Hamburg percussionist Sylvia Franke has worked professionally with West African djembe percussion, enhancing her skills through a visit to West Africa as well as living and working with African musicians. A skilled educator, she trained under Moustaffa Tettey Addy (Ghana) and Famoudou Konaté (Guinea) as well as other internationally recognized families of musicians from West Africa.
As a professional musician, versatility is important to Sylvia. She was trained in Latin Percussion by Nils Fischer and in the Drum Circle Method by Arthur Hull. For over ten years, Silvia has worked as a percussionist in the musical The Lion King. She is one of the best djembe musicians in northern Germany. Since 1988, Silvia has been passing on the art of djembe drumming with great dedication and a diverse repertoire of didactic approaches in her Hamburg drum school. She has recorded four CD’s and published textbooks on Djembe-Percussion from West Africa and on drumming with children. With the Bangoura Group she is realizing a long-held dream – to arrange traditional West African music sensitively and at a high level as well as to engage in ‘cultural meetings of the mind’: “When I’m drumming, when the groove is right and everything is flowing, I feel as if I’m flying. At the same time, I’m centred and present. The power of the rhythm is forever captivating me in brand new ways.”