It was the fall of 2014 when Babab Ira Bond, Rite of Passage facilitator and African musician and folklorist of Philadelphia began his tutelage of 5 young men at the Imhotep Charter School. Demetrius Huggins, Jabari Tate, Hassan King Nkosi Newkirk and Kidane Watts were those young men. Since then they have had gains in both experience and maturity in the art in which they have studied. Each of them has gained more knowledge of the African art of percussion in which they loved. They also gained within Baba Ira a mentor, friend, family member and father figure. Having a greater understanding about themselves, they began to get a better understanding of Africa and their place in the African Diaspora.
Participating in a Rite of Passage program has taught them through ritual the true definitions of manhood and the importance of responsibility while taking their choices seriously. Now into their 4th year of intense study of the djembe drum and dance traditions, the young apprentices and students would like to travel to Mali, West Africa with their teacher Ira Bond.
Ira has traveled to Mali, West Africa every year since 2007 when he received an honorary degree from the National Ballet of Mali and Antioch University. He is currently in his 28th year of practicing Drum, Dance and Mask traditions. It is his dream, and the dream of his students to meet his teachers in Mali, West Africa. The opportunity to travel together to gaining more experience and understanding about their art and their connection to Africa, while strengthening their brotherhood would be invaluable. We are asking for any contributions that you can to go toward their plane tickets and expenses on this life changing journey.
Malidelphia will also be offering drumming performances for community events in exchange for in-kind donations to our fundraising efforts….
Or you could just make a donation at our gofundme page. Use the contact tab if you need for information. Thanks!!!