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African Footprint mesmerize audience at Folklore Festival

A dramatic fusion of the elements of Kpanlogo, Kundum, Bawa, Sikyi and Gahu by African Footprint International, last week received a loud applause at the Alsion Theatre in Sønderborg, Denmark.

In a magnetic performance, which forms part of the 2013 edition of the Triangle Folklore Festival, the group showcased the variety and beauty of traditional Ghanaian dance and music that have been effectively blended with components of Danish music.

With a cool blend of loud Ghanaian percussive instruments alongside guitars and remarkable voices from Danish musicians Mette Marie Jensen Ørnstrup / Mette Bak Nielsen, the group managed to capture the attention of the largely elderly audience, who cut in with intermittent applause.

Directed by Samuel Addison with Jens Pieter on guitar, Abraham Mensah on percussion alongside Kenyan acrobats, the production, which dilates on courtship, love, childbirth, religion and conflict is highly memorable.

Undeniably, it unfolded as a kind of snowballing manuscript that point to custom and culture as well as hints of history while recalling ancient story-telling traditions of Ghana.

Highly expressive / well-coordinated movements and infectious rhythms coupled with intense energy from the stage created an atmosphere of an African celebration, said Mia Perdesen, an anthropologist in Sønderborg.

“It was interesting to see Danish musicians on stage with their Ghanaian colleagues – what an amazing cross cultural collaboration”, added Brit Hansen, a musician / dancer from the capital Copenhagen.

Triangle Folklore Festival, which began in 1995, has witnessed the participation of fantastic folklore groups from all over the world. They have filled public squares in various cities with colourful folklore performances, which has been a great pleasure to the local people.

Several groups from Slovakia, Ukraine, France, Serbia, Lithuania, Turkey, Canada, Indonesia, Denmark and the Basque Country participated in Triangle Folklore Festival 2013.

A multi national group based in Cape Coast, African Footprint International is renowned for a subtle use of Ghanaian traditional rhythms, which they strikingly blend with western beats to create a new fusion that has captivated audiences in Europe, the United States and other parts of Africa.

Godsbanen, Royal Academy of Music (Århus), Addison’s Mighty Works Apps, African Footprint Legends, Keld Hosbond, Klejtrup Musikefterskole, Den Rytmiske Højeskole, Shanghai Akademi, Sydjurs Musikskole, Brandbjerg Højskole and www.artsghana.com are supporting the tour of Denmark.

By John Owoo
Sønderborg – Denmark