Obayana Ajanaku, who leads Indigenous Vibes, has traveled to Brazil, Russia, and Africa as a professional drummer. He teaches African drumming at Austin East High School in Knoxville, and he has introduced drumming in other Knox County schools.
On Saturday, Ajanaku’s Indigenous Vibes will be the featured entertainer at the Children’s Museum of Oak Ridge International Festival, a family-friendly gathering offering entertainment, crafts, and cuisines from cultures around the world. Music, dance, comedy, and martial arts will be on stage throughout the day, and children may make and take home a variety of international crafts.
“Our purpose is to reach out to the community, to talk about unity, diversity, and our outreach program with youth,” Ajanaku said, adding that at-risk youth benefit from learning drumming and participating in performances.
He said he has been drumming since he was six years old, encouraged by his mother. She was interested in the African culture and encouraged her children to learn African drumming and dance. He entertains and educates with the djembe drums, a set of drums that all work together, he explained.
“We will get innovative with the drums. We get a little modern,” Ajanaku added. Festival participants will be invited to participate in the Indigenous Vibes drum circle.
The Children’s Museum, at 461 West Outer Drive, will host the festival from 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Saturday, with doors opening at 9:30 a.m. The museum’s new mascot, Charlie the Curious Bear, will be on hand throughout the event to welcome visitors. Food vendors will offer international cuisine and cultural booths will represent many countries.
Sponsoring the live remote from 93.1 WNOX radio at the Children’s Museum will be Secret City Chrysler Dodge Jeep Ram. The Tennessee Arts Commission is also a sponsor of the event.
The International Festival entertainment schedule is:
- 10:05-10:20 a.m.—Japanese Harp and Guitar
- 10:30-10:45 a.m.—Kendo Modern Japanese Martial Arts
- 10:55-11:10—Meraki Greek Dancers
- 11:20-11:35—Argentine Tango Club
- 11:45-noon—Spice of India Dancers
- 12:15-1:10 p.m.—Indigenous Vibes Drum Circle
- 1:25-1:45 p.m.—National Martial Arts
- 2-2:30 p.m.—Scandinavian Dancers
- 2:35-2:50 p.m.—Lucia’s Arte y Pasion Flamenco Dancers
- 2:55-3:20 p.m.—Greg Carney Hip Hop Dance
- 3:30-3:50 p.m.—Einstein Simplified Comedy Improv
- 3:50-4 p.m.—Closing Remarks
Admission to the International Festival is $12 for adults, $11 for seniors, $10 for children 3-18, and $1 off each category for museum members. The event is free for children 2 and under.
For more information, call the Children’s Museum at (865) 482-1074, or see the Children’s Museum website at www.childrensmuseumofoakridge.org.
This press release was submitted by Kay Brookshire.
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