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Music and Activism

A performance at the Basement, City Screen York, by The Ladies of the Midnight Blue and John Otieno Rapasa.

The Ladies of Midnight Blue are an Afro-Latin percussion & brass duet who have performed all over the world for various festivals, charity benefits, peace rallies, and protest marches. Their music consists of powerful and upbeat combinations of percussion, brass, vocal chants, and mbira arrangements that inspires dancing and calls for audience participation. Today, the duet is comprised of Hannabiell Sanders - Percussion, Bass Trombone, mbira, and voice, and Yilis del Carmen Suriel - Percussion, mbira. In the last 7 years they have been workshop facilitators and guest artists for youth programs, grade schools, universities, and community organizations. Their art and music workshops focus on community building and raising awareness concerning issues of inequality on all levels.

Born in Nairobi, Kenya, Rapasa is a performing artist, multi­instrumentalist, vocalist, and dancer with roots in traditional music. Specializing in Nyatiti and Adung, Rapasa has studied with Owiny Sigoma and toured internationally. Rapasa loves to transmit his passion as a way to give back to the community.