University of Pittsburgh
December 2, 2008

Pitt's Shona Sharif African Dance and Drum Ensemble Presents Nativity: A Christmas Gift


Sharon Blake


Cell: 412-277-6926

PITTSBURGH-The Shona Sharif African Dance and Drum Ensemble, part of Pitt's Department of Africana Studies, will present its unique musical production of "Nativity: A Christmas Gift" on weekends only, from Dec. 5 to Dec. 21 in the Seventh-Floor Auditorium of Alumni Hall, 4227 Fifth Ave., Oakland.

Inspired by Langston Hughes' "Black Nativity," the show explores the Christmas season through traditional West African dance and 20th century gospel music. Under the direction of artistic director Oronde Sharif, a lecturer in Africana Studies, and musical director Jerome Kirkland, the cast features the voices of some of the region's finest gospel performers.

"Nativity: A Christmas Gift" will be performed at 8 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays and 5 p.m. Sundays. There will be one school matinee at 10 a.m. Dec. 12. Tickets are $20 general admission and $10 for senior citizens, students, and children. They can be reserved by calling 412-648-2276 or purchased at the door.