DCS hosting “Cultural Bridge” June 12 – community encouraged to attend

On Wednesday, June 12, from 4-8 p.m., DCS’s Joe Bena Auditorium and high school cafeteria will be the sites of a free community event, “Cultural Bridge: Connecting the Mohawk Valley with the Alay Valley, Republic of Kyrgyzstan,” that will feature well-known area musicians, artists and visitors from Kyrgyzstan.  

The public is encouraged to attend the exciting presentation of music, dance and local crafts highlighting the cultural heritage of the Mohawk and Schoharie valleys. The event will feature the following.

In Joe Bena Auditorium:

  • 4 p.m.: Introduction & welcome by Ellen McHale and Nazgul from Youth of Osh
  • 4:40 p.m.: Youth of Osh group dance demonstration, film of Kyrgystan, talk about cultural heritage
  • 5:20 p.m.: Film showing about exchange program
  • 5:30: Singer/songwriter/multi-instrumentalist Jess Jones
  • 6 p.m.:  Musician, storyteller and educator Reggie Harris
  • 6:30 p.m.: Zach McKeeby and Lorraine Hu dance demo & lessons
  • 7 p.m.: Band leader, musician and composer Alex Torres of Amsterdam

In the high school cafeteria. from 4-6 p.m. (and possibly later, depending upon volume):

  • Local textile/felted bowls artist Katherine Fortman
  • Local textile/needle felting artist Lois Goblet
  • Local textile/hooked rugs artist Katie O’Brien
  • Timber frame building demonstration by Scott Hadam
  • Basket-making demonstration by artist Beverly Cornelius

Throughout the event:

  • Food by the Buena Comida Food Truck

“Cultural Bridge” is being presented through an ongoing exchange program and partnership of New York Folklore, the Schoharie River Center, Duanesburg Central School District, and Youth of Osh of the Republic of Kyrgyzstan.

Duanesburg High School is a host of “Communities Connecting Heritage,” an exchange program that is sponsored by the U.S. Department of State, funded by the U.S. government and administered by World Learning. DCS senior Sal Gallo will travel to Kyrgyzstan this summer with a group of U.S. students. 

According to New York Folklore, “Since February, the project has challenged young people ages 16-23 from the local area and the Republic of Kyrgyzstan to discover Kyrgyz and American cultural heritage through learning about oral history and cultural heritage documentation and by contributing to preservation efforts.

“During their visit to the region June 2-13, Kyrgyz and U.S. participants will produce media portraits about the region’s cultural heritage and will install a timber-framed kiosk at the non-profit Country Classrooms in Middleburgh. Similarly, in July 2019, a group of area students will travel to the Republic of Kyrgyzstan to document Kyrgyz cultural heritage and to undertake a service project promoting heritage tourism.”

For more information, visit https://nyfolklore.org/events-and-exhibitions/

New York Folklore is a statewide, non-profit cultural advocacy organization headquartered in Schenectady. For more information, visit their website or call (518) 346-7008.