Panel: Why Bomba Matters

The panel is speaking about their experiences and how Bomba has influenced their lives. Each of these women are sharing pieces of themselves today, and that’s not an easy thing to do. Hearing their stories is deeply moving and they communicate how bomba is more than just a fun hobby. Music and dance create strength and confidence to move through the difficulties life presents.

It’s one thing to say we need to break down borders and welcome all people, but another to actually do it. Women of color sharing a space to speak and express themselves is a political action in this world. Coming together as a community to share joy and connect to their culture is taking action. Social change and human connection are what Bomba is bringing to El Centro today.

Group 8: Kira Smith

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…I’m Late to the Dance Party

I loved the Jaracho and Afro-Puerto Rican bomba dancing workshop. I almost didn’t participate. But then the drums began. And everyone began to move. As the people moved I had to move with them.

I’m not a dancer. I never learned to move along with the rhythm of the music, and I never usually step out to dance and NEVER in public. Yet here I am at El Centro, packed in with strangers and having the time of my life.

There’s catharsis in movement. So often women are taught to give up their space, especially women of color. In this movement, in this dance, we take back that space and share it among each other. Thank you to all the women who led this workshop, who carried such passion and positivity in teaching us.

Group 8: Kira Smith