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Spirit of West Africa, May 9

Come join us for drumming, dance, fashion and an authentic African marketplace at Seattle Center Festál:  Spirit of West Africa, 12 pm-8 pm, Saturday, May 9, in Seattle Center Armory. The traditions of West African countries come to life through this spirited festival of live music, film, art and games.

Now entering its 10th year at Seattle Center, this festival honors and celebrates the performance traditions of West Africa and the African diaspora. See musicians and dancers from Guinea, Benin, Ghana, Nigeria, Honduras, Senegal and Cuba perform on the Armory stage and participate in a West African dance workshop. Featured performers include master kora player Prince Diabaté, Gansango Music & Dance Company, Obo Addy’s Okropong, Udoka Cultural Dance, Hagucha Garinagu, Mapathe Diop & Family and Bembe Olele.

Browse the offerings of local vendors specializing in African products and crafts, including handwoven baskets, carvings, handmade jewelry, masks, singing bowls and drums. Visual artist Marita Dingus will lead an African doll making activity suitable for children of all ages. Nansare Consolata of Best of Both Worlds will send her designs down the runway, showcasing an aesthetic that unites traditional African textiles with modern tailoring. La Teranga will serve delicious West African specialties such as lamb and vegetarian mafe, chicken yassa and a variety of refreshing beverages.

In 2015, Seattle Center Festál explores the “art of culture” in 23 celebrations on weekends throughout the year. The events, organized by ethnic/cultural organizations in partnership with Seattle Center, make use of indoor and outdoor spaces on the grounds and offer wide-ranging entertainment, food, visual displays and exhibits and hands-on learning opportunities.

Seattle Center Festál is a program of Seattle Center Productions. Admission is free-of-charge. For more information on Spirit of West Africa and other Seattle Center public programming, click on Seattle Center or call 206 684-7200.

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