Indiana State University Newsroom

Viver Brasil dancers and musicians to lead workshops and performances in Terre Haute

October 4, 2022

Teaching artists from the professional dance company, Viver Brasil, will offer music and dance workshops to local children at Benjamin Franklin Elementary School, master classes to Indiana State University students, and workshops for the ISU community and the general public on Oct. 10-13.

The university will host Viver Brasil on a four-day artist residency to celebrate the 50th anniversary of African and African American (AFRI) Studies and to promote generational understanding through Afro-Brazilian dance, music, and storytelling traditions. The residency will culminate in an evening showcase of music and dance presented by local students and community performers with artists from Viver Brasil.

Based in Los Angeles, California, Viver Brasil is a non-profit organization that specializes in Afro-Brazilian music and dance with experience in assisting the rejuvenation of communities through the arts.

Three events are open to the public at no cost:

--Afro-Brazilian Dance Workshop (with live drumming) at 7 p.m. on Tuesday, Oct. 11 in the large dance studio inside the Health and Human Services Building (use the door on 5th street/across the street from the Hulman Memorial Student Union).

--Lecture on "Ancestralidade/Ancestry and Spirituality in the Carnaval of Salvador, Bahia: Resistance in Motion," at 3 p.m. on Wednesday, Oct. 12, at the Events Area on the main floor of the Cunningham Memorial Library.

--Viver Brasil artists in Performance with ISU students at 7 p.m. on Thursday, Oct. 13, at University Hall Auditorium.

The residency is made possible partly by the Arts Project Support Grant funded by Arts Illiana, and the Indiana Arts Commission, which receives support from the State of Indiana and the National Endowment for the Arts. The grant project "Generational Listening: Dancing the Rhythms of Youth and the Chants of Elders," aims to recognize and celebrate 50 years of curriculum, scholarship, and creative programming that AFRI studies has brought to ISU while expanding community outreach for educational enrichment, youth development, and the promotion of intergenerational relationships.

"ViverBrasil is nationally known, and we are honored to bring them to Terre Haute to interact with our students, but also to help AFRI continue to offer school residencies that enhance access to the creative arts around the world," said Colleen Haas, core faculty member of the African and African American Studies program at ISU. "The group will provide inspiring and productive public workshops on campus and create community celebrations that reverberate with the joys and concerns within our own locale."

"ViverBrasil's dance repertoire is based on cultural history and social justice movements of African-descended people from Brazil and around the world. It takes cultural traditions and their embedded values beyond the stage and into the contemporary world. The artist-teachers-performers are equipped to engage all ages into the vibrant and mythical word of Afro-Brazilian percussion and dance that resonates with contemporary times."

Additional support is provided by the University Arts Endowment Committee at Indiana State University, as well as the Community School for the Arts, The Charles E. Brown African American Cultural Center, Cunningham Memorial Library, The College of Arts and Sciences, African and African American Studies, The Departments of History, Music, and the Department of Languages, Literatures, and Linguistics.