Out of Africa

African dance master offers dance, drumming classes


If you go

What: Dance and drum classes with African dance master Abdoulaye Camara

When: 5 p.m. drum class, 6:15 p.m. dance class Tuesday and Thursday

Where: Depot Art Center, 1001 13th St.

Cost: $15 per adult class, $24 for two classes

— Candice Lombardo is part of a strong group of local African dancers.

African dancing is just infectious enough to want to share it with the community, she said. "We bring in master (teachers) so people can get a taste for how fun it is."

African dance master Abdoulaye Camara is coming to Steamboat on Tuesday and Thursday to teach drumming and dance classes for all levels - from beginners to advanced dancers.

"He has an incredible ability to teach everyone and by the end, everybody can do what he taught," Lombardo said. "He breaks it down and also knows how to teach people who don't know how to dance."

Camara tours the western United States twice a year to instruct students on dance techniques that he started learning from his mother, grandmother, brothers and cousins in Guinea.

Taking master classes is special for Lombardo because of the authenticity of the movements.

"For me, it's about being able to take the traditional style of dance from someone who grew up in that country," she said. "You get to work on a lot of the subtleties and little things that a teacher from the country can give."

The drumming class is taught before the dance class so the drummers can play what they learned during the dance class.

"They come to it with incredible energy," Lombardo said. "Camara takes the class to a new level with the interaction between the drummers and the dancers."

These classes are ideal for someone who doesn't have enough time to take a semester-long course through Colorado Mountain College, she said.

"A lot of people who can't find time, take the master class from an African dancer and may love it so much," Lombardo said. "They may want to take the semester CMC class."


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