worked on Videography; DVD production

Katrina Survivor Benefit

A Performance in Dance and Music

Associated Students of Laney College,
Laney College Dance Department, The Katrina Relief Committee,
and Kamau Seitu’s Brass Band “Treme Steppers” present the
2006 Annual Spring Production…

“Laissez Les Bon Temps Rouler!”
“Let the Good Times Roll!”

An Evening in the Quarter


Katrina Survivor Benefit

A Performance in Dance and Music

Friday, May 12, 2006                                         7:00 PM
Saturday, May 13, 2006                                     5:00 PM

Laney Theater
900 Fallon Street, Oakland CA 94607
Mistress of Ceremonies:                           Yuri Hinson

Scene I - Congo Square

The Mandingo Suite is the celebration of harvest season when the young people return from the traditional initiation bush and they gather in the village square. It is comprised of three dances: first, the Nyaka; then, the Ching or Ochingo, which is respectively the male or female return from the initiation; and then Jambadon or Bantaba, when the whole village comes to celebrate.  You will see foot dancing, like boot dancing, similar to the acrobatic Juba, which was common in the square.  Our Thursday night West African class will perform Nyaka or “the gathering,” which is the rite of passage, equivalent to a debutante fête.

Choreographers: Zak and Naomi Diouf

Drummers: Zak Diouf            Madiou Diouf          Darian Lafoucade

Dancers:   Tera Agyepong          Esther Dawolo          Love Ellen                   Jordan Hurst
                  Latoy Lewis-Varnedoe   Yaminah Omari         Lynette Parker         Justin Purnell
                  Joann Ruckman         Tamara Thrower      Imani Williams          Tamisha Williams

Nago is a dance of war that can bring confusion and chaos.  Mahi is a dance of the feet.  The waving of arms symbolizes wiping out negativity and restoring peace in the community.  The Hurricane Katrina disaster brought confusion and chaos to the New Orleans area.  Yet the people came together to bring about peace.
Special thanks to Blanche Brown, renowned Haitian dance teacher in the Bay Area.

Choreographer: Linda Johnson

Drummers:  Ralph Eaglefeather Peet      Gaku Watanabe           Karen

Dancers:     Saturday Haitian Dance Class
                    Laura Berton             Margaret Byron       Tiffany Crawford    Kahlelah Croom
                    Esther Dawolo          Lakiesha Golden        Cynthia Lewis            Mary Jane Manuel

Anne Sunderland

Choreographer:  Carolyn Himes

Drummers:   Ralph Eaglefeather Peet       Fast Eddie

Dancers:   Mya Bell                     Jamoke Blue              Margaret Byron
                  C. Amina Grant         Roma Eaglin               Wendy Eaglin Kelley  
                  Adriana K. Kent        Erin Morris
                  Mildred Mosley        Stacey Sandeford

Congo Square was the place where enslaved Africans were free to worship,  conduct religious ceremonies, picnic, sell goods, and enjoy the Sunday afternoon.  It was a time when drummers and dancers could preserve their heritage in music and dance, and celebrate the harvest as demonstrated in the Juba dance.  The Congo is a social dance derived from the people of the Congo.  And, Habitant, a funky, energetic peasant dance, celebrates life, sexuality, and community by the Haitians.

Choreographer:  Lynn Wethers-Coles

Drummers:         Ralph Eaglefeather Peet      Gaku Watanabe
                            Fast Eddie    James Columbus   Justin Purnell
                            Nicholas Salgado   Amaranth Modacure

Dancers:              Tiffany Crawford    Shaeedah Deal      Jacquelyn Dabbs
                             Ameshia Gabriel     Misty Horn            Mary Jane Manuel
                             Gazania Mccoy      Carolyn Norr        Shaunah Ray
                             Joann Ruckman      Patricia Sanchez   Lila Wiley Donna Williams


Scene II - French Quarter

“A Change Is Gonna Come” by Sam Cooke

Was there a disaster waiting to happen before the hurricane occurred in New Orleans?  Did the government know the levies would break due to lack of environmental maintenance?

