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Name: Hamzat Amoussa Koriko

Art Form: Folk Arts

Grade Level Preference:  8-12

Geographic Availability: Throughout North Dakota

Fee per-day: Negotiable

Email: amoussak@gmail.com; hamzat@africanartsarena.org

Phone Number: (701)739-4310

Website: www.africanartsarena.org


Dr. Koriko Hamzat is the Director of the African Arts Arena, based in Grand Forks, ND, where he uses performing and visual to engage communities on challenges and opportunities of immigration. A trained actor and storyteller, Hamzat is a multidisciplinary art professional who worked with theater institutions in West Africa, France, Italy, and the US. He was a featured author at the 42nd Annual UND Writers Conference at the University of North Dakota in 2011. His works include The Case of the Missing Girl (Lambert Academic Publishing); L’ombre de nuit (Harmattan, 2012) Quand L’oiseau S’envole (Harmattan, 2007), and co-authored the article The Complicated Identity Negotiation of Women in Kangni Alemdjrodo’s Chemin de Croix and Gustave Akakpo’s Catharsis (IJFS, 2016). His translation of Quand L’oiseau S’envole (When the bird takes flight) was invited to the Kennedy Center (KCACTF) in 2010. Hamzat teaches Research Scholars: The Immigrants Experience in North America at the University of North Dakota in the Honors Program Department since his return from the Peace Corps in 2018. His latest storytelling work, The Immigrant In Your Backyard, has been performed around North Dakota.


Students learn better when they see someone do it, and they try it. This is the approach that I refer to as "I do, we do; and you do". It is a model that I learned from a friend during my Peace Corps service. I believe that every student knows something, has the potential for something and when given a chance and with a little patience, these qualities and skills can be nurtured. I believe most learning activities and classrooms interactions should draw on what students are familiar with. I also believe that by using the arts as a tool, we encourage critical thinking that allows students to turn the familiar into something strange, and that what is strange into something familiar.


Residency Title:  The Craft of Storytelling

  • Grades 8-12

Number of Sessions:  10 sessions; 50 minutes per session.

Description:  Students will explore the world around them through storytelling. This new form of telling story combines music, dance, and song, and allows students to explore their creative and imaginative skills while learning more about the on-going globalizing world they live in.  Students will learn about new immigrants' cultures by integrating basic theater and acting skills, Togolese dance movement and musical instruments into their stories. Dr. Hamzat Koriko, a published playwright, percussionist, dancer, and storyteller will lead the residency in collaboration with the school representative, if needed.


Each session will follow the same format:

Warm-up: (5 minutes)

we do some stretching and body movements based on Jacques Lecoq "Corps poetique" where participants turn their body into poetic movements.

Activities-Practices (40 minutes)

I present the activities (working on an existing story)

We do the activities together

Students work in group on the activities and practices.

Cool down- (5 minutes)

We come together as group to reflect on what we talked about and what we learn from the session.


Name: Shalini Agarwal

Grade Level Preference: 5-8

Geographic Availability: North Dakota, Minnesota

Fee per-day: $300 per day/Negotiable

 Email: shalinidinkar@gmail.com

Phone Number: 701-404-3017


 Shalini Agarwal is a visual artist working in Fargo, ND. She grew up In India and learned and gained experience from master artists in traditional folk arts. She is also an accomplished calligrapher. She has experience teaching art to young students and introducing them to art forms they might not be familiar with. She has helped students to create and learn basic skills in visual arts and helped them develop penmanship through calligraphy.


I like to use my art to provide an opportunity to students to understand and learn from new ideas, cultures and skills. I provide students with history of art form and its community, knowledge of materials and basic skills and then help students use the skills learned to express their own ideas and create art works. I strive to create a fun and open learning environment for my students.


Residency Title: Warli Art (a traditional folk art from India)

Grade Level: For students Grades 5-8

Number of Sessions: 5, 50-minutes sessions


Warli is a traditional folk visual art practiced since centuries in Western India. In this program, through examples of Warli art, students will learn about traditional arts and its ties to community life. They will develop basic skills in Warli art and create their own Warli artwork.

The objective of this program is to help students gain skills in a new art form and allow an opportunity to appreciate diversity in culture.


The students start out with learning about Folk art and communities. We talk about folk arts of German-Americans or Norwegian-Americans.

We learn about Warli people and their art. 

Students then learn basic techniques, materials, traditional motifs of Warli art.

