Fif’ Ma’ch

Mama Yenunya — the queen mother of Baobab Tree Drum & Dance Community, and more widely known as Kathy Armstrong —  was honoured by the Ghanaian Association of Ottawa on March 5th. The occasion was the celebration of Ghana’s independence from British rule on the 6th of March, fifty-four years ago. Association president Kwaku Agyei presented Kathy with a plaque in appreciation of her “community participation”, acknowledging her years of dedication to Ghanaian culture in Ottawa, bringing the musical traditions of Ghana to the Ghanaian community, to their children, and, of course, to Baobab Youth, who bring this culture into the wider community. Mr. Agyei noted with gratitude that Baobab is always happy to perform traditional music and dance at gatherings of the Ghanaian community and acknowledged gratefully that, in the spirit of sharing these cultural riches, “they never charge us anything”. Following dances by Baobab Youth and singing from the children of the Ghana Language and Culture School of Ottawa, guests were treated to a truly delicious dinner of Ghanaian specialties presented by a parade of magnificent women dressed to impress. The evening ended with a lively and lovely dance party, with loud, loud, throbbing, infectious music from a DJ brought in from Montreal for the occasion. He spun a seamless set of evidently familiar tunes from the latest craze in Ghanaian pop music, a melding of Highlife and Hiphop called, simply enough, Hiplife. Much fun. Photos  of the occasion include Baobab board member Lina Asmah and manager Hayley de Bie.

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