The Salinans are a Native people that lived in what is now the Central Coast of California, in the Salinas Valley.  The Salinan language is one of the oldest in California.  Said to have gone extinct by the Census of 1930, the Salinan peoples survived and currently exist in several…
The Selma Arts Foundation aims to enrich the lives of all people in the southern part of Fresno County by promoting and celebrating the arts in all forms. In 2015, a grant from ACTA’s Living Cultures Grants Program will support the Selma Arts Foundation’s Bhangra…
Chamorro Hands in Education Links Unity (CHE’LU) is dedicated to San Diego’s Chamorro community by strengthening their native language, culture, and health through education and cultural arts programs.  The Chamorro people are the indigenous peoples of the Mariana Islands, including Guam.  Today, Chamorros are the most…
As a grantee of ACTA’s Living Cultures Grants Program in 2015, DelinaDreamProductions will receive support for the documentary Bare Soles Bare Soul.  Bare Soles Bare Soul will explore the sociocultural experience of eight African American women who have studied and practiced various traditional African dance styles…
Started in 2005, Grupo Folklórico Juan Colorado offers free Mexican folkórico (folk dance) instruction to students of Planada Elementary School in Planada, California.  The group is voluntarily taught and directed by committed community member Carolina Arceo. A grant from ACTA’s Living Cultures Grants Program in 2015…
Pangalay is a dance style characterized by its fluid and graceful hand, wrist, and arm gestures, a smooth shuffling glide of the feet, and sharp, powerful strikes and stances from anciet Philippine marital arts.  Pangalay orginates from the Sulu Archipelago generally by Ta’u Sug, Badjao, and Sama and some parts…
The descendants of the Yoruba people of Nigeria continue to preserve their connection to their ancestral traditions and art forms through ritual song, dance, and drumming.  The nuances of these traditional elements are available only to those initiated, allowing for a robust spiritual knowledge and deeper understanding of the religious…
Odissi is the oldest of the eight classical dance forms of India, dating back to the 1st century BCE.  A devotional dance typically performed by temple dancers in the east Indian state of Odisha, Odissi was suppressed under British rule (the colonial rulers considered it immoral).  It was revived in…
While there are many styles of Balkan Romani (“Gypsy”) women’s dance, perhaps the most popular, uniquely Romani dance is the kyuchek.  Of Turkish origin, kyuchek can be danced either as a communal line dance with synchronized steps or as a solo improvisation.  Line dances tend to have more contained repetitive…
Bharatanatyam is a classical Indian dance form originating in the South Indian temple dance tradition, which combines the arts of the stage, music, poetry, costuming, and rhythm.  Bharatanatyam is characterized by graceful movements, intricate footwork, sculpturesque poses, and deep dramatic elements which require years of rigorous training to perfect. An…