Newcomb students dance to an international beat

NEWCOMB - Students at Newcomb Central School (NCS) stepped from the classroom to the stage this week as they drummed and danced with acclaimed performer Joe Sallins.

Sallins of La 'Jazz Productions, based in Springfield, Massachusetts was accompanied by drummers Backa Niang and Abdou Sar from Senegal. The trio makes up a program of teaching artists who travel to school across the country and in Canada with clinics, workshops and residency programs teaching children the value of performance arts.

The two-day residency at NCS culminated in a performance featuring local students who showcased the talents they acquired in such a short period of time.

" The halls were pulsating with a joyful energy and exuberant camaraderie throughout the school," said advisor Martha Swam.

Sallins has been visiting NCS for three consecutive years and everyone at the school is already anxious for his return.

"We all want them to come back," said Swan. "We truly appreciated this unique program in our school. It's exciting to start off the school year with a shared and unifying experience."

Sallins touts years of performing as a bassist, drummer, composer and teacher. He has several recordings out, the most recent being Ripple Effect Part 1,11, & 111. He has performed with the Uhuru Drummers, Matt "Guitar" Murphy of the Blues Brothers, Vishnu Wood, Charles Greenley, Dan Akroyd, and Lenny Baker of Sha Na Na. He has also toured the United States, Canada and Singapore with the band New Star. He now conducts clinics and workshops and hopes to continue with his appearances in local schools.

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