(WAYNE, NJ) -- On Tuesday, February 13th, the Shea Center for Performing Arts presents Step Afrika! - a group that blends percussive dance styles practiced by historically African American fraternities and sororities; traditional West and Southern African dances; and an array of contemporary dance and art forms into a cohesive, compelling artistic experience. The event begins at 7:00pm.
Founded in 1994 by C. Brian Williams, Step Afrika! is the first professional company dedicated to the tradition of stepping. Under Mr. Williams’ leadership, stepping has evolved into one of America’s cultural exports, touring more than 50 countries across the globe. Step Afrika! now ranks as one of the top ten African-American dance companies in the United States.
Performances are much more than dance shows; they integrate songs, storytelling, humor and audience participation. The blend of technique, agility, and pure energy makes each performance unique and leaves the audience with their hearts pounding.
Tickets are $10 and available for purchase online or by calling (973) 720-2371. The Shea Center for Performing Arts is located on the campus of William Paterson University (300 Pompton Road) in Wayne, New Jersey.
Step Afrika! promotes stepping as an educational tool for young people, focusing on teamwork, academic achievement and cross-cultural understanding. The Company reaches tens of thousands of Americans each year through a 50-city tour of colleges and theatres and performs globally as Washington, DC’s one and only Cultural Ambassador. Step Afrika! has earned Mayor’s Arts Awards for Outstanding Contribution to Arts Education (2005); Innovation in the Arts (2008); and Excellence in an Artistic Discipline (2012); and performed at the White House for President Barack Obama and the First Lady.
Step Afrika! is featured prominently at the Smithsonian’s new National Museum of African-American History & Culture with the world’s first stepping interactive. In 2017, Step Afrika! made its Off-Broadway debut with the critically-acclaimed production, The Migration: Reflections on Jacob Lawrence.
The Shea Center for Performing Arts is an intimate 922-seat theater built in 1965. The theater boasts a customized, state-of-the-art sound system, computerized lighting system and a unique seating/stage configuration that ensures a close performer/audience connection. Shea Center is air-conditioned and handicapped accessible
A wide variety of University events and visiting artists have appeared at the Center from legendary rock icon David Crosby, to the jazz great, Wynton Marsalis, from Margaret Thatcher to Stephen Sondheim. Each season the University Performing Arts produced WP Presents! hosts dozens of professional artists including musicians, theatre troupes and family artists representing a wide variety of genres. The Jazz Room Series features renowned and emerging jazz performers, as well as students from the University’s highly acclaimed jazz program. The Distinguished Lecturer Series presents an exciting line-up of speakers on topical issues ranging from the arts and culture to sports and politics in distinctive formats that enhance the link between the speakers and the audience.