Mami Wata delivers the audience African mood and atmosphere combined with a cheerful feel through colourful music and dance. The Mami Wata group has performed actively since 1998 and is recognized and praised for its fresh and cheerful performances. The performers are dancers and musicians of various ages representing several fields and sharing similar interests including a deep interest towards multiculturalism. Some of the performers are professional dancers and musicians and some are active hobbyists. Mami Wata’s director and choreographer is dance teacher Mariana Siljamäki and the musical director is musician Jarmo Hovi. The group’s place of domicile is Jyväskylä. In addition to performances, we arrange dance and drumming courses for various groups. An afro dance lesson included in a bachelorette/bachelor party programme has also been very popular! For more information, please don't hesitate to contact us at info(at)mamiwata.fi.
Goal-oriented studies in West African dances are provided in Jyväskylän Tanssiopisto, a dance school offering basic arts education where we work as teachers. Besides dance lessons, an essential part of the education is to give information about the rhythms, music and cultural background of the dances. Additional energy is provided in all dance classes through the drum accompaniment by an experienced musician, Jarmo Hovi!
Dancers: Marjukka Huttunen, Heta Hämäläinen, Kaisa Jokiranta, Juuli Kolari, Anne Luoma, Kiia Naappi, Minna Nerg, Kirsi Salo, Tuuli Suominen
Artistic director and choreographer: Mariana Siljamäki / Music director: Jarmo Hovi / Musician: Keijo Koskenharju
When the dancers and musicians work together improvising, the solo drummer directs the dancers to change their movements giving rhythmic signs or signals. For successful co-operation between the musicians and dancers, it is important that the musicians know well the style and movement language of each dance. Correspondingly, the dancers must know the basic rhythm and variations of the music. In dances choreographed for performing, part of the movements often has a specific length and the movements do not always change at the signal played by the solo drummer like in improvised situations. This is true in Mami Wata’s performances, too.
We have founded an association to support our activities. The purpose of the Mami Wata Reg. Assn. is to maintain and develop the African dance and music culture. In addition, our aim is to promote multiculturalism and increase knowledge of Africa by means of dance and music. The association was founded in August 2005 and filed in the register of associations of the National Board of Patents and Registration in June 2006. Although our official activities as an association started only in 2006, we have worked since 1998 implementing the above described objectives. The ordinary members of the Mami Wata association, the dancers and the musicians form an actively performing group.
Occasionally we arrange open practices which the supporting members are welcome to attend and watch! You can participate our activities, such as organising of performances and workshops.
Our rules are currently under revision. At the moment, anyone accepting the purpose and rules of the association can join in. The actual joining is made with a written application to be approved by the board of management of the association and by paying the support membership fee EUR 20 or more, FI5710453000171263.
Revised rules will make it easier to join the association as a supporting member. In the future, a written application is not required but it is sufficient to be willing to support the purpose and activities of the association and to pay the membership fee. We will inform on this website when the revised rules will take effect.
Are you interested in the enthralling rhythms of drums and colourful dances? We offer performances of different durations to suit various events. Our experienced dancers always perform accompanied by professional musicians. When selecting the performance, we consider your desires and the type of the event. Our repertoire includes primarily West African dances open-mindedly combined with versatile elements of drama.
We arrange dance courses to persons of all ages and skill levels. Ask for individual classes and workshops! An afro dance lesson included in a bachelorette/bachelor party programme has been very popular! We also arrange teaching at schools. For more information, please contact us: info(a)mamiwata.fi or Tel. +358 40 5325416.
Our experienced musician, Jarmo, teaches djembé drumming both for elementary groups and for more advanced players. Jarmo has experience and skills in teaching school students as well. For more information, please contact jarmo.hovi(at)nic.fi.
English translation by Auli Karppinen