Read With Me

Through our Read With Me program, teaching artists show parents fun ways to create learning experiences for their children at home. These early childhood family workshops give parents and children memorable opportunities to sing, dance and make art together. Children learn literacy skills and receive a free book to take home. Please join us for an upcoming Read With Me workshop every second Saturday of the month!


Read With Me Workshops Calendar

The workshops below are offered FREE of charge.


SATURDAY, October 12th & 26th, 2019


From 11 AM - 12 PM

LOCATION:

PROJECT CREATE STUDIO
2028 MLK JR. AVE SE, second floor,
WASHINGTON, DC 20020

Under the Harvest Moon: Two Free Music and Movement Workshops for Families

With Teaching Artists: Magpie & Imani Gonzalez

Falling leaves, cool nights, nighttime animals, and harvest feasts mark the change of the season. Come sing and dance songs as vibrant as the colors of the leaves with your friends at Inner City- Inner Child. This month, we have a special double-header, with workshops on Saturday October 12th AND October 26th!

On October 12th, join the teaching artist team Magpie as they serenade your ears and help our tiniest of creatures throw the biggest harvest party you’ve ever seen!

Then on October 26th, Join teaching artist Imani Gonzalez as she takes us down to the farm on a cloud of sound. We will dance the animals of the barnyard and learn a new way to sing our ABC’s with a brand new rap about a coconut tree.

So prepare your party hats and put on your dancing shoes because it is time to ring in the new season!

Everyone receives a FREE book at the end of each workshop!

Recommended for children ages 2-6, but everyone is welcome

 
Magpie.jpg

Terry Leonino and Greg Artzner, educators and musicians, are mainstays of the Inner City-Inner Child early education program. Terry holds three degrees in early childhood education, including two in special education for children with learning disabilities and emotional disturbances from Kent State University. In addition to being award-winning, renowned singer-songwriters, Terry and Greg are Master Artist Teachers for the Wolf Trap Institute for Early Learning and pioneers in the use of American Sign Language to promote literacy for low-income early learners.

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Imani Gonzalez performs and conducts vocal workshops concentrating on traditional world music nationally, from the cultures of Asia, West and South Africa, South America, and the Caribbean. She has conducted traditional World Music workshops for the National Geographic Society, the Smithsonian National Portrait Gallery, and offers exciting professional development workshops, residencies, classroom modeling, arts coaching for teachers, and school performances for communities at every level. She has performed traditional African music for the Smithsonian Institution, Smithsonian’s Folklife Festival, and the World Music Institute. Ms. Gonzalez has taught in the DC Public School system and in private schools as a traditional world music teacher. In past years, she has received grants from both the DC Commission on the Arts and Humanities and the Artist-In-Education Program for the Maryland State Arts Council. She has also served as Consultant for the PDAE Grant Committee of Jacksonville, Florida. She is a Kennedy Center and Washington Performing Arts (WPA) teaching artist and is on the roster with the Maryland State Arts Council and United Arts Council of North Carolina.


SATURDAY, September 14th, 2019
11 AM - 12 PM

LOCATION:PROJECT CREATE STUDIO
2028 MLK JR. AVE SE, second floor,
WASHINGTON, DC 20020

The Waters of our World: A Free Music and Movement Workshop for Families

With Teaching Artist: Becky Lallande

Where does water come from?  Why does it fall from the clouds?  How does it flow, swirl, and splash as it races across the ground?  This month, join Inner City-Inner Child teaching artist Becky Lallande for a morning of imaginary splashing and drip-dropping.  We will sing and move together like the clouds and rivers, while we dance through the science of the water cycle.  So be sure to open up your umbrella and put on your water wings, because this is going to be one wet and wild imaginary journey! 

 

Everyone receives a FREE book to take home at the end of the workshop.

 

Recommended for children ages 2-6, but everyone is welcome!

 
Becky.jpg

Becky Lallande is a company member of Word Dance Theater where she has received training in the Isadora Duncan technique with an emphasis on teaching dance and movement for youth. Becky holds a BA in Religion from the University of Mary Washington where she also studied dance and vocal performance, and has since received certification in dance choreography through Dance ICONS, an international choreographic institute based in Washington, D.C. and been a member of the D.C. hip hop team Capital Funk. Becky is the Youth Director of Word Dance Theater's youth programs and is a teaching artist with Wolf Trap’s Institute of Early Learning in the Arts, InnerCity-InnerChild, Sitar Arts Center, and Go Bananas Dancing, INC. Sharing creative movement through dance, imagination, and rhythmic exploration with young children, Becky especially loves the shared joy in creating together.


