Sunday 13 January 2019
Time: 9pm - midnight
ID: Not Required
Rootmaster presents KAAGÔ BAND, Master drummer Henri Gaobi and friends first came together as Kaagô in 1992 with the aim of bringing Africa’s exciting live performance arts to events big and small, in and outside London, with virtuoso drumming displays that may also include a traditional zaouli masked dancer, stilt dancer, acrobat or fire act and other traditional instruments such as n’goni, kora or flute.
The early members included fellow Ivorians Simon Djo Bi, another celebrated master drummer now based in the USA who toured with Henri Gaobi as members of the Ballet National de Cote d’Ivoire and dancers Gaspard Zamble and Rose Zan Lou.
Kaagô has succeeded in bringing authentic African flavour to diverse events and music festivals, from WOMAD in the 1990s and 2007 to Port Lympne Nature Reserve to the launch of the Brixton Pound and Africa on the Square, for over 25 years, now making it the longest-running African performing arts group in the UK.
Big performances in 2017 and 2018 include London’s first African Francophone Music, Culture and Arts Festival, the Leytonstone Music Festival, Kenya & Friends in the Park, Africa on the Square in Trafalgar Square and at the iconic Sky Garden, all including traditional West African stilt and masked dancers.
Kaagô can perform as a small group (two or three drummers) at community events or as a full troupe of eight or more performers, including dancers. Workshops for beginners, intermediate and advanced drummers, adults and children, can be provided.
Three CDs of the group’s music have been produced and over 30 videos of more recent performances can be found on Kaagô’s playlist on Henri Gaobi’s Youtube channel.
Henri Gaobi is thought by many to be one of the finest exponents of traditional djembe playing in Britain. This Master Drummer is able to keep the traditional rhythms of the Ivory Coast alive within the context of breathtaking contemporary performances and workshops.