Props to the homie Kat for adding to her legacy of dropping the illest Fela Kuti celebrations to date, Black President’s Day. If you’ve never been to a Lil SoSo event (Kat’s experience and event design agency) then you’re missing out on some of the most engaging and original events and creative salons, globally, and if you’ve never been to her Black President’s Day events then re-read what I just wrote.
The crowds and energy are amazing, and add to that world renown DJs, live musicians, the highly anticipated Queens Stroll, and video montages of Fela’s performances and speeches, and you’ve got yourself a memorable time. It sounds simple, right, but you’ve also got to have the mix of everything on top of experience or it simply won’t work.
Meet Tewodross “Teo” Melchishua (pronounced Tee-oh-droze Mell-keshu-ah) one of the panelists on our discussion this Sunday. Teo serves as an associate professor and program coordinator of visual communication and digital media arts program (VCDMA) and teaches courses in animation, motion graphics, cinematography, new media, hip-hop studies and contemporary (underground) art/design. Teo also works this through his film and digital media studio collective Visual Jazz, located in the Art Lives Here Business Incubator, in Mount Rainier, just in the Gateway Arts district of Prince George’s County.
Teo is a filmmaker, animator, visual artist, VJ, projection designer, educator and curator from Prince George’s County, Maryland, who received his BA in Art/Photographic Media from Morgan State University, and an MFA in Imaging & Digital Arts from UMBC.
His visual art, animation and films have been shown to audiences nationally and internationally.
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Our most recent SHAOLIN JAZZ L!VE performance at Tropicalia, where we fused our musical influences from our trip to Ethiopia, was our best SHAOLIN JAZZ L!VE performance (to date) and most definitely ranks up there as one of our top SHAOLIN JAZZ events, period. I can’t front, there were some elements of our production that we were late in cementing, but MAN did things work out!
Thanks to all of those who attended, props to Tropicalia for hosting us, salute to everyone that performed – giving the show the diversity and flavor that we were looking to create: Sound of the City, Wayna, Asheru and Rock, and Ras Nebyu and special thanks to everyone who helped to promote our show. For more recap photos click Read the rest of this entry
Our SHAOLIN JAZZ in Ethiopia programming is far from over. Join us on Saturday June 4th, at Tropicalia in DC, as we conduct a special edition of SHAOLIN JAZZ L!VE where we fuse our influences from our trip to Addis Ababa with our live performance. For tickets and more info click here.
Check out our “Ethiopia in Africa” T-shirt which is part of a series of product designed by @latenightgenius commemorating our SHAOLIN JAZZ in Ethiopia programming. Get yours at here.
Tonight we have the pleasure of performing for the opening of the Colonel John C. Robinson American Center in Addis (sponsored by the US Embassy Addis Ababa). The center, a new multimedia space, is furnished with brand new laptops, tablets, and other technological resources, and will provide training in the technology space – from graphic design to coding.
Busy day. Our 2nd workshop and performance that followed, at the African Union, was, by all accounts, a success. We started off our day by being interviewed by a Hip-Hop themed radio show called The Breakfast Show. From there we hustled to the African Union to conduct our 2nd workshop followed up by our SHAOLIN JAZZ L!VE performance.
This was probably my favorite edition of SHAOLIN JAZZ L!VE since we essentially brought DC to Addis. The performance included: Wayna Wondwossen (our guide and a DC native by way of Addis Ababa), Ra Brown (a spoken word artist and MC who happened to be in Addis for the week), and Kenny Allen (a DC native who’s made a strong name for himself in Addis’ entertainment and fashion scenes for over ten years).
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Today was dope. Got a chance to hit the African Jazz Village, which is a spot owned by the legendary Ethio-Jazz artist Mulatu Astake. When Mulatu is in town, he’s known to drop-in and jam with the band and even though he’s out of town, we got a chance to enjoy the sounds of the house band led by Mulatu’s protege Jorga Mesfin.
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As with any travel overseas, day 1 is pretty much all travel. That being said, the journey has been nothing short of eventful, yet moved by pretty quickly. Fortunately we made it safely to Addis and after a major hurdle at the airport (Wayna – so happy that you’re traveling with us) we, upon check-in at the hotel, were greeted by one of our heads from DC, Ra Brown, who’s staying in the same spot, a picturesque boutique hotel called Zeist Lodge (props to Ra for suggesting the spot).
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