New Orleans Dance Festival takes over Tulane

June 28, 2013 11:00 AM

Alicia Duplessis Jasmin

Menahem Laurent

Menahem Laurent, a native of Port-au-Prince, Haiti, will teach Haitian dance to participants in the 2013 New Orleans Dance Festival. (Photo from Beverly Trask).

Haitian folkloric choreographer Menahem Laurent and master Haitian drummer Damas “Fan Fan” Louis will teach classes on the Tulane University uptown campus the first week of July as part of the 15th annual New Orleans Dance Festival.

The 2013 festival is open to the public and takes place Monday (July 1) through Friday (July 5).

One drumming class and one dance class will be taught daily. Classes will be held in room 300 of McWilliams Hall and cost $10 each.

Festival director Beverly Trask says she is excited about the extent of the collaboration with the local dance community. Collaborators include the Tekrema Center for Arts and Culture, the Ashé Cultural Arts Center, Luther Gray of Bamboola 2000 and Ausettua Jackson, an adjunct dance faculty member at Tulane.

Also unique to this year’s event is the opportunity for participants to take part in the Maafa Commemoration on Saturday (July 6) at Congo Square.

“Maafa is a celebration of ancestry and the spirit of slaves,” says Trask, an associate professor of dance at Tulane. “It will be a wonderful event for participants to experience.”

Drumming classes are from 5:45 p.m. until 6:45 p.m., Monday through Wednesday and dance classes follow from 7 p.m. until 8:30 p.m. On Thursday and Friday, drumming classes will begin at 9:45 a.m. and dance classes begin at 11 a.m.

The New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Foundation is sponsoring the 2013 New Orleans Dance Festival.

For more information, contact Beverly Trask at 504-812-4553.

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Tulane University, New Orleans, LA 70118 504-865-5000