Thank you for your outpouring of support while we wait just a little bit longer to welcome you into our new home at RestorationART in Bed-Stuy! Many arts organizations face the reality that Brooklyn, one of the most creative places in the world, also has some of the most expensive real estate. Cumbe has been grappling with this reality for the past couple of years, as we work to build a home for the amazingly rich universe of dance and music from Africa and its diaspora. We’re thankful, though, that our current struggle is no longer ‘where’ we will be, but ‘when’ will we be able to dance with you and our wonderful teachers in a lovely new space.
We’re especially excited to offer our classes as the newest arts organization-in-residence at RestorationART, the cultural centerpiece of Bedford Stuyvesant Restoration Corporation, and a creative complex committed to world-class dance, music, theater, visual arts and conversation in the epicenter of Black culture, Central Brooklyn. Our partners at RestorationART have been working non-stop to finalize the renovation of our new dance studios and we’re grateful to them for their strong support.
Have you ever watched those renovation shows where things seem to go haywire right before it all comes together? For Cumbe, that’s what it feels like right now! But we can’t wait to celebrate soon with all of you. As Lamine Thiam, our love-filled Sabar teacher reminded us: “We’ve been waiting for two years, a few weeks more is nothing. It will be worth it!”
In the meantime, you can still enjoy West African and Rumba, every Tuesday and Saturday respectively, at Gibney Dance, as well as our African/Diaspora workshop series on the third Sunday of every month. This month, on 10/15, the spotlight is on Afro-Haitian, with Julio Jean!
September 22, 2017
Dear Cumbe Community,
We have to postpone tonorrow’s Community Dance Day celebration, along with the start date of our toddler and adult classes (originally scheduled for 9/25). While our new home at RestorationART is close to completion, it will take a little more time to put the finishing touches on the newly renovated dance studios.
We’ll announce new dates for Community Dance Day and the start of our classes soon – stay tuned!
However, Cumbe staff (including me) will be in Restoration Plaza this Saturday (9/23) from 12:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. offering refreshments, $5 Cumbe t-shirts and tote bags, and an opportunity to win free classes at Cumbe. Come out and say hi!
We are also working with Dance Caribbean COLLECTIVE to gather donations and goods for those affected by the recent hurricanes. We appreciate any donations of money, canned goods and sanitary and personal care products which will be delivered directly to families in the Caribbean.
Cumbe is excited to be in the final stages of our journey to re-establish a Brooklyn home for African and Diaspora Dance. We look forward to welcoming everyone to celebrate and dance with us in this important new dance space very soon. We are grateful to our teachers and students for their unwavering support, and to RestorationART for their untiring efforts to create spaces for arts and culture in Bedford Stuyvesant and surrounding Brooklyn communities.
And remember – Lamine Thiam’s West African class and Stevie Insua’s Rumba classes continue at Gibney! (Note that there is no Rumba class this Saturday, 9/23, but Stevie will be back on 9/30.)