Saturday, December 15, 2007 was the last Earth Drum Council-sponsored Drum and Dance Saturday in Cambridge. Drum and Dance Saturday had been going for ten years when Bob Walker asked us to take over organizing it early in 1991. First in the Old Cambridge Baptist Church, and then at the First Church Congregational in Harvard Square, drummers and dancers came together twice a month to ride the rhythms. During the 1990s, there were often 100 people there raising serious energy. Many folks who became well-known nationally as drummers and community facilitators began their journey at Drum and Dance Saturday in Cambridge.
In 1996, we were invited by Baba Olatunji to be a part of his "Drum, Dance, and Pray for Peace" event at the Washington Monument. We chartered a bus and brought a contingent of Drum and Dance folks to perform on stage with Baba. This was just one of the ways in which the energy of Drum and Dance was brought out into the larger world.
Our philosophy always was to give people the tools to go home and start a drum and dance circle where they lived. And over the years, many people did just that. Nassau-Queens Drum and Dance and Amherst Drum and Dance are just two of the many events that were originally inspired by Drum and Dance Saturday in Cambridge, along with drum circles in southern NH, central Mass, southern Mass, and more.
In recent years, most of the Drum and Dance Saturday regulars moved out of the Boston area, and/or changed their life circumstances such that they could no longer participate on a regular basis. Although we too live outside the city, we have been traveling into Cambridge, twice a month for many years and once a month for the last few years, to facilitate Drum and Dance. But because of changes in our lives (including jobs and our almost 13-year-old son), we have not been able to continue to participate in other drumming events in the city that would bring us into contact with new drummers and bring them into contact with Drum and Dance. As attendance at D&D has begun to wane, we have talked with various people about taking over organizing Drum and Dance Saturday, but it's become clearer that it is time to let it go.
We are proud of all the ways that our work has rippled out and touched so many people. We are excited to see what will come in to fill the space that is being created by letting go of this monthly event. We are deeply grateful to all of you who have helped set up and break down, helped with marketing, brought supplies and water, created altars, made banners, designed and distributed postcards, told your friends, got inspired and started your own drum circles, and most of all, all of you who have shown up over the years to drum and dance with us. The world is a different place because of what we have done together. Thank you all so much.
We will be continuing to organize AHO each summer, and look forward to drumming and dancing with you in that relaxed space. And we look forward to continuing to hear from you about how drumming has affected your life, and about things that you have done that may have been inspired by Drum and Dance Saturday.