICA WITH WaleStylez: Burna Boy – Wonderful

Wonderful is a song by Nigerian singer Burna Boy. It was released on June 26, 2020, as the lead single from his fifth studio album Twice as Tall (2020). Continue reading

8/28/20 O&A NYC SHALL WE DANCE FRIDAY: Creative Outlet Offers Free Outdoor Classes

By Walter Rutledge

The bright late morning sun was still drying the dew off the grass, but Fort Green Park was already bustling with energy. As I climbed the white marble stairs the sound of music greeted me halfway up. Patiently waiting at the base of the Prison Ship Martyrs’ Monument was Jamel Gaines, a tall man sporting a retro curly “fro”.

Soon the large plaza in front of the monument begin to fill with dancers of all ages, shapes and sizes. Gaines, the founder of Jamel Gaines Creative Outlet Dance Theatre of Brooklyn, has spent the more than 25 years building and cultivating the performing arts in Brooklyn. Long before Starbucks, trendy bars and little ugly dogs found Brooklyn’s urban landscape; Gaines had established an artistic foothold in the Fort Green section at 138 S Oxford Street.

If you have ever visited the Creative Outlet school, it has a feeling of a community/village. Parents monitor classes and assist with moving younger students between classrooms, there is a lunch concession that offers affordable hot meals and healthy snacks to the participants and family members. The focused classes resembled the most disciplined arts academy; the biggest difference of was the amount of melanin.

The pandemic put an end to the communal learning approach, and the use of traditional performing venues. Creative Outlet was forced to close its studios, but not suspend activities. Staying true to form Gaines began teaching free classes outdoors at Fort Green Park three days a week.

 
Creative Outlet Free Dance Class

On Thursday and Friday at 6pm and on Saturday at 11am Creative Outlet offers free classes dubbed as, “Culturally Healing and Movement Classes”. There are classes for all ages including a fun jazz-based movement class for children on Saturday morning. One of the most reassuring elements about these classes is that Gaines has brought Creative Outlet’s feeling of community with him. The first outdoor class had only six attendees; now there are over forty artists of all ages.

In addition to dance classes the Creative Outlet Queens, an interdisciplinary and multi-generational performing ensemble that also rehearses at Fort Green Park. The “Queens” will perform at Peace One Love a Black Lives Matter celebration on Saturday August 29th from 2-5pm at the Black Lives Matter Mural at Restoration Plaza (Fulton Street between New York Ave. and Brooklyn Ave). Although this is an outdoor event please practice social distancing whenever possible and please wear a mask.