SATURDAY, August 10th, 2019
11 AM - 12 PM

LOCATION:PROJECT CREATE STUDIO
2028 MLK JR. AVE SE, second floor,
WASHINGTON, DC 20020

We’re Off to the Market: A Free Nigerian Wrap Making Workshop for Families

With Teaching Artist: Karen O. Brown

As summer comes to a close, with the sound of school bells right around the corner, come join your friends at Inner City-Inner Child as we take a family trip to the continent of Africa! Join teaching artist Karen O. Brown as we explore the markets of Nigeria with the delightful book “Baby Goes to Market”, by the famous Nigerian author Atinuke. We will learn about the fruits, vegetables, and household items sold in the market place, and we will even make our own head wraps and baby wraps. So get your passport ready and leave room in your bag, because we will have many souvenirs and memories to show all your new school friends!

Everyone receives a Free book to take home at the end of the workshop.

 

Recommended for children ages 2-6, but everyone is welcome!

 
Karen+Brown.jpg

Karen is a professional artist and experienced arts educator. She conducts workshops and residencies for organizations such as The Kennedy Center, Class Acts Arts, Washington Performing Arts, the Smithsonian museums, and numerous public libraries. Her international travels in Asia, Europe, and Central and South America inform and enrich her teaching residencies, workshops, and public art projects. Karen’s graduate work is in textiles, ceramics, sculpture, 3-D and surface design, bookmaking, and photography. She specializes in differentiated instruction to meet the needs of children with varied learning styles


SATURDAY, July 13tH, 2019
11 AM - 12 PM

LOCATION:PROJECT CREATE STUDIO
2028 MLK JR. AVE SE, second floor,
WASHINGTON, DC 20020

Alphabetisimo: A Free Interactive Shadow Puppet Workshop for Families

With Teaching Artist: Natasha Mirny

Summertime is all about playing in the sun, but playing with the shade is just as fun!  So join your friends at Inner City-Inner Child as we learn about the alphabet through Shadow Puppets.  This month, teaching artist Natasha Mirny will lead us in a fabulous shadow-puppet theater performance of Alphabetisimo.  Be amazed as the letters of the alphabet go on an exciting journey inside and outside their magical house of light.  We will learn ways to recall all our letter friends, and even make letter puppets of our own.  So come beat the heat with your 26 new best friends!

Everyone receives a Free book to take home at the end of the workshop.

 

Recommended for children ages 2-6, but everyone is welcome!

 
Natasha.jpg

Natasha Mirny is a stage director, choreographer, performer, and founder of the Happy Theater. She started her career as a stage director of one of the largest puppet theaters in Moscow, Russia and has been running her small professional theatrical company since 2011. Natasha is a dedicated teacher who works with students of all ages, and enjoys working with kids from 3 to 15 the most. Her background is in pantomime, puppetry, and physical theater. Natasha is a faculty member at several theaters in DC metro area – Synetic, Imagination Stage, TheatreLab, Wolf Trap


SATURDAY, June 8tH, 2019
11 AM - 12 PM

LOCATION:PROJECT CREATE STUDIO
2028 MLK JR. AVE SE
WASHINGTON, DC 20020

Music from the Stars: A Free Interactive Theater Workshop for Families

Teaching Artists: Meli Strova-Valencia & Karen Morales-Chacana

Look up in the Sky!  Is it a UFO?  Why yes, it’s a United Family Opportunity, led by your friends at Inner City-Inner Child!  This month we’re taking a journey through the stars led by theatrical teaching artists Melissa Strova and Karen Morales.  We’ll blast off to the planet Venus on a mission to share our love of music and we might even meet new lifeforms along the way.  So put on your space suit and strap in your seat belt because the countdown to fun and adventure is about to begin! 

 

Everyone receives a Free book to take home at the end of the workshop.

 

Recommended for children ages 2-6, but everyone is welcome!

