Monroe Free Library rocks to a different drummer

| 21 Feb 2012 | 10:48

    MONROE-Everybody was allowed to make noise in the Monroe Free Library on a recent Friday night. African drummer Maxwell Kofi Donkor led a crowd of over 75 in an evening of rhythm, dance, and storytelling. The show was part of the library's varied Summer Reading Program, led by Rebecca Lynn, head of Children's Services. This energetic event was popular with all ages. One family brought their own bongos and rhythm instruments. Adults and children pounded on the 15 drums handmade by Kofi, learning ever more complex call-and-response numbers. Six students from the drummer's drum and dance ensemble, Sankofa, helped the happy patrons to master the overlapping rhythms.Kofi, a native of Ghana in West Africa, has been drumming and performing for over 30 years. He first studied at his grandfather's knee in his Asante village. He went on to graduate from the University of Science and Technology in Kumasi, Ghana. His studies included the art and culture of his native land, leading to his current career as a cultural educator. "Part of our mission at the Monroe Free Library is to provide multi-cultural experiences for the community," says Mrs. Lynn."People really enjoyed themselves despite the cramped quarters. Moving to the new building will help us serve the community even more." "Drumming is the heartbeat of humanity," said Kofi, "It heals both body and spirit, bringing them into a perfect balance." The humanity present at the Monroe Free Library for the drumming program certainly showed delight of body and spirit at the chance to dance and drum. "We have more fun programs coming up," said Mrs. Lynn, "There'll be other chances to make noise in the library."