If You'd Like To Hire a Seattle Northwest Steel Drum Band, There is No Better choice than Hiring Bakra Bata!
The six member Bakra Bata Steel Drums Band began providing entertainment services in the Seattle Puget Sound area in 1984, under the leadership of Michael Shantz. They have created a highly original and distinctly American style entertainment that draws primarily from the root traditions of trans-Atlantic cultures as they have developed in Caribbean music. The principal instruments featured are the steel drums (also known as "steel pan drums"), played in combination with a fascinating variety of other Caribbean musical instruments. The unusual instrumentation is a visual and aural delight for audiences, and the repertoire, rich with original material emphasizing rhythmic modes and dance beats, creates and upbeat joyous ambience. Bakra Bata has appeared at theaters, universities, children's events, and over 200 art fairs and indoor and outdoor festivals across the United States, Canada, Mexico, and Brazil. Attendance at these events has ranged from 10,000 to over a million. Wherever they play, there is a spontaneous connection with the audience that creates an exiting atmosphere perfectly suited to high density indoor and outdoor events. The group has a long association with professional dancers, and is thus able to present full or abbreviated entertainment programs of Caribbean music, theater, masquerade, and dance utilizing up to six dancers. The dance repertoire consists of traditional and contemporary works and, of special relevance to open air events, processional pieces featuring colorful costumes, beautiful masks, steel drums, and other enchanting instruments. With such an extensive repertoire, event organizers can select different combinations of programs to suit their specific entertainment needs.
Their music is a participatory celebration of African-American culture in sight, sound, and movement. They have an audience rapport that most bands only give lip-service to.
Jon Kertzer, Rocket Music Magazine
They epitomize the synthesis of cultures that is ongoing throughout the world. We [art presenters] have a responsibility to present art that speaks out not only to what is unique about other cultures, but also how differing cultures impact each other in positive ways. This group celebrates the idea of global community."
Bob Slater Programming Director, San Juan Capistrano Multicultural Arts Series
During my tenure as Vice President of Performing Arts at the Houston International Festival, an annual art and cultural celebration that attracts an audience of more than one million, I presented Bakra Bata' for two consecutive years, 1991 and 1992. Not only is the group comprised of talented artists, but also they are very adept at working in a variety of settings. They are able to arouse an audience with spontaneous street performance or to play a formal music set, as they did when I asked them to open for Brazilian musician and vocalist Milton Nascimento."
Ms. Baraka Sele, Performing Arts Consultant, Brooklyn Center for the Arts
Bakra Bata' was a hit with the festival patrons! Even our Artist Market artists, who are normally leery of large music groups because of their potentially loud volume, were pleased with Bakra Bata'. Your consideration in working with the artists in order to complement, but not overpower them, was noted and appreciated.
Ardath L. Pendergast, Arts Manager, Art Festival of Atlanta
Speaking as a native Seattleite, I was especially proud of the fine show you put on
Jenneth Webster, Producer, Lincoln Center Out-Of-Doors, Bellevue WA
The sheer artistry and exuberance of the group, coupled with its exacting professionalism, created and evening of theatre that held our audience entranced within the first five minutes, kept them there, and earned a prolonged standing ovation.
Virginia Pulis, Executive Director, Columbia Basin Allied Arts
It is a rare treat to have a performance by a group that works so energetically and as skillfully as Bakra Bata'. Their enthusiasm for their music is contagious. The Made Renting a Steel Drum Band Very easy!
Serni Solidarios, Director of College Activities, University of the Puget Sound, Tacoma WA