The African-Caribbean Concert dances its way back

For more than 10 years the Center for Caribbean Culture has been holding African-Caribbean Concerts on Florida A&M University’s campus. And this year, the 23rd annual African-Caribbean Concert will be held Friday, February 17 at 7:30 p.m.

The Concert will feature the Haitian Cultural Club, the FAMU Rhythm Rushers Bahamian Junkanoo Group and the Caribbean Student Association. The 2006 guest at this event is Dromatala, a West-African Community Dance theatre.

“With FAMU being a Historically Black College and University it’s important that we showcase events like this that highlight our culture,” said Osubi Craig, assistant director of the Center for Caribbean Culture.

The center for Caribbean culture is located in room 108 of the Foster Tanner building and the African-Caribbean Concert is only one part of the program.

“FAMU has a large Caribbean population, this is a place where they can get support, we sponsor two-year scholarships for Bahamians who participate in the Bahamian Junkanoo Group.

Past Caribbean concerts have included guests from Jamaica, Trinidad and Tobago, and Brazil. The African-Caribbean concert includes elements of dance, singers, drumming, modeling of African attire and poetry.

“The best way to describe the concert is to liken it to a festival, like Carnival, but not as constructed,” said Leonard Sands, a construction engineering student from Nassau, Bahamas. “We use intricate costumes and masqueraders perform to indigenous music created uniquely by this group.”

Due to recent A&S budget cuts the Center has had difficulties promoting this event.

“No money has been released, so we haven’t been able to make information as available,” Craig said. “We are hoping that in the next few days money will be released so we can promote the event and get students out to the concert.”

“I’ve been here for three years and I’ve never heard of it,” said Thayne Dalrymple , a junior biology pre-medicine student from Miami. “If I had heard about it before I would have definitely gone because it is a part of my background.”

Some teachers will offer students credit for attending the African-Caribbean concert.

“Extra credit may be offered in history, art and humanities,” Craig said.

The concert will be free for FAMU students with ID. Tickets are available in the ticket booth on the set. Tickets are $5 for general admission and $3 for children 12 and under.

“We usually get results saying I would have never come, but I’ve had a lot of fun and I’m definitely coming back, so that’s what it’s about, opening minds and upholding our culture, it helps to create a truly well-rounded experience in college,” Craig said.

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