 
Karen Morales-Chacana.jpg

Karen Morales-Chacana is a Chilean-born actress and teacher. She holds an acting and education degree. She recently acted at GALita,in Picasso where she also appeared in Entre el cielo y la tierra, Blancaflor –The Girl Wizard, Seneca, The Library Mouse, Volcanos, Storytelling from El Salvador, Platero and I and Believe It or Not!, Cri-cri And as a choreographer in The World Is A Handkerchief. She is a GALA Hispanic Theatre company member who appeared in Like Water for Chocolate, Chronic of the Death Foretold, The Knight from Olmedo, Cuba’s King of Song, Jornada Escondida and Blood Wedding, Blind date, Molotov Kisses. She is member of Synetic Theater Company and has appeared in Antony and Cleopatra, Dracula and Jekyll & Hyde and performed at Kennedy center with them. She also participated in The Mouse In Motion with Imagination Stage. She wrote, directed and performed, Dream of Azul. At the Fringe Festival she acted in El Sueño or The Delightful Nightmares of the Ladies and Rapists and Drug Dealers. In Teatro de la Luna she acted in As If It Were Tonight, Two-Scented Roses and I want them both, and she has led puppetry workshops for the company, Searching for Gabriela at The In Series, A Wonderful Meeting, Little Red Riding Hood and Pito y Pepa with D2 Puppet Theater. She produced for Spotlight Communications in Lovers and acted in Accept Me If You Love Me. She holds many other credits in Chile. She is co-founder and co-artistic producing director at Teatro La Bolsa, where she co-wrote, directed and acted in Celebremos. Her last film was Love in the Elevator. Karen is Spanish, dance and theater teacher works at Oyster Bilingual School, Janney School and Sitar Center with early childhood and at Shakespeare theatre company Education, SED Center and BRIYA Public Charter School where she also works as a trainer teacher.

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Melissa Strova-Valencia is a Colombian artist, actress, storyteller, dancer, musician and teacher. She holds a bachelor´s degree in Early Childhood Education from San Buenaventura University in Colombia, a master´s degree in Advanced Theatre Studies from La Rioja International University in Spain, and a diploma in Art in the Early Childhood from the Ministry of Culture and San Buenaventura University in Colombia. She began her career as an arts teacher at her family business, MUSITODO music academy where she studied music and went on to run the music classes for early childhood. She has worked as a preschool, music, dance and drama teacher for early childhood, and performed in theatre, music, storytelling and dance shows specifically tailored to early childhood children. Currently based in Washington DC, she is pursuing studies in neurobiology and works as a music teacher for early childhood at Levine Music School, Children´s House of Washington, as a drama teacher at Sitar Arts Center.


SATURDAY, May 11TH, 2019
11 AM - 12 PM

LOCATION:PROJECT CREATE STUDIO
2028 MLK JR. AVE SE
WASHINGTON, DC 20020

Spring Awakening: A Free Interactive Music & Movement Workshop for Families

Teaching Artist: Magpie

With a nice wide stretch and a great big yawn, 

Our good friend spring steps out on the lawn.  

Spring is so excited to join our friends, 

With Inner City-Inner Child, the fun never ends!  

Mark your calendars and tie your shoes, 

we have a full morning of fun things to do!


Welcome back friends for another morning of fun and learning.  This Saturday, master teaching artists, Terry Leonino and Greg Artzner, otherwise know as Magpie, use fun songs and lively dances to teach us about the season of spring. Early childhood math, science, literacy and arts all rolled up into one fun family workshop!

 

Everyone will receive a free copy of the classic “Bunny’s Noisy Book” to take home at the end of the workshop.

 

Recommended for children ages 2-6, but everyone is welcome!

 
Magpie.jpg

Terry Leonino and Greg Artzner, educators and musicians, are mainstays of the Inner City-Inner Child early education program. Terry holds three degrees in early childhood education, including two in special education for children with learning disabilities and emotional disturbances from Kent State University. In addition to being award-winning, renowned singer-songwriters, Terry and Greg are Master Artist Teachers for the Wolf Trap Institute for Early Learning and pioneers in the use of American Sign Language to promote literacy for low-income early learners.


SATURDAY, April 13TH, 2019
11 AM - 12 PM

LOCATION:PROJECT CREATE STUDIO
2028 MLK JR. AVE SE
WASHINGTON, DC 20020

Rhythmic Rhapsody : A Free Interactive Rhythm Workshop for Families

Teaching Artist: Marcia Daft

We’ve got rhythm, yes we do!  We’ve got rhythm, how about you?  For our April workshop, your friends at Inner City-Inner Child are putting on our dancing shoes as we sing and shake it with musician and educator Marcia Daft.  We’ll practice our rhythms and movement using pattern loops and songs.  We might even have an appearance by a few instruments to help us along!  So come join us as we dance the morning away!       

