Siren Song: A Battle between $$ and Culture

Siren Queen and Her Court

What's more valuable: money or culture? Carnival Arts pondered that question with our performance "Siren Song" on November 27, 2016. The Scavenger Queen led her army of skeletons and carrion birds, with their shopping carts overflowing with the discarded treasures of a throwaway consumer society, into a battle against the cultural wealth of Haitian Kongo dancers and drummers and the fierce ancestral power of Brazilian guerreiros. The battle was close, until the Siren Queen and her court descended from the sky and decided the winner. Singing a Cameroonian pop hit in her native Duala, the Siren Queen commanded the youth: "Oh, child, cherish your light. Know your worth!"

Kongo and Ibo Dances

Carnival Arts Kongo and Ibo from Celeste Fraser Delgado on Vimeo. On November 22, young artists from Miami Bridge Central joined Barry University students and master drummer Catelus "Ton Ton" Laguerre, choreographer Weislande "Yanui" Cesar, visual artists Damian Rojo and Veronicka Koebach, and program director and singer, Celeste Fraser Delgado. The Carnival Artists sing, dance, [...]

Carnival Arts Jaguar Band Does Conga

After spending the fall semester learning the dance and drum conga rhythms, the Thomas Jefferson Jaguars came up with an English-language version of the Cuban conga classic, "Yayabo": You were always saying that the Jaguars would never play again/but the Jaguars are in the street/Looking good and sounding sweet/and our rhythm can't be beat/Hey, hey, [...]

Playing Royal

Between Christmas Day and New year's Eve, we had a mini-Carnival Arts session on Playing Royal. West African traditions of masquerade often include a celebration of kings and queens. We spent an hour each day exploring and writing about the qualities that make each one of us royal, sang a Haitian carnival song for the [...]