Bonga is an accredited teaching artist who leads upbeat interactive sessions for kids of all ages in educational workshop settings. With traditional percussion instruments, dances, and songs from Haiti, Bonga helps students learn developmental skills and discover their own musical abilities. Curriculum goals are integrated into each session and programs are customized for various age groups from preK-12.

Programs can be customized for the following formats:

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Developmental Skills
Listening, cooperation, counting, motor skills and fundamentals of music are among those developed. Coordination, following direction, call & response, carrying a tune, moving to the beat and keeping time are all taught in Bonga's patient and encouraging style.
Tree Meetings and Drum Demos
Rare handcrafted drums and other traditional instruments from Bonga's collection are demonstrated in terms of their raw materials, cultural and rhythmic purposes. Bonga explains how Haitian drums are crafted and utilized. Students are gathered around a tree (or log) and asked to imagine how a treel and a goatskin could eventually become a musical instrument. This inspires critical thinking about where sounds begin and how elements transform. For more detail please check out Haitian Drums.
Cultural History
Bonga discusses the origins of Afro/Caribbean rhythm and its use in popular songs and the purpose music serves in our daily lives. He explains the purpose and significance of music, dance and drums in Afro-Caribbean culture and he considers the purpose music serves in our own lives. For more detail please see Haitian Drums.
Rhythm Practice
Kids learn to play traditional Haitian instruments: drums, tcha-tchas, and horns. They practice basic rhythms and songs from Haiti. Using hands, feet, and voice, kids are asked to tune inside and listen to their own sounds and rhythms. Everyone is encouraged to improvise using drums, body percussion and vocals. *Note: Residencies include practice sessions for technique improvement.
Dance & Folklore
Bonga presents traditional stories and teaches simple movements, dances and songs that correspond with practice rhythms.
Drum Clinic
With a hollowed log, goatskin, and rope, a series of "drum clinic" construction/repair sessions are held in an open workspace. Students build the drum and construct their own tcha-tchas (maracas) from sticks, gourds, and seeds using traditional Haitian techniques. When the instruments are ready, everyone joins a drum circle.
Drum Circle Format
The workshop can be arranged as a drum circle with room to move in the middle. Everyone is encouraged to drum, dance, and jam in a dynamic session finale. Optional: Lullaby with mbira (thumb pianos) for pre-schoolers.

For bookings, planning sessions and more information, please contact us:

phone: 917-484-2668

 Curiculum Vitae and Educational References.