Tickets & Events

Balafon West African Dance Ensemble

KST Presents

It’s a celebration. In Guinea, we didn’t dance in buildings. We danced in the street. —Kadiatou Conte-Forte

The 2015 Black River African Dance Conference culminates in a performance of Sundiata Keita Celebration by Balafon West African Dance Ensemble.

Based on an African folk-myth, Sundiata is the tale of an exiled emperor who returns home to claim his throne. The story, handed down through generations of griots, is an enshrined part of the West African folk tradition, and partly inspired Disney’s The Lion King.

Led by revered dance artist Kadiatou Conte-Forte, Balafon West African Dance Ensemble has emerged as a Pittsburgh institution, one that combines intricate choreography and elaborate costumes with live music and song. This evening of dance celebrates Balafon’s contemporary perspective on West African traditions and culture—and the unique vitality of its intergenerational ensemble of dancers and musicians—in a program to inspire all ages with energetically charged, athletic dancing and resounding live percussion.

Part of KST’s World Stage Series, made possible with support from The Benter Foundation and contributors to the World Stage Fund.

Tickets & Details

Saturday, October 31, 2015
8p Performance :: 7p Pre-Show Mixer
Kelly Strayhorn Theater
5941 Penn Ave :: Map

Tickets for this event are available at any price. Simply choose the level that makes you happy—or name your own! All seats are general admission.


In addition to the evening performance, the Black River African Dance Conference includes dance and drum workshops as well as a marketplace at Obama International Academy on October 31 from 10 a.m. until 4 p.m. Complete details here.