Beat the Winter Dol-Drums at Senegal’s Caro Diallo Dance Camp

November 25, 2009 at 2:40 pm | Posted in music, Senegal | Leave a comment
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by J. Thalia Cunningham

Up for an adventure that none of your friends have twigged to yet? Check out French-flavored West Africa this winter, where internationally recognized Senegalese dancer Caro Diallo teaches traditional dance and drumming at his beachside camp at Abene, in Senegal’s southern Casamance region, December through February. Guests stay in comfortable if not exactly luxurious African-style huts, dine on savory local cuisine, and participate in two dance classes daily (at the camp or on the beach) and/or one daily drumming class, taught by pros from Caro’s dance company, Black Soofa. You get out and about to explore real local life and nature, too, with jaunts to villages, markets, music and dance events, festivals, and canoe trips to explore island bird sanctuaries and coastal mangroves. It’s pretty affordable, too — from $520 to $680 per person per week, including all dance and drum classes, accommodation, and three meals daily. They can also arrange airport transfers and sightseeing in Dakar and the Gambia. Moving to throbbing drum beats echoing the beating of your own heart propels your body unlike any other kind of dance, and even if you’re a rank beginner, you’ll come out of this one with not just some nifty moves but very likely some significant new self-knowledge, too. It should certainly give you something to bang on about at your next cocktail party.  More info:,


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