Tag Archives: Northwest Tap Connection

PHOTO ESSAY: Rediscovering the Central District With Wa Na Wari’s ‘Walk the Block’

by Susan Fried


Over seven hundred people bought tickets for Wa Na Wari’s inaugural “Walk the Block fundraising event on Saturday, Oct. 16. Attendees were treated to a feast of visual art, music, dance, food, and drinks. 

Upon arriving at the event, participants were given maps, chose custom racing bibs with a variety of words and slogans, and then set off on a .08 mile walk through the Central District neighborhood. During “Walk the Block,” they could find work by artists Inye Wokoma, Chloe King, and Kimisha Turner. There were also video pieces by Martine Syms, Sable Elyse Smith, and the Shelf Life Community Story Project, as well as live music by the Gary Hammon Band. Three blocks away, in front of the Garfield Community Center, there were dance performances by Northwest Tap Connection and the Bring Us Collective, with jazz trumpeter Owuor Arunga playing in between performances. There were 15 stops along the way.

Elisheba Johnson, co-founder of Wa Na Wari, told the Emerald that the event was “a total success.” 

Continue reading PHOTO ESSAY: Rediscovering the Central District With Wa Na Wari’s ‘Walk the Block’

Verbal Oasis Spoken Word Festival Offers Creativity and Celebration for All Ages

by Chamidae Ford


September 3 marks the beginning of the first annual Verbal Oasis Spoken Word Festival. The four-day event represents a multigenerational depiction of art — from poetry and dancing to music and visual art. The festival allows attendees space to go beyond observing by providing workshops for them to engage. 

The free event, located at the Rainier Beach Community Center’s outdoor pavilion, is being hosted by Monique Franklin (Verbal Oasis). The festival is supported by the Seattle Park District and Created Commons, a program of the Office of Arts & Culture Seattle. 

“I’ve been performing in Seattle for over 15 years now, but in the process of being a performance artist, I’ve also been producing shows for that length of time. And I produce shows from children all the way up through adults with a specific focus on bringing together a multi-gender generational community of Black artists,” Franklin said. “So in some ways, you could say that this festival is about 15 years in the making.”

Continue reading Verbal Oasis Spoken Word Festival Offers Creativity and Celebration for All Ages

The Morning Update Show — 8/9/21

The Morning Update Show — hosted by Trae Holiday and The Big O (Omari Salisbury) — is the only weekday news and information livestream that delivers culturally relevant content to the Pacific Northwest’s urban audience. Omari and Trae analyze the day’s local and national headlines as well as melanin magic in our community. Watch live every weekday at 11 a.m. on any of the following channels, hosted by Converge Media: YouTube, Twitch, Facebook, Periscope, and whereweconverge.com.

We also post the Morning Update Show here on the Emerald each day after it airs, so you can catch up any time of day while you peruse our latest posts.

Morning Update Show — Monday, August 9

Live From the Liberty Bank Building | Where Are the Good-Paying Jobs for Our People in the Trades? | LIVE — Jeret Garcia of Valley Electric | LIVE — Sean Bagsby of IBEW Local 46 | LIVE — Patrick McGlothlin of Lydig Construction | A Look Back at NW Tap Connection at the Paramount

Continue reading The Morning Update Show — 8/9/21

The Morning Update Show — 8/6/21

The Morning Update Show — hosted by Trae Holiday and The Big O (Omari Salisbury) — is the only weekday news and information livestream that delivers culturally relevant content to the Pacific Northwest’s urban audience. Omari and Trae analyze the day’s local and national headlines as well as melanin magic in our community. Watch live every weekday at 11 a.m. on any of the following channels, hosted by Converge Media: YouTube, Twitch, Facebook, Periscope, and whereweconverge.com.

We also post the Morning Update Show here on the Emerald each day after it airs, so you can catch up any time of day while you peruse our latest posts.

