Darius Brubeck Plays Benefit Concert for Humankind Foundation

On May 5th in Santa Fe, jazz pianist Darius Brubeck will play a concert, “Darius Brubeck and Jazz Friends,” to benefit Humankind Foundation. The Humankind Foundation was founded by Santa Fe R.N. Kristin St. Clair in 2003. It supports two projects in Tanzania. The first is AIDS education. The second is an ongoing project that works to stop the practice of female genital mutilation among Maasai girls and women in rural Tanzania, called Kamilika. Kamilika takes place at Noonkodin High School/safehouse where Maasai girls receive education and sanctuary from FGM and early marriage.

Kristin St. Clair

St. Clair explains that while no one knows precisely how and when female circumcision started, mention of the practice dates as far back as 143. B.C.E. in Greek writing and that  when Ethiopian women arrived in Egypt in 50 B.C.E., they were circumcised. St. Clair was working for the Clinton Foundation in Tanzania doing project development for rural African AIDS education when she grew the idea to found Humankind.

Song, St. Clair says, was her first evidence that an enduring change had been made.

“Because it’s a non written language, everything is translated through song and story.  Once they form choirs around the issue of not cutting and doing alternate rites of passage, they take that information by choir from village to village.

Maasai Woman and Child

Maasai Woman and Child

“That’s when you know you have made a long lasting sustainable result because it is incorporated in the mythology.”

Sunday’s concert takes place at 4 p.m. at the Lensic. (Ticket prices range from $25-$45 and a donor VIP reception occurs after the show at Casa Nova Gallery. For more information call 930-0993.)

Darius Brubeck is the son of jazz legend Dave Brubeck, who died in December 2012. Based in the UK, Darius performs internationally and played at the Kennedy Center 2009 awards ceremony at which his father was honored. In Santa Fe this Sunday, he will be joined by jazz rhythm section Straight Up. Opening the show will be jazz singer Maura Dhu Studi. Brubeck will perform jazz standards, South African jazz and Dave Brubeck hits.

Humankind Foundation needs currently entail bringing more teachers to the school-sanctuary, enlarging the dormitories and providing sanitary water. Frida, who is a graduate of Noonkodin, plans to come to Santa Fe to begin medical studies. A documentary film will be produced in collaboration with Santa Fe Community College, St. Clair says.


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