Ranked as one of the top African American dance companies in the country, Step Afrika! will perform at Rochester Institute of Technology at 7 p.m. on Wednesday, March 8, in the university’s Ingle Auditorium. The event is free and open to campus and the general public. Participants can meet the performers at a reception that will follow in RIT’s Student Alumni Union lobby after the performance.
Step Afrika! is part of RIT’s Black History Month celebration that includes activities and performances such as:
· Black History Game Show at 7 p.m. on Tuesday, Feb. 28 in the Fireside Lounge, located in RIT’s Student Alumni Union. The event is free and refreshments will be served.
· Miss Black & Gold Scholarship Pageant, at 5 p.m. on Saturday, March 4 in the Vignelli Center. Tickets are $25. The pageant is sponsored by RIT’s Mu Sigma chapter of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity. Participants can register online.
Founded in 1994, Step Afrika is the first professional dance company dedicated to the tradition of stepping, a blend of African, percussive and contemporary dance. Using dynamic footsteps, dance moves, clapping, drumming and the spoken word, the touring company has brought the artistic and cultural heritage of stepping to national and international audiences.
This is the first time Step Afrika! has come to RIT, said Stephanie Paredes, manager of multicultural programs for RIT’s Division of Diversity and Inclusion and Center for Campus Life.
“Stepping has not only cultural significance, but also historical significance. We are excited to have Step Afrika! give us both during what is sure to be a high-energy, interactive performance,” she said.
According to a recent review in the UNC Charlotte News, “Their synchronization is airtight, their sense of rhythm is fail safe, their energy is unmatched, and they’ve got a likable, mischievous sense of humor. But it’s only after seeing their performance in its entirety that one can appreciate a perhaps more important quality. These dancers are committed to a mission of preserving the traditions of their art form.”
The performance at RIT is sponsored by the Division of Diversity and Inclusion, the Center for Campus Life and the Alumni Association. Contact Paredes by email at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information about different Black History Month events sponsored by student clubs and organizations.