Friday, March 28, 2014

Wanda's Picks Radio Show, Friday, March 28, 2014 featuring Cultural Odyssey Founder, Idris Ackamoor

We celebrate with Founder and Artistic Director of Cultural Odyssey 35th Year Celebration Apr. 3-5, 2014, Idris Ackamoor & Rhodessa Jones.

Mr. Ackamoor is a multi-instrumentalist, composer, tap dancer, actor, director and producer. He is the founder and Executive/Co-Artistic Director of Cultural Odyssey. Idris curates and produces the Cultural Odyssey Performance Festival, and also records and tours with his acclaimed jazz ensemble. Visit

Ms. Jones is an actress, dancer, singer, writer, and teacher, Ms. Jones is Co-artistic Director of Cultural Odyssey and Founder/Director of the Medea Project: Theater for Incarcerated Women. Rhodessa tours her performances and speaks to "Theater for the 21st Century: art which precipitates community transformation.

Lyrika Holmes joins us as featured artist at the 35th Anniversary gala. Ms. Holmes is an
International performing artist "Lyrika Holmes" is an African-American recording artist, singer, harpist, songwriter and teacher. Lyrika was born and raised by her parents in St. Louis, MO. Lyrika started playing the piano at the age of 5. In junior high her parents encouraged her to step out of the box, and play something different, this is when she made the switch to harp. Since that day, Lyrika has been showing us just how hot the harp can be.

We close with Joanna Haigood, Artistic Director and co-founder of Zaccho Performance Dance Company about Dying While Black and Brown, a performance and panel discussion Friday-Saturday, April 4-5, 2014. Friday evening at 8 (the panel follows) and Saturday at 2 p.m.(performance) at Zaccho Studios, 1777 Yosemite Ave #330, in San Francisco's Bayview Hunter's Point. Visit

We are also joined by dancers Antoine Hunter and Travis Santell Rowland.

First commissioned by the San Francisco Equal Justice Society, Dying While Black and Brown focuses on capital punishment and the disproportionate numbers of incarcerated people of color. The piece was created by ZACCHO’s Artistic Director, Joanna Haigood in collaboration with renowned jazz composer, Marcus Shelby. It was created in response to the Equal Justice Society’s campaign to restore 14th Amendment protections for victims of discrimination including those on death row.
"The piece Dying While Black & Brown impacted me in a very profound way, because it took me back to a place emotionally that allowed me to reconnect with the tragedy of the past 18 years of my life, and then it also reminded me of the triumph of winning back my freedom." -Anthony Graves, Texas Defender, Former Death Row Inmate


Travis Santell Rowland is an American interdisciplinary performing artist who holds BA degrees in both Drama (Popular Theatre) and Dance (Performance & Choreography) from San Francisco State University where he served as Student Artistic Director for the University Dance Theater in 2005/6, and was honored by the School of Music & Dance with the award of Outstanding Student in Performance.

His solo performance and choreography of Residual Sugar (2006) was featured in the American College Dance Festival Association's (ACDFA) Southwest Regional Conference Gala Awards Concert in January 2007. He began training in hip hop dance, went on to study modern and contemporary forms, and is currently hired for projects under TrAvIsMoVeS. The breadth of his performance experience spans the mediums of hip hop/contemporary/modern dance, physical/dance/children’s theatre, drag (as Qween), film, opera, and site-specific art.

His active athletic background includes competitive gymnastics, wrestling, football, track, baseball, swimming, volleyball, and kickboxing. He has performed for Paco Gomes & Dancers, Della Davidson’s Sideshow Physical Theatre, Emily Keeler, Printz Dance Project, TalisMANIC Physical Theatre, Aura Fischbeck Dance, Natalie Greene, Fauxnique/Monique Jenkinson, the Tim Carr Project, Kendra Kimbrough Dance Ensemble, Cathleen McCarthy & Dancers, Deborah Slater Dance Theater, Kevin Clarke/Falsetta Knockers, Raissa Simpson’s Push Dance Company, requisitedance, Jetta Martin, Funsch Dance Experience, Amie Dowling, trixxie carr, Crowded Fire Theater, Urban Opera, and in Taylor Mac’s The Lily’s Revenge at Magic Theatre. Presently, he enjoys performing as a creative collaborator with the Erika Chong Shuch Performance Project, the House of Glitter, Erling Wold's Fabrications, California Shakespeare Theater, Joanna Haigood’s Zaccho Dance Theatre, and Peter Griggs’ Burning Monk Collective.

Antoine Hunter is an African American Deaf and Hard of Hearing Choreographer, Dancer, Dance instructor, model, actor and poet. Hunter was born deaf and was raised Oakland, California and began dancing with Dawn James at Skyline High School.

He has studied West African Dance with Master C.K. and Betty Ladzekpo, and studied at the Paul Taylor Summer Intensives in 2003 and 2004 as full scholarship.

He is a lover to dance. You may had seen him in commercial or music video. Had performed and taught all over USA and all over the world such as, Rome, London, Cuba, Africa and so on.

He also has performed with Savage Jazz Dance Company, as dance artist/performer/jazz instructor; he has also performed with Nuba Dance Theater, Sins Invalid, Sonic Dance Theater of Epiphany Productions, Lorraine Hansberry Theatre, Alayo Dance Company, Cat Willis, Push Dance Company and Robert Moses’ Kin Dance Company, Sign Dance Collective AKA. Signdance Theatre International, Dance Captain for an commercial, choreographer for Amerikana The Musical, and many more.

Mr. Hunter has attended the California Institute of the Arts and is studying toward a B.A at St. Mary’s College of California L.E.A.P. He later becomes Founder/Director of Urban Jazz Dance Company 2007. A faculty member at East Bay Center of the Performing Arts, Dance-A-Vision, Youth In Arts, Shawl and Anderson Dance Center, Ross Dance Company, just to name a few.

During Mr. Hunter many years of performing and Choreographing for other company from many part of the world, he later realized his passion, goals, calling and said “My Goals I believe that all people are born with an element of creativity.

Therefore, I believe that arts itself, whose foundation is creative, is as an essential element of self-discovery. It is my goal to help people realize their creative self through dance. Another goals are to:


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