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Interview with Ndeye Gueye

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Interview with Ndeye Gueye

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Interview with Ndeye Gueye
Additional title: Jerome Robbins Archive of the Recorded Moving Image original documentation
Gueye, Ndeye (Interviewee)
Gueye, Ndeye (Performer)
Adero, Malaika, 1957- (Interviewer)
Webb, Carolyn (Carolyn Jeannette) (Project director)
Bernadi, François (Videographer)
Mertz Gilmore Foundation (Presenter)
New York Public Library. Dance Division (Presenter)

African Dance Video Archive

Dates / Origin
Date Created: 2014-09-18
Library locations
Jerome Robbins Dance Division
Shelf locator: *MGZIDF 4097
Gueye, Ndeye
Women, Wolof
Wolof (African people)
Dance -- Senegal -- Dakar
Music -- Senegal -- Dakar
Filmed dance
Filmed performances
Statement of responsibility: conducted by Malaika Adero ; project director, Carolyn Webb.
Content: Widescreen.
Statement of responsibility: This interview was made possible by the cooperation of the Jerome Robbins Archive of the Recorded Moving Image, Jerome Robbins Dance Division, The New York Public Library.
Creation/production credits: Videographer, François Bernadi.
Performers: Interviewee, Ndeye Gueye ; interviewer, Malaika Adero.
Venue: Videotaped during an interview at the New York Public Library for the Performing Arts, New York. N.Y., as part of the Mertz Gilmore Foundation funded African Dance Interview Project 2014 September 18.
Funding: This recording was made possible by Mertz Gilmore Foundation.
Funding: African Dance Interview Project funded by the Mertz Gilmore Foundation.
Physical Description
Born digital
Extent: 1 video file (76 min.) : sound, color.
Ndeye Gueye (West African dancer, choreographer and teacher) discusses Sabar dance in the U.S. and traveling to the U.S. with Bougarabou [Ballet Bougarabou Dance Company] in 1993; being born in Dakar, Senegal; surprised to find a large Senegalese community already in New York City and despite the cold weather still feeling at home in Harlem; visiting Fareta Dance and Drum School; Gueye having no dancers or musicians in her family and her enthusiasm for dance was not encouraged; dancing at neighborhood tannabers and getting punished when she returned home; her father being an Imam; how most people in Senegal are of the Islamic religion and the predominant cultural tradition is Wolof; Mamou Faye, a local shoemaker who was also a well-connected actor and musician, arranged an audition for Gueye that resulted in her first professional work acting on a Senegalese Radio Talk Show; different Sabar dances and the order they are performed; identifying the drums of the Sabar orchestra including the n'der, m'bung m'bung, lambe, gorong and the tama; dances are for pleasure, and some rhythms are striclty spiritual; rhythms such as n'deup are not played in dance classes or most tannabers because they are a ritual healing ceremony; talking about the spiritual nature of the Baye Fall movement and how their entire lives including the dance, music, and colorful patchwork clothing, have powerful meaning in the devotion to God; coming to the U.S. and believing that artists must be ambassadors of their country, and how she is happy to share her culture; observing the classes of African dance masters teachers such as Marie Basse Willes, Lamine Thiam, Youssouf Koumbass, Amadou Bouly, and others; joining the faculty of the Fareta Dance and Drum School; teaching her students useful Wolof words and phrases that relate to dance; living in Oalkand, Calif., Chicago, Ill. and Buffalo, N.Y.; the popularity of African dance in Oakland's bay area; how you must love dance to become a good Sabar dancer; how the dancer must look and listen to connect with the drummer; the dancer leads the drums with his or her movement and feeling; the difference between a tannaber and a presentation by a professional dance company; a dancer needing confidence and freedom to dance; the difference between women and men dancers, their different steps and styles; working with Youssouf N'Dour and Wyclef Jean in the music video, How come?; founding her dance company, Chosaanu African Dance, in Oakland; the fashion and customs of dress for the newer versus older generation; the names of the clothing worn by women and the various layers; how in the past more fabrics and layers of material were used to cover the woman's legs and now they show more skin; demonstrating a dance step referred to as the five step; how dancers now mix steps from different rhythms as long as they fit inside the music; the difference in the performance experience in Senegalese culture as compared to U.S. culture; how audience participation with joining the performers onstage is acceptable and how monetary contributions placed onstage reflect the approval for an outstanding performance; how the U.S. has changed her and the experiences she has taken back to Senegal; how the Senegalese government looks at dance; during the 1960-1980 presidency of Leopold Sedar Senghor, artists' had more support from the government than today; not easy for dancers to earn a living in Africa or American; Sabar dance being popular in Japan and France (Paris); showing movements from the Nyari Gorong, demonstrating how the Sabar dancer can manipulate clothing to accentuate the dance; the taasou, a rhythmic spoken language, is similar to Rap music and can be about almost any subject; the meaning of her name; her work with drummer Mor Thiam and his work with Katherine Dunham; Mor Thiam's son Akon being a rap music artist in the U.S.; dancers having signature moves; where to look for good dance in Senegal; how professional dancers often have to supplement their artistic incomes with other jobs; what her family thinks about her traveling all over the world; and how the younger generation still has an interest in the African tradition, but things change and customs evolve over time.
Type of Resource
Moving image
RLIN/OCLC: 903163229
NYPL catalog ID (B-number): b20527067
Universal Unique Identifier (UUID): 93f1b370-9e8a-0132-dcb5-3c075448cc4b
Rights Statement
This item is protected by copyright and/or related rights. You are free to use this Item in any way that is permitted by the copyright and related rights legislation that applies to your use. For other uses you need to obtain permission from the rights-holder(s).

Item timeline of events

  • 2014: Created
  • 2024: Found by you!
  • 2025

MLA Format

Jerome Robbins Dance Division, The New York Public Library. "Interview with Ndeye Gueye" The New York Public Library Digital Collections. 2014.

Chicago/Turabian Format

Jerome Robbins Dance Division, The New York Public Library. "Interview with Ndeye Gueye" New York Public Library Digital Collections. Accessed June 18, 2024.

APA Format

Jerome Robbins Dance Division, The New York Public Library. (2014). Interview with Ndeye Gueye Retrieved from

Wikipedia Citation

<ref name=NYPL>{{cite web | url= | title= (moving image) Interview with Ndeye Gueye, (2014)|author=Digital Collections, The New York Public Library |accessdate=June 18, 2024 |publisher=The New York Public Library, Astor, Lenox, and Tilden Foundations}}</ref>

Interview with Ndeye Gueye