Morning Update Show — Friday, August 6

LIVE — Rell Be Free | LIVE — NW Tap Connection | LIVE — Ricardo Frazer | LIVE — Ike Everard | LIVE — Councilmember Larry Gossett | LIVE — Dr. Chemene Crawford | #FeelGoodFriday

Continue reading The Morning Update Show — 8/6/21

PHOTO ESSAY: Northwest Tap Connection’s Third Annual Gullah Geechee Festival

by Susan Fried


Melba Ayco, the founder and artistic director of Northwest Tap Connection is a Gullah Geechee and Creole storyteller and last Friday and Saturday, July 16 and 17, Northwest Tap celebrated their third annual Seattle Gullah Geechee Festival. Ms. Melba told stories about Gullah Geechee traditions around food, culture, and heritage. She talked about the importance of family and the practice of lifting the baby up during a Gullah christening, the significance of the conch shell in Gullah spirituality, and the history behind the “Emancipation” maypole. In-between the stories, Northwest Tap dancers and instructors performed numerous dances inspired by Gullah Geechee heritage.

Continue reading PHOTO ESSAY: Northwest Tap Connection’s Third Annual Gullah Geechee Festival

PHOTO ESSAY: First Weekend of ‘Reopening’ in South Seattle

by Susan Fried


The Fourth of July weekend was also the first official weekend that King County dropped all COVID-19 restrictions, and many people in South Seattle were excited to finally go to their favorite places, sit down across from friends and family, and take their masks off (as long as they’d been vaccinated). 

Individual businesses could ask customers to wear masks, but many allowed those who had been vaccinated to go mask free, trusting them to be honest about whether they’d been vaccinated or not. Some businesses chose to ask patrons to continue wearing masks while others opted to not fully open.

For many South End residents, things almost felt like they were back to a pre-pandemic normal.  

Continue reading PHOTO ESSAY: First Weekend of ‘Reopening’ in South Seattle

The Morning Update Show — 5/24/21

The Morning Update Show — hosted by Trae Holiday and The Big O (Omari Salisbury) — is the only weekday news and information livestream that delivers culturally relevant content to the Pacific Northwest’s urban audience. Omari and Trae analyze the day’s local and national headlines as well as melanin magic in our community. Watch live every weekday at 11 a.m. on any of the following channels, hosted by Converge Media: YouTube, Twitch, Facebook, Periscope, and whereweconverge.com.

We also post the Morning Update Show here on the Emerald each day after it airs, so you can catch up any time of day while you peruse our latest posts.

Morning Update Show — Monday, May 24

SPD Cop on CBS Has a History of Violence | More Bodycam Footage From Louisiana State Police | NAACP Says “Say their name” | Mike Davis “Claps Back” | Northwest Tap Connection

Continue reading The Morning Update Show — 5/24/21

Rising Star Estrella Gonzales-Sanders Featured in New Debbie Allen Netflix Documentary

by Jasmine M. Pulido

Estrella Gonzales-Sanders’ parents may have been prophetic when they named her Estrella, the Spanish word for “star.” The young Renton resident has already danced in front of notable stars like Beyoncé, Jay-Z, Barry Gordy, and Stevie Wonder, to name a few. Now, she has landed a small feature in Debbie Allen’s newly released Netflix documentary, Dance Dreams: Hot Chocolate Nutcracker. And at age 12, Estrella’s own rise to stardom has only just begun.

Continue reading Rising Star Estrella Gonzales-Sanders Featured in New Debbie Allen Netflix Documentary

Northwest Tap Connection Raising $75,000 to Survive the COVID-19 Pandemic

by Shann Thomas


Outside of the Northwest Tap Connection studio a vibrant mural by Lawrence Pitre stands tall with an Alice Walker quote smack in the center: “Furious Times Require Furious Dancing.”

For now, however, dancing inside of Northwest Tap has come to a screeching halt. Like many small businesses, the impact of COVID 19 has temporarily shut the doors of Northwest Tap. Continue reading Northwest Tap Connection Raising $75,000 to Survive the COVID-19 Pandemic

Othello Block Party’s Second Volume Drops July 27

by Emerald Staff

The Othello Block Party is back with a second volume of music, dance, and arts on Martin Luther King Jr. Way July 27. And this time with an expansive lineup of Seattle artists bringing songs, dance, and poetry to the of 42nd Avenue near Othello Street.

Continue reading Othello Block Party’s Second Volume Drops July 27