Zuzu African Acrobats Entertain BW Audience


Caitlin Sukalac

Acrobats from the Zuzu African Acrobat Troupe perform their final trick.

Cailtin Sukalac, Feature Editor

Baldwin Wallace University Academic and Cultural Event World Music Series brought The Zuzu African Acrobats to BW.  Traveling from the warm weather of Kenya, they arrived in the snow-covered town of Berea, Ohio to execute traditional Kenyan acrobatics for a student audience. These agile acrobats performed in celebration of Black History Month.
The SAC atmosphere was highly energized and the audience was composed of people of all ages. The Zuzu African Acrobats exhibited a high level of skill and talent, while incorporating participation from the audience.
The opening act showcased the performers building a pyramid through a choreographed routine set to high energy beats that had the performers jumping and catching each other.
The audience was challenged to participate in a game of limbo. One of the acrobats, showed his amazing flexibility through his ability to limbo at an unbelievably low level.
Another daring acrobat was able to stack chairs at various angles and balance on them, leaving the audience breathless.  The acrobats put a twist on juggling, by throwing hats and placing them on their heads in the midst of juggling them.
Balancing did not seem to be an issue as one acrobat walked around with a stick in his mouth, adding bottles and balls onto the stick.
After completing the jump rope portion of their routine, they invited volunteers from the audience to join them on stage. The audience was so impressed with the tumbling, contortions, juggling and chair balancing, that they requested an encore and the performers complied.
“It was cool to see a totally different culture come and incorporate themselves into the BW community. It made me really excited for my trip back to Africa in May!” Mary McHale, sophomore said.
“I saw a poster advertising them, and I was excited to go. Their performance was spectacular and I really enjoyed it. I was not sure what to expect, but they did not disappoint,” freshman, Jackie Saker, explained.
“Their performance was so good. I was so entertained through the whole thing. They really kept me interested, and I liked how they incorporated the audience. I’m still trying to figure out how they were able to perform some of those stunts. I would really like to see them again,” freshman, Patrick Barrett, said.
The Zuzu African Acrobats are a traveling acrobatic act from Mombasa, Kenya. Currently, they have been traveling for a month. They have been featured on America’s Got Talent, as well as The Late Night Show with David Letterman. They have also had the opportunity to perform at multiple Super Bowls.
The World Music Series at BW offers events throughout the year that are free to BW students and to the community. They sponsor artists from around the world in an effort to promote the diversity of cultures, music, and customs.
The next World Music Series event will take place April 1, 2015, in the Gamble Auditorium at 8 pm. BW will be hosting Runda, a duo presenting different instruments while incorporating traditional and contemporary contexts.
For more information on the World Music Series or other events, feel free to contact ACES at (440) 826-2157.