The Liberian Women's Chorus for Change in concert. Painted Bride Theater, Philadelphia, June 2014. Photo by Anna Mulé.
The Liberian Women's Chorus for Change, 2013. Clockwise, from upper left: Fatu Gayflor, Marie Nyenabo, Zaye Tete and Tokay Tomah. Photo by Anna Mulé.
The Liberian Women's Chorus for Change in concert at the Cedar Works, West Philadelphia, 2013. Photo by Toni Shapiro-Phim.
Philadelphia Folklore Project and the Liberian Women's Chorus for Change present a discussion with Dr. Cynthia Cohen, director of Brandeis University's Program in Peacebuilding and the Arts, on the place of traditional and folk arts practice in reconciliation, anti-violence, and peacebuilding work in Philadelphia and beyond. Preceding the discussion will be a screening of the documentary Acting Together on the World Stage.
Led by 2014 Pew Fellow Fatu Gayflor, the Liberian Women's Chorus for Change addresses urgent issues of violence against women in Philadelphia's growing Liberian community. The members of the chorus will adapt existing folk songs and write new ones in traditional styles, in the hopes of subverting historical narratives in which women are blamed, stigmatized, or victimized. The Chorus' goals are to foster conversation through song, generate collective strength to act, and offer options and resources for change. The Philadelphia Folklore Project will present the Chorus in local Liberian neighborhoods as well as in concerts at World Cafe Live and other venues. The Philadelphia Folklore Project received Center funding for this project in 2014, as well as a 2013 Discovery Grant to explore the impact of the Chorus' work.