Apollo Education - Professional Learning

Music for Liberation

Apollo_Marquee_1 Courtesy of Sanden Wolff Productions EDIT

Teaching and Learning with the Apollo

Celebrating Apollo’s Africa Now Festival, Apollo Education presents two professional learning workshops that are designed specifically for educators and offer an interactive dive into Pan-Africanism, the political and social climate of the 1960s, and the creative and activist efforts of the late South African singer-songwriter and civil rights activist Miriam Makeba.

This workshop will explore how Miriam Makeba’s anti-apartheid activism motivated her music and interviews during her lifetime while connecting with primary source documents, such as song lyrics, photographs, and timelines, to inspire the creation of their own song hooks, anthems, and messages for liberation. Participants will study numerous examples of Makeba’s activism such as songs “West Wind Unification” and “Nkosi Sikelel’ iAfrika (African National Anthem),” amongst others, to consider how Makeba’s deep investment into the freedom for Black South Africans created a large volume of inspiring, empowering, and society-changing work.  From each workshop, educators will gather several effective teaching strategies to engage their students with civic engagement, ethics, human rights, and the performing arts.

All educators are welcome, workshop is most appropriate for Upper Elementary, MS, and HS educators.

One and a half hours of New York State CTLE credit will be available for attendance.

Questions? Please email [email protected].

Registration Information

Register Here

SPECIAL OFFER: Two workshops for $15

The Apollo is offering a special offer you don’t want to miss. This Teaching and Learning with the Apollo series also includes Rediscovering Pan-Africanism and Miriam Makeba on March 17th. 


Series Schedule

Rediscovering Pan-Africanism and Miriam Makeba (March 17, 2022)
Music for Liberation (March 22, 2022)

Workshop Facilitators

Dr. Abimbola Cole Kai-Lewis

Dr. Abimbola Cole Kai-Lewis

Dr. Abimbola Cole Kai-Lewis is an educator and ethnomusicologist. A former New York City Teaching Fellow with experience working in both charter and public school settings, Kai-Lewis currently teaches at Park Place Community Middle School. She also has served on citywide advisory teams and online learning committees for the New York City Department of Education (NYCDOE). Kai-Lewis completed her doctoral studies at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA), where her dissertation investigated the music of South African hip-hop collective Cashless Society. She is presently conducting collaborative research with emcee Chosan that explores Sierra Leonean diaspora communities and identity.

Alvin Keith

Alvin Keith

Alvin Keith has been a proud member of the Apollo Education Department as a Master Teaching Artist for more than 10 years and has played memorable roles on Broadway, Off-Broadway, and at the Apollo, amongst many of the country’s other leading theaters. He was last on stage in Sweat at Huntington Theater in Boston and Off-Broadway in Novenas for a Lost Hospital. At the Apollo he was in March On! and Unspeakable: Inspired by the Life of Richard Pryor. He was featured in the world premiere of Ellen McLaughlin’s The Orestia (Michael Khan, dir.) at Washington DC’s Shakespeare Theatre and was also a member of The Public Theater’s Shakespeare Lab (Barry Edelstein, dir.). His favorite stage roles have been August Wilson’s Boy Willie and Levee, Tony Kushner’s Belize, John Guare’s Jacques Cornet, and Shakespeare’s King Oberon.

Keith also enjoys acting on camera. His screen credits include Blue Bloods, Fosse/Verdon, The Blacklist, Mr. Robot, and Amazon’s Modern Love. He was most recently seen in the Netflix film Don’t Look Up. Keith is a proud graduate of Morehouse College and has an MFA in