 

Everyone receives a free copy of “Clap, Drum, and Shake It!“ at the end of the workshop!

 

Recommended for families with children ages 2-6, but everyone is welcome! 

 
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Marcia is the Founder and Artistic Director of Moving Through Math and Moving Through Science. Her company produces and publishes children’s books, instructional materials, and videos that bring arts integrated learning to life in the classroom. Marcia is a national workshop presenter for the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington, D.C. and a Master Artist with the Wolf Trap Institute for Early Learning Through the Arts. Ms. Marcia has also developed museum exhibitions and educational programs for the Smithsonian Institution. She has written more than twenty children's educational booklets with CD’s for The Smithsonian Institution and the National Symphony Orchestra. Ms. Daft graduated Phi Beta Kappa in bio-medical engineering from Duke University. She was a Century Fellow at The University of Chicago, where she earned a Master’s Degree in music. She studied piano performance at the Mozarteum in Salzburg, Austria, and holds both a Certificate and License in Dalcroze Eurhythmics - a technique of integrating music and dance.

 

SATURDAY, March 9TH, 2019
11 AM - 12 PM

LOCATION:PROJECT CREATE STUDIO
2028 MLK JR. AVE SE
WASHINGTON, DC 20020

Weaving Warmth and Wonder: A FREE Interactive Weaving Workshop for Families

Teaching Artist: Karen Brown

As spring begins to peek out from winter’s icy ground, join your friends from Inner City-Inner Child as we learn a beautiful art form that is thousands of years old!   This family fun workshop, led by teaching artist Karen O. Brown, is based on the Native American story of “The Goat in the Rug”. We’ll learn about the care and cooperation involved in the weaving of a Navajo rug by making small looms and weaving with paper and yarn. So come join us for a morning of stories, crafts, and fun! 

 

All participants receive a free copy of “The Goat in the Rug”

 

Recommended for families with children ages 2-6, but everyone is welcome!

 
Karen+Brown.jpg

Karen is a professional artist and experienced arts educator. She conducts workshops and residencies for organizations such as The Kennedy Center, Class Acts Arts, Washington Performing Arts, the Smithsonian museums, and numerous public libraries. Her international travels in Asia, Europe, and Central and South America inform and enrich her teaching residencies, workshops, and public art projects. Karen’s graduate work is in textiles, ceramics, sculpture, 3-D and surface design, bookmaking, and photography. She specializes in differentiated instruction to meet the needs of children with varied learning styles


SATURDAY, February 9TH, 2019
11 AM - 12 PM

LOCATION:PROJECT CREATE STUDIO
2028 MLK JR. AVE SE
WASHINGTON, DC 20020

There’s sNOw day Like a Snowy Day: A Free Interactive Puppet Making Workshop for Families

Teaching Artist: Karen Brown

As old man winter begins to catch his yearly stride, come join your friends at Inner City-Inner Child as we celebrate the season with a very special book! “The Snowy Day” by Ezra Jack Keats, known as one of the first children’s books to feature an African-American child as a central character, was published in 1962 and received the distinguish Caldecott Award the following year. Now over 50 years later, it’s still a favorite with every child!

To celebrate this beautiful and important book, teaching artist Karen O. Brown will lead children and adults in a hands-on workshop, inspired by Peter’s day in the snow. We’ll create snow angel puppets using a wide variety of materials and techniques. Come and join in the winter fun!

 **The workshop will be held at the Project Create Location on 2028 MLK Ave, SE**

Receive a Free copy of “Snowy Day” to take home at the end of the workshop!

Recommended for families with children ages 2-6, but everyone is welcome!

 
Karen+Brown.jpg

Karen is a professional artist and experienced arts educator. She conducts workshops and residencies for organizations such as The Kennedy Center, Class Acts Arts, Washington Performing Arts, the Smithsonian museums, and numerous public libraries. Her international travels in Asia, Europe, and Central and South America inform and enrich her teaching residencies, workshops, and public art projects. Karen’s graduate work is in textiles, ceramics, sculpture, 3-D and surface design, bookmaking, and photography. She specializes in differentiated instruction to meet the needs of children with varied learning styles.


