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Enjoy pulsating African rhythms with kalimba master Njacko Backo on Sunday, November 14

Toronto, October 21, 2004 Montreal-based Njacko Backo, originally from Cameroon, performs an electrifying concert showcasing traditional African rhythms with riveting percussion, kalimba and African harp. As part of the Music with Bite concert series, African Rhythms takes place on Sunday, November 14, at 1 p.m., at Harbourfront Centre, 235 Queens Quay West. Tickets are $8 each or $25 for four tickets. For tickets and information, the public can call 416-973-4000 or visit www.harbourfrontcentre.com.

Njacko Backo is a kalimba master and also a dynamic performer who makes his own instruments including kalimbas, harps, drums and hand percussions. Learning how to make and play the kalimba from his grandfather and father, Backo is continuing the traditions of his lineage and sharing these skills with his own children as well as numerous enthusiasts in the North America. Backo has taught ongoing drum circles and performs with his students at various drumming festivals.

Backo left home at the age of 17 to travel through many African countries to further his musical knowledge. He produced two albums: Le Destin a cry of hope, and Bamileke which pays homage to his ancestors. In 1989, Backo moved to Montreal with his family and started working with many African musicians and dancers such as Boubacar Diabete, Yaya Diallo and Congolese dancer Zab Maboungo. During the same period, he recorded three new albums. In 1998, Backo created the group Kalimba Kalimba named in honour of his favourite instrument. In 1999, the Toronto African Music Awards presented Backo & Kalimba Kalimba with the award for the Best Traditional Group. He is currently recording a new album to be titled La Conscience africaine.

Music with Bite is an intimate, refreshing experience; children can sit up close to the artists and after the concert ask them questions, while enjoying a complimentary Natrel milk beverage and cookies. Music with Bite, a co-production with Jeunesses Musicales of Ontario, is designed to bring families to Harbourfront Centre to give them the opportunity to sample music of all styles in a friendly, accessible format. All of the artists selected to perform at the concerts bring an element of interactivity, education and entertainment to their programs. Jeunesses Musicales of Canada has, since 1949, dedicated its work to musical excellence and the promotion of music for young people. Jeunesses Musicales of Canada is a member of Jeunesses Musicales International.

Music with Bite is co-produced with Jeunesses Musicales of Ontario with the support of the Government of Canada, the City of Toronto through the Toronto Arts Council and the Ontario Arts Council.

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Media Contact:
Linda Liontis, 416-973-4381, lliontis@harbourfrontcentre.com
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