"KASSUMAI", African Music and Dance Troupe, was founded in 2003 by Ndongo Lucky Diop at Harambee Community School.
"KASSUMAI" comes from the "JOOLA" "Diola" pronounced 'Jolla' Tribe in Senegal West Africa. It means, "May peace be with you" but it's used as "Hello."
With "KASSUMAI" Lucky Diop shares with the youngsters, his vision of a peaceful and positive community. He utilizes his gift to unite people of different cultures, generations, and social status. As he conveys his message of peace, love, joy and unity through his songs, he also uses his talent to help eradicate violence in the community. Indeed, "KASSUMAI" creates an environment where teenagers can learn and interact in a positive manner. Not only does it raise their level of confidence, it also helps them develop strong leadership skills. The music helps them to better understand their African culture and tradition.
Only two weeks after its creation, "KASSUMAI" has moved from being an African Dance and Drumming Youth Troupe to Milwaukee's first Youth African Music and Dance Band. The band, which has eight musicians and eight dancers, is comprised of students from several Milwaukee area schools; Central City Cyberschool, High School of the Arts, Harambee Community School, Marshall High School and Rufus King High School. Lucky also works with talented adult musicians in Wisconsin and other states of the country for the betterment of the group.
"KASSUMAI" is a troupe which plays Traditional and Modern African Music, Afro-Jazz, Afro Hip-Hop and World Music.
"Kassumai" is a troupe set to perform for any occasions; parties, ethnic festivals, weddings, concerts etc.... With its mixture of African instruments (drums, kora, balafon) and modern instruments ( bass guitar, keyboards, drum sets) you will be guaranteed a unique performance.
In summer 2003, "KASSUMAI" was placed second out of ninety bands that competed during the MTG and Summerfest youth band contest in Milwaukee