Taking a step with ‘Step Afrika!’
By Lindsey Voss, Published: Feb. 11, 2023 at 11:52 PM EST
ROCK ISLAND, Ill. (KWQC) – Watch and be amazed at a small part of the African American experience with a revived dance style.
Augustana College hosted ‘Step Afrika!’ and other step dance groups to celebrate African American culture.
“Step originated here in the US around the early 1900′s,” said Andrew Leon Sanchez, founder of Augustana’s Heavy Steppas group. “Originally this form of performance has many contexts to it by storytelling or protesting, even showing how someone is feeling.”
Sanchez founded his group Heavy Steppas to create an outlet for students. He mentioned how for many students this is a way to take a break from their daily class schedules. For the college it allows their campus to show diversity in their student body, and promote minorities.
“We want to continue being a resource in the Quad Cities — and I think with this event the local performers, Augustana’s step team, as well as ‘Step Afrika!’ will provide for the community education, energy and fun entertainment,” said the Chief Diversity Officer Monica Smith.
Offering this event during Black History Month is meant to serve as a way to honor those of African American descent, while also sharing the legacy of step to the next generation.
Augustana hopes to host events like this in the future.