Choreographer: Linda Johnson

Dancers:             Tuesday Night Jazz Class
                            Myra Allen, Margaret Byron, Kahlelah Croom, Esther Dawolo
                            Jene Levine, Yan Jun Luo, Mary Jane Manuel


This piece, "Sistahs" is taken from the song “Miss Celie’s Blues” which is from the "Color Purple Soundtrack".  It’s simply about helping out someone who is in need after experiencing great pain, and through a type of sassy and fearless strength, getting through it all.

Guest Choreographer: Colette Eloi, Artistic Director of El-Wah Movement
                                       and former Laney student

Dancers: Yuri Hinson, Jaimie Smith

“Way Down Yonder In New Orleans” by Creamer and Layton
(performed only on Saturday, May 13th)

Guest Artists: Debbie DeCoudreaux, vocalist accompanied by Tammy Hall

Choreographer: Lynette DeFazio

Dancers:             Jorge Mendoza and John Anthony
                            with Alexandra Burns, Gavriella Diskin, Tracee Henson, Eva Lane,
                            Lauren Lee, Barbara Lundburg, Iulia Moldovan, Milta Ortiz,
                            Jessica Robinson, Madeline Stewart, Nicole Wilson


A Community Outing to Celebrate the Drum by Bobi Cespedes

In the French Quarter on a lovely evening, it was common for people to gather there to listen to music.  There would be Jazz bands, Blues bands, Brass bands and Drumming groups.  This was a celebration of the community coming together.  Let the party begin.

Choreographer:  Linda Johnson

Dancers:  Friday Night Salsa Class & Members of Tuesday Jazz Dance Class

Ignacio Barajas         Rochelle Conner       Esther Dawolo
Lakiesha Golden      Jose Gonzalez           Amina Grant
Edgar Herrera           Pamela Klein             Mary Jane Manuel
Yeni Suhingrat          Vincent Valle            Shirley Valderrama 
Cheryl Walker          Franciscus
Wiryawan Dee Williams                 Phyllis Woodward


Choreographer: Carolyn Himes

Trap Drummer: Ralph Eaglefeather Peet

Music: “Dat's Mardi Gras”and “Black Sweat” by Prince

Dancers: Saki McCary Bonds     Theresa Gurrey        Jah'Meia Hill
                Sarah Kester                  Winnie Li                 Milta Ortiz
                Veronica Perez             Laura Pruitt

Siko is the gathering of the village to celebrate and have a good time.  The celebration in the French Quarter comes out of this tradition.

Choreographers: Zak and Naomi Diouf

Drummers: Zak Diouf            Madiou Diouf            Darian Lafoucade

Dancers: Friday West African Dance Class

Jerry Bailey       Helen Black      Amanda Bolton    Kendra Boyd
Tammy Burns   Kana Carlisle    Hagino Fujita        Deida Garcia
Nikita Gibbs     Carolyn Goree  Natisha Griffin      Lucrecia Griffith
Pat Juarez-Gordiano         Latoya Mays     Cara Mcclendon
Gazania McCoy Malika Omawale  Chanelle Patrick    Briyana Robinson      Joann Ruckman     Claudia Sanchez    Tamara Thrower      Laura Todaro
Chinyere Tutasshinda         Renika Williams       Christine Witherspoon

Special thanks to:

Laney Katrina Relief Committee

Associated Students Laney College-ASLC          Melvin Haywood
(the ASLC underwrote this entire benefit!)

President: Odell Johnson, the President whom everyone loves

Dean: Patrick Kriwanek

Theatre Manager, Ligts: Jim CaveStage

Manager: Shalonda IngramAssistant Stage

Manager: Christina Grappo

Guest Choreographer: Collette Eloi

Production Assistant: Yuri Hinson

Lighting Assistant: Gretchen Werner

Sound: Roshanda Parker

Videographer: Yoko Tsuda

Program Designer: Mary Jane Manuel

Caterers: Palate Pleasures Catering –      1414 66th  Street
Berkeley, CA 94702
(510) 535-1559
(510) 535-1659 FAX


Laney College Cosmetology Department
2006 Dance Production Class

Laney College Dance Department