• Faye Family Drummers Teach Art and Tradition


This past April, Suffolk had the pleasure of hosting the Faye family, drummers from Senegal, as part of the College of Arts and Science’s  Distinguished Visiting Scholars program. The Faye family’s two week program represents the continuation and transformation of the geuwel tradition (story-telling using music and dance) over generations. Vieux Sing Faye, the patriarch of the Faye family, is the Baj Geuwel Ndakarou, chief griot of Dakar, Senegal. Mouhamadou Moustapha Faye, son of Vieux, worked at the Daniel Serano National Theatre as a principal member of the National Ballet of Senegal. Malik Ngom, grandson of Vieux, is the lead drummer of Sing Sing Juniors.

On Monday, April 14th, the Fayes, along with Suffolk professor Robert Bellinger, gave a presentation on the geuwel tradition, replete with moving drum pieces.  On April 16th, a presentation was given on connecting language with movement where students and guests were encouraged to learn traditional dance moves and perform them with the drummers, and on April 22nd, a concert was given at the C. Walsh Theatre to an enthusiastic audience who were eager to join the drummers on stage in dance and movement.  The Faye family concluded their visit to Suffolk by joining the Sabar dance class for their final performance on April 23rd. 

More information about the Fayes and the Distinguished Visiting Scholars program can be found on the college website.

Please enjoy this selection of photos from the Faye family’s visit to Suffolk. 

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