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Pre-July 2009 Press Archives

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3/27/2008 Step Afrika kicks off Diversity Week

press image McMINNVILLE – The African art form of stepping will be showcased in a performance by Step Afrika on Monday, April 14, at 8 p.m. in the Richard and Lucille Ice Auditorium in Melrose Hall at Linfield College. The event will kick off Diversity Week, an annual celebration sponsored by the Linfield Activities Board.

Step Afrika is the first professional dance troupe dedicated to stepping. Created in 1994, the company has traveled throughout the world reaching thousands of viewers every year. Based in Washington, D.C., Step Afrika is a cultural ambassador for the United States and is regularly invited by American embassies to perform.

In 1994, the company co-hosted the first Step Afrika International Cultural Festival with the Soweto Dance Theatre in Johannesburg, South Africa. The goal of the festival is to bring artists from around the world to engage in dialogue and dance.

After its success in Africa, the troupe wanted to bring step to American youth. The company developed a performance highlighting the history of the dance, and after rave reviews in the Washington, D.C., area, began to tour across the United States. The show emphasizes themes of teamwork, academic achievement and cross-cultural understanding.

Step Afrika has been featured on CNN, BET, PBS and NPR. It has also been profiled in numerous books about the history of step and other forms of African dance.

The event is free and open to the public. For more information, contact Allison Lindell-Ross, cultural chair for the Board, at 503-883-2511 or allindel@linfield.edu.