Marcus Performing Arts Center
Press Release

Ko-Thi Dance Company Returns to Milwaukee Stage with Vibrations Rhythmic Motion Concert

Ko-Thi's Adult Company and Ton Ko-Thi Children's Performing Ensemble

By - Jan 19th, 2017 11:21 am
Ko-Thi Dance Company Returns to Milwaukee Stage with Vibrations Rhythmic Motion Concert

Ko-Thi Dance Company Returns to Milwaukee Stage with Vibrations Rhythmic Motion Concert

Milwaukee, WI (January 19, 2017) – Ko-Thi Dance Company will debut VIBRATIONS: Rhythmic Motion in Wilson Theater at Vogel Hall on February 2-3, 2017.  Ko-Thi’s much anticipated return to the stage in Milwaukee will feature Ko-Thi’s Adult Company and Ton Ko-Thi Children’s Performing Ensemble, a post-performance talk back with the Company and mini archival exhibit.  Founded by Ferne Yangyeitie Caulker in 1969, Ko-Thi Dance Company celebrates its 5th generation of Ko-Thi Dance Company.

VIBRATIONS Rhythmic Motion is a dynamic representation in dance, drumming, and theater reflecting traditional African and Contemporary performance art.  Using specific dance and musical genres, this concert blends a visual and audible palette into a refreshingly seamless offering that insights rhythmic pulses and body movement into a wild, hypnotic new look at African culture. This concert features collaborative works and staging by DeMar Walker, Sonya Thompson, Ferne Caulker, Kumasi Allen, and Youssouf Koumbassa. “To connect and move African dance and music from obscurity to the light, to expose children and all audiences to the beauty and significance of the African aesthetic to the world has been my life path” says Founder and Artistic Director Ferne Caulker

Ko-Thi Dance Company Board Chair Sheree Dallas adds, “We congratulate Ko-Thi Dance Company and Black Arts MKE’s support on the presentation of 2017 VIBRATIONS Rhythmic Motions concert performance. We salute and celebrate Ferne Yangyeitie Caulker and the entire Company as they celebrate 48 years of excellence in teaching and presenting African and Caribbean dance and music to our community, and most importantly hundreds of our children.” Ko-Thi Dance Company started its Ton Ko-Thi Children’s Performing Ensemble in 1983 to help youth social emotional healing and learning.  Many of these talented youth, ages 5 to 18, advance to the adult dance company or drumming ensemble while pursuing undergraduate and graduate academic programs, or other related professional careers.

“Ko-Thi Dance Company’s triumphant return to the Milwaukee stage after 9 years of rebuilding the Company is what our mission is all about” says Barbara Wanzo, Black Arts MKE Executive Director.  “We’re helping to build strong African American arts organizations and showcase tremendous artist leadership and local talent in our community” adds Wanzo. VIBRATIONS is supported by Bader Philanthropies, a founding supporter of Black Arts MKE (formerly Black Arts Think Tank.)

VIBRATIONS Rhythmic Motion will be an evening of fun, education and culture for the whole family.  Two evening performances of VIBRATIONS premier February 2 and 3rd, Thursday and Friday. Tickets are now on sale and can be purchased in person at the Marcus Center Box Office at 929 North Water St, by phone at 414-273-7206 or online at or   Groups of 10 or more should call Group Sales at 414-273-7121, x210 or x213.  For more information, visit

Celebrating its historic 50th Anniversary in 2019, Ko-Thi is the third oldest African Dance Company in America.  Founded in Milwaukee in 1969, Ko-Thi Dance Company offers its audiences and students over 45 years of research, training, and expertise.  The Company is Wisconsin’s national and international touring gem.  Ko-Thi has been presenting DRUMTALK dance and music performing arts education in schools since 1972, and the Ton Ko-Thi Children’s Performing Ensemble after school program in the community since 1983.  Students learn about the history, language, dance and drumming of the continent of Africa and the Diaspora.  Ko-Thi Dance Company is a founding member of Black Arts MKE (formerly Black Arts Think Tank).

Our mission is to continue building strong, sustainable African American arts organizations in Milwaukee that preserve and promote the history and culture of the African diaspora and inspire creativity in future generations. We’re committed to exposing diverse audiences to cultural programming.  We engage hundreds of urban, underserved and under-resourced children, families, and audiences through educational outreach, public performances, special events and community collaborative partnerships.  Black Arts MKE is a proud UPAF Affiliate and Resident Group at the Marcus Center for the Performing Arts.  Black Arts MKE is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit corporation.

Established in 1969, the Marcus Center for the Performing Arts is the premier performing arts community gathering space in Southeastern Wisconsin. As the Marcus Center moves into its 48th year, it continues to build bridges between diverse members of our community through high-quality arts entertainment in the region and the state. The touring Broadway series, sponsored by Associated Bank, is recognized as bringing the best of Broadway entertainment to Milwaukee for the past 20 years and provides opportunities to educate, entertain and engage audiences. The Marcus Center is also the home to the Milwaukee Symphony, Milwaukee Ballet, Florentine Opera, First Stage plus a variety of other important community and family events throughout the year. For more information about events visit the Marcus Center website at  The Marcus Center is a private non-profit 501(c) 3 corporation and is a dedicated veterans memorial in Milwaukee.

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