Diamano Coura West African Dance Company
Diamano Coura West African Dance Company is a non-profit cultural
organization dedicated to the preservation and education of traditional
West African music, dance, theater, and culture. Since its inception,
Diamono Coura has implemented its mission through on-going workshops,
youth programs, lecture demonstrations, community outreach projects,
and creative partnership programs with renowned artist and performing
companies such as the Alvin Ailey Dance Company, San Francisco Ballet,
Les Ballets Africaines, and Dimensions Dance Company.
Diamano Coura offers a variety of on-going cultural classes, workshops,
private consulting and community services throughout the San Francisco
Bay Area. The company offers free weekly classes in drumming for women
along with a work-study program that allows numerous teens, low-income
adults and college students to participate in classes, workshops and
attend performances free of charge.
Artistic Director Naomi Diouf, an expert in West African dance,
has assisted and choreographed works for numerous companies including
San Diego Black Repertory Theater, the Dutch Theater Van Oosten in the
Netherlands and Belgium, Dimensions Dance Theater in Oakland and
Kankouran Dance Company in Washington, D.C. In 1998 and 1999 Naomi
collaborated with the San Francisco Ballet in the premiere of Lambarena.
Director Zak Diouf has combined a career as a choreographer and
performer with teaching. He has researched African music, dance, and
culture along with choreographing pieces for organizations such as
African-American Dance Ensemble in New York, Dimensions Dance Theater,
Harambe Dance Company, Phoenix and San Jose Symphonies. He holds a
Ph.D. in Ethnomusicology from U.C. Berkeley.