SATURDAY, JANUARY 12TH, 2018
11 AM - 12 PM

LOCATION:PROJECT CREATE STUDIO
2208 MLK JR. AVE SE
WASHINGTON, DC 20020

Hibernation Celebration:
A FREE Interactive Storytelling Workshop for Families with Young Children

Teaching Artist: Sylvia Zwi

As the winter settles in "Brown Bear cuddles in a heap, with eyes shut tight, sleeps through the day, sleeps through the night"

Friends come by for a morning of interactive storytelling, with Innercity-Innerchild and teaching artist Sylvia Zwi.  We’ll learn about the things our bear friends do during the winter, and even though we will be awake, bear snores on.....

But wait: Bear is waking up and surely does not want to be miss all the fun!  So you too dear friend, come into the cave, let's roar, let's jump, let's growl, and stomp!

 **The workshop will be held at the Project Create Location on 2208 MLK Ave, SE**

Everyone receives a FREE book to take home at the end of the workshop.

 

Recommended for families with children ages 2 - 6, but everyone is welcome!

 
Sylvia.Zwi.JPG

In addition to leading ICIC Family Literacy and Professional Development workshops, Sylvia is a Master Teaching Artist for the Wolf Trap Institute for Early Learning Through the Arts and Fairfax County Office for Children. She is a performing arts instructor, with an emphasis on early childhood music at the SITAR Center for the Arts, Oyster-Adams Bilingual School (DCPS), Levine School of Music and the Choral Arts Society of Washington. A graduate from the Universidade de Campinas (UNICAMP) in Sao Paulo, Brazil, Sylvia also has credits in early childhood education and psychology from Nassau Community College in New York.


SATURDAY, December 8TH, 2018
11 AM - 12 PM

LOCATION: PROJECT CREATE STUDIO
2028 MARTIN LUTHER KING, JR. AVENUE SE, SECOND FLOOR
WASHINGTON, DC 20020

 

My Heart Fills With Happiness When...I Create Art

Teaching Artist: Karen Brown

What fills your heart with happiness?

Holding the hand of someone you love? Reading a cozy bedtime story? The smell of fresh baked cookies? Creating a work of art?

With the holiday season upon us, now is the time to take a deep breath and reflect on what brings us joy and how we can bring joy to others. Celebrate the holidays with Inner City- Inner Child and visual artist Karen Brown by creating art based on the book My Heart Fills With Happiness. Families with young children will experiment with various materials to create gifts for loved ones

Everyone receives a FREE book to take home at the end of the workshop.

 

Recommended for families with children ages 2 - 6, but everyone is welcome!

 
Karen+Brown.jpg

Karen is a professional artist and experienced arts educator. She conducts workshops and residencies for organizations such as The Kennedy Center, Class Acts Arts, Washington Performing Arts, the Smithsonian museums, and numerous public libraries. Her international travels in Asia, Europe, and Central and South America inform and enrich her teaching residencies, workshops, and public art projects. Karen’s graduate work is in textiles, ceramics, sculpture, 3-D and surface design, bookmaking, and photography. She specializes in differentiated instruction to meet the needs of children with varied learning styles.


SATURDAY, November 10TH, 2018
11 AM - 12 PM

LOCATION: PROJECT CREATE STUDIO
2028 MARTIN LUTHER KING, JR. AVENUE SE, SECOND FLOOR
WASHINGTON, DC 20020

 

The Amazing Amazon: An Adventure in Music and Movement

Teaching Artist: Natasha Mirny

As the temperature begins to drop, warm-up with Innercity-Innerchild on a trip to South America down the Amazon! Using our imaginations, music, and movement we'll explore the rainforest and river, meet with Amazonian shaman, and create a Museum of Amazonia with amazing animals and plants we meet along the way. Also learn about the importance of forests and why people should protect and save them.  

 

Everyone receives a FREE book to take home at the end of the workshop.

 

Recommended for families with children ages 2 - 6, but everyone is welcome

 
Natasha.jpg

Natasha Mirny is a stage director, choreographer, performer, and founder of the Happy Theater. She started her career as a stage director of one of the largest puppet theaters in Moscow, Russia and has been running her small professional theatrical company since 2011. Natasha is a dedicated teacher who works with students of all ages, and enjoys working with kids from 3 to 15 the most. Her background is in pantomime, puppetry, and physical theater. Natasha is a faculty member at several theaters in DC metro area – Synetic, Imagination Stage, TheatreLab, Wolf Trap.