We will end the program with students identifying a theme and then creating their own artwork on the selected theme

A public display of artworks can be planned (optional additional session)


Name: Debi Rogers
Grade Level Preference: all ages
Geographic Availability: North Dakota, South Dakota, Minnesota
Fee per-day: Negotiable
Email: debirogers3@gmail.com
Phone Number: 701-226-6890
Web site: http://debirogerscelticmusicarts.squarespace.com


A teller of tales, harper, Gaelic singer, and céilí dancer of Scots/Irish (Celtic) ancestry, Debi’s Rogers’ earliest memory as a wee child was practicing flying and harping in her basement to become an Irish fairy. One of a handful of musicians who play the Gaelic wire-strung harp she’s at home in any situation - from concert hall to school, from outdoor festival to senior center, from theatrical stage to Irish pub. Through travels to Ireland and Scotland, participating in the Summer School of Irish Harp (Scoil na gCláirseach) and from native speakers Debi has learned a vast repertoire of songs, dances, tales and tunes which she incorporates into her residencies and performances. As a K-12 certified choral and theater educator Debi was awarded a Fulbright to study in Japan, sang a soprano solo onstage at Carnegie Hall, and was a featured solo artist on the Prairie Public Television series, "North Dakota Musicians." She also served as an artistic ambassador for North Dakota in Iceland through an artists exchange program of the North Dakota Council on the Arts.


Debi utilizes the power of dramatic art to kindle the imagination and breathe life into music, stories and folktales. Her extensive background in education, Traditional Arts, Multiple Intelligences, travel, and performance are infused into all residencies. “We need to work together as cultural ambassadors to build respect, curiosity and self-esteem in today’s changing world”.


Residency Title: Celtic (KEL-tic) Caravan (multi-disciplinary)

Grade Level: all ages

Number of Sessions: Flexible. One day to two week residencies available. Please contact me for specific lesson plans and objectives.


Debi’s residency can incorporate any of the following aspects of Celtic culture: traditional Irish music (harp, whistle, guitar and song), dance (céilí), drama, folktales, and visual arts (ogham, Brigid cross, clan shield, Book of Kells). Her performance pieces demonstrate how the Celts managed to integrate arts and the appreciation of it into all aspects of life. Students experience the art and culture of the Celtic lands.This student-centered residency is conducted in a lively, engaging manner that entertains and enriches school curriculum.

A specific description of what students will do:

Students will sing songs from Scotland, Ireland and the Isle of Man in English, Irish and Manx; play at least one song on tin whistle; dance “The Waves of Tory”, an authentic Irish dance; through creative dramatics act “The Children of Lir", an ancient Irish story; experience many Celtic stories and write their own “otherworld” story; learn about the history, geography and language of the 7 Celtic nations; perform an Irish blessing using American Sign Language; listen to, learn of and later play a authentic Irish harp; discover, report and take pride their personal heritage; construct a Brigid Cross, Ogham marker, or clan shield. Longer residencies culminate in public performance.


Name: The Cultural Kaleidoscope
Grade Level Preference: K – 12th
Geographic Availability: Statewide
Fee per-day: Negotiable
Email: margietritt@kc.rr.comPhone Number: 816-363-6547
Web site: www.culturalkaleidoscope.org


Since 1991, The Cultural Kaleidoscope has been bringing the world’s cultures to classrooms throughout the Midwest.  Our teaching-artists are full-time professionals.  We currently have programs about Russia and Ukraine.  Our presenters and content continuously enjoy rave reviews from educators, parents and students alike.


Culture matters!  Educators are preparing students to enter a world that is more interconnected and diverse than ever before.  Their ability to thrive will depend on many things, not the least of which is their active engagement in opportunities to learn about and appreciate the richness of other cultures through hands-on learning.  Our programs help students understand the visual arts and music in relation to history and culture.


Residency Title: Cultural Kaleidoscope Residency

Grade Level: K-12

Number of Sessions:  5 days


Exposing students to other cultures in ways that create lasting impressions and understandings has never been more important. The world they are entering is interconnected and diverse. Each Cultural Kaleidoscope residency introduces students to the respective culture through authentic music and dance, history, geography, language, art and cultural traditions. The residency culminates with a never-to-be-forgotten student performance for the community.  Educators can expect their students to be fully engaged and active participants. Students will be excited to learn through songs, unique music instruments and ethnic dances.  They will be full of questions and gain insight into a culture from the other side of the world. Each Cultural Kaleidoscope residency is lead by a teaching-artist from the specific country who is a professional in the arts.  Our complementary “Teaching Resource Guides” enhance the educational experience. The easy to use lessons help teachers prepare their students for the Kaleidoscope experience. The program-specific teaching guides can be reviewed on our website.

Cultural Kaleidoscope residencies include:

  • Ukrainian Kaleidoscope
  • Russian Kaleidoscope

North Dakota Council on the Arts

We strengthen the creative capacity of North Dakota for all who live or visit here: honoring our cultural traditions, empowering excellence and innovation, inspiring arts and culture opportunities for all.