The Wula Africa Trip, now in it's 19th year, offers students from around the world the chance to study, perform, and immerse themselves in the culture of Guinea, West Africa. Under the guidance of Master Drummer M'Bemba Bangoura, students receive daily drum and dance classes, and attend performances, rehearsals, and celebrations. M'Bemba will teach and also chooses a variety of master drum and dance teachers to help students immerse themselves in the vast culture of Guinea.
We will visit the wonderful markets, beaches, and also take a trip to the Wula Drum Production Center, where the drums are hand made. Students can even have a drum custom built for them (at a discount).
Photos by Hasan Bakr and Christopher Duggan
We will spend 2-3 days in the capital city, Conakry, where Wula is organizing a New Year's International Drum and Dance Festival featuring a multitude of percussion groups, ballets, and dundunba parties - a great way to ring in 2017!
After January 1st, we will host the workshops in two beautiful, tranquil locations: The Island of Roume, and the beautiful village of Kinda.
A 2.5 hour drive from Conakry, Kindia is known for its vibrant culture, local markets, indigo fabrics, lush environment, and serene beauty.
Island of Roume
Is a stunning small island about a 45 minute boat ride off the coast of Conakry. A Very tranquil and peaceful beach - a perfect place to have classes!
We will have 2 drum and 2 dance classes daily (Monday-Friday), and we will attend performances and rehearsals including mask dances and other cultural traditions.
In addition to M’bemba teaching, we will have choice artists coming from Conakry and Boke to work with the students. M’bemba believes in the importance of studying both the drum and the dance. Students are encouraged to do both, as they like. Also, competent drummers can help play for the dance classes which is another great way to deepen your learning. Classes will be set by level: Beginning, Intermediate and Advanced.
Prices do not include airfare to and from Guinea
The food is a variety of delicious sauces with fish, chicken, rice, salads, and fresh breads. Bottled water will be served with every meal. Vegetarian options available. Please let us know if you have any food allergies or requirements.
You will need to book your ticket to Conakry, the capital city of Guinea. We will be there to pick you up . Your flight cost depends on which airline you use and where you are flying from. Some folks spend 2, 3, or 4 weeks, so we do ask you check with us to arrange your arrival and departure times within one or two days with the group.
We can arrange for your visa here in New York City. The visa cost is $100 and we can arrange to personally go to the embassy and get the visa for you, at No Extra Charge. It only takes us 3-4 days, instead of mailing it away for 4-6 weeks. We require your actual passport sent to us and we will get the visa and mail it back to you. Please send us your passport with a return Fed Ex envelope pre-paid and addressed to you. The visas are typically good for 3 months. If you plan to extend your stay in Guinea, please let us know and we can help arrange the details.
VaccinationsPlease look at the Center for Disease Control Website (www.CDC.gov) for required vaccinations to travel to Guinea, West Africa. A Yellow Fever shot is required, and we strongly urge everyone to get pills for malaria prevention.
Sickness and InjuryWula is not responsible for any of the costs associated with sickness or injury during your trip, but you will be fully taken care of in the event of any issues. We have years of experience in Guinea and know the best medical facilities, and will have plenty of people around to support you at all times.
SafetyYou will be traveling in a well established group and well cared for at all times. Like with any trip to a foreign country, you will need to take precautions with your valuables. You will have help and guidance in every situation, from shopping at the market, to enjoying a night out.