May 31 - June 26, 2022
By Step Afrika!
Approximately 90 minutes including one 15 minute intermission
"poetic, choreographically rich"
Electrifying percussive dance fused with contemporary art forms fuels Step Afrika!’s latest production, Drumfolk, inspired by the Stono Rebellion of 1739 and the Negro Act of 1740 in South Carolina. State laws mandated that enslaved Africans could not assemble or use their drums which were used to signal the uprising. They took away the drums, but they could not stop the beat. This is the rich story of a movement that could not be stopped and transformed African American culture from then to the present day. The immersive production will be the first of three as part of a multi-year collaborative partnership between Step Afrika! and Arena Stage.
Prime Sponsorship for Drumfolk is generously provided by
Supporting Sponsorship for Drumfolk is generously provided by
The presentation of Drumfolk was made possible by the New England Foundation for the Arts’ National Dance Project, with lead funding from the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation and The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.
Lead Commissioning Support provided by Arts Emerson, Hancher Auditorium, Eugene M. Lang Foundation and the Strathmore Performing Arts Center. Additional support provided by the Krannert Center for the Performing Arts, The New Victory Theater, Delaware Art Museum, Meany Hall, The Soraya and the DC Commission on Arts and Humanities. Additional Production Support provided by the Publick Playhouse.
- Please note that due to the unique staging of Drumfolk, the North Section of the Fichandler Stage will be closed for seating.
- Please also note that select seats in the West and East Sections closest to the North Section will have obstructed sight lines. These seats are being sold at the special price of $41 for weekday performances and $51 for weekend performances. These include, in the West Section, Row F Seat 23; Row G, Seats 23, 25, 27; and Row H Seats 23, 25, 27; and, in the East Section, Row F, Seat 24; Row G Seats 24, 26, 28; and Row H, Seats 24, 26, 28.
- If you have any questions or concerns, please contact the Arena Stage Sales Office, Tuesday – Sunday, 12 p.m. – 8 p.m., at firstname.lastname@example.org or 202-488-3300.
EMANUEL "MANNY" CHACON
AGYEI KEITA EDWARDS
CONRAD R. KELLY II
VALENCIA ODEYKA EMONNI SPRINGER
STEVEN M. ALLEN
KENAAN M. QUANDER
C. BRIAN WILLIAMS
- Wednesday, June 8, 12:00 p.m.
- Tuesday, June 14, 12:00 p.m. (sold out)
- Wednesday, June 15, 12:00 p.m.
Drumfolk, the latest polyrhythmic percussive dance production by Step Afrika! is unquestionably great art.
DC Theater Arts
Step Afrika!’s fiery ‘Drumfolk’ dances to the beat of not-so-distant history
Step Afrika! brings ‘Drumfolk’ to Arena Stage, chronicling a little-known event in African American history
MATTER OF FACT WITH SOLEDAD O'BRIEN
How a Ban on Drums Inspired Hundreds of Years of Music
The Washington Post
The best things to do in the D.C. area: Drumfolk at Arena Stage
Voices of the Chesapeake Bay
Step Afrika! founder C. Brian Williams speaks with Michael Buckley
The Washington Post
Step Afrika’s Drumfolk brings the 1739 Stono Rebellion to life through the power of stepping
"A collaboration that underlines Arena’s commendable engagement with the art makers of the capital city"
Arena Stage announces three-year partnership with Step Afrika!