SATURDAY, October 13TH, 2018
11 AM - 12 PM

LOCATION: PROJECT CREATE STUDIO
2028 MARTIN LUTHER KING, JR. AVENUE SE, SECOND FLOOR
WASHINGTON, DC 20020

 

Teaching Artist: Sylvia Zwi

This interactive workshop will give parents the tools to use singing and dancing to develop children’s literacy skills, love of books and passion for reading.  Renowned teaching artist, musician, and performer, Sylvia Zwi, will introduce story-telling techniques that actively engage parents and children, creating a rich and vibrant learning environment for infants, toddlers, and preschool students. 

Each family will receive a FREE copy of “The Little Old Lady Who Wasn’t Afraid of Anything.”

Recommended for 2-5 year olds, but EVERYONE is welcome!

 
Sylvia.Zwi.JPG

In addition to leading ICIC Family Literacy and Professional Development workshops, Sylvia is a Master Teaching Artist for the Wolf Trap Institute for Early Learning Through the Arts and Fairfax County Office for Children. She is a performing arts instructor, with an emphasis on early childhood music at the SITAR Center for the Arts, Oyster-Adams Bilingual School (DCPS), Levine School of Music and the Choral Arts Society of Washington. A graduate from the Universidade de Campinas (UNICAMP) in Sao Paulo, Brazil, Sylvia also has credits in early childhood education and psychology from Nassau Community College in New York.


SATURDAY, September 8TH, 2018
11 AM - 12 PM

LOCATION: PROJECT CREATE STUDIO
2028 MARTIN LUTHER KING, JR. AVENUE SE, SECOND FLOOR
WASHINGTON, DC 20020

 

Alphabetisimo: A Back to School Puppet Workshop

 

Teaching Artists: Natasha Mirny 

 

As summer comes to a close and schools bells are preparing to chime, learn about the alphabet through shadow puppets with Inner City – Inner Child teaching artist, Natasha Mirny.  Be amazed as the letters of the alphabet go on an exciting journey inside and outside their magical house of light.   We’ll learn ways to recall all our letter friends, and even make letter puppets of our own.  So come start the school year off with your 26 new best friends.

 

RECEIVE A FREE BOOK TO TAKE HOME AT THE END OF THE WORKSHOP.

 

Recommended for 2-5 year olds, but EVERYONE is welcome! 

 
Natasha.jpg

Natasha Mirny is a stage director, choreographer, performer, and founder of the Happy Theater. She started her career as a stage director of one of the largest puppet theaters in Moscow, Russia and has been running her small professional theatrical company since 2011. Natasha is a dedicated teacher who works with students of all ages, and enjoys working with kids from 3 to 15 the most. Her background is in pantomime, puppetry, and physical theater. Natasha is a faculty member at several theaters in DC metro area – Synetic, Imagination Stage, TheatreLab, Wolf Trap.


SATURDAY, AUGUST 11TH, 2018
11 AM - 12 PM

LOCATION: PROJECT CREATE STUDIO
2028 MARTIN LUTHER KING, JR. AVENUE SE, SECOND FLOOR
WASHINGTON, DC 20020

 

Island Adventures 

 

Teaching ArtistsAbdou Muhammad and Miguel Aubertin 

 

Join Inner City-Inner Child as we take a trip down to the clear waters of the Caribbean Islands: Jamaica, St. Lucia and Cuba!  With the drum and guitar duets of Miguel Aubertin and Abdou Muhammad, learn about the different cultures of the Caribbean through songs, dance, and books.  Pack your bags for a fun filled morning. Be sure to leave room in your tummies for yummy Jamaican treats provided by a local Caribbean restaurant. 

 

RECEIVE A FREE BOOK TO TAKE HOME AT THE END OF THE WORKSHOP.

 

Recommended for 2-5 year olds, but EVERYONE is welcome! 

 

 

Abdou started playing the Djembe when he was 3 years old. He has received extensive training from Songa of the Valley, David Rock, Ezibu Muntu, Melvin Deal, Papa Aziz, and his godfather and whom is he name after, Abdou Kounta. Abdou’s family moved to Richmond, VA and he joined Ezibu Muntu. He became the lead drummer for Ezibu Muntu at the age of 11 years old and held the position until he was 19 years old. Continuing his journey, Abdou moved to the Washington, DC area, where he has performed with African Heritage, Coyaba Dance Theater, Soul In Motion, KanKouran, Elegba Folklore Society, Ezibu Muntu, Green Beats, The Washington Ballet, Dance Place, Step Afrika, and many more. Abdou has also performed for Fela!, the Broadway play in DC, the National Slave Ground Anniversary in Richmond, VA, the Nigerian Embassy Celebration, the NACA Conference, and at the National Cathedral School.