Spoken Hand is an internationally unique hand drumming orchestra composed of four percussion batteries that represent the traditions of Afro Cuban bata, Brazilian samba, North Indian tabla and West African djembe.
The focus of the ensemble is to honor both the secular and sacred elements of each drumming tradition for its uniqueness and to unify these traditions with fresh vision and composition. The core of the process lies in the innovative arrangements and orchestrations linking and merging the different batteries. Spoken Hand was founded by Daryl Kwasi Burgee and is co-directed by Mr. Burgee and Lenny Seidman, both renowned percussionists. The orchestra includes many of Philadelphia’s most experienced traditionally-based percussionists and teachers in their respective disciplines. The company offers various educational formats in their residency package.
Spoken Hand has established a model for a traditional hand drumming orchestra contributing to the creative legacy in the field of world music, and has become recognized as a powerful cultural force that fosters cross-cultural appreciation and understanding.
From the North Indian classical tabla right across the cultural spectrum that spans the African diaspora, Spoken Hand is a melting pot of drumming cultures. It gives value to the element of traditional drumming in a contemporary forum and is a collage of historical expression linking the past to the present.