Flint Hills Family Festival logo

SCHOOL WEEK
MAY 29 – JUNE 1

FAMILY WEEKEND
JUNE 1 | 5-9PM
JUNE 2 | 10AM-8PM

 

TICKETS ON SALE NOW!

ARTISTS REPRESENTING 25+ COUNTRIES

EVERYONE IS WELCOME

Flint Hills Festival photo by Laura Alpizar

Outdoor Performances and Activities

Learn a new kind of dance, hear music from all over the world, get your face painted, or make a new balloon animal friend, all for free at the Flint Hills Family Festival! Keep scrolling for descriptions of the local artists appearing at this year’s Festival. To see these performances and activities organized by time and location, check out our Outdoor Performance Schedule.


Music & Dance

Afoutayi Haitian Dance, Music and Arts Company

Founded and directed by native Haitian artists with extensive experience in dance instruction, choreography, acting and storytelling, Afoutayi Haitian Dance, Music and Arts Company battles the misconceptions of Haitian culture through educational and expressive arts. Our mission is to inspire and educate youth of all ages to celebrate the mosaic of Haitian traditional culture through dance, percussion, song and storytelling. Founded in 2009 in California by Djenane Saint Juste, Afoutayi produces high quality events dedicated to promoting knowledge and understanding of Haitian culture history and traditional arts.

Appearing during School Week only.


Alma Andina

Alma Andina, or Soul of the Andes, is a Minneapolis-based group that performs Andean and Latin American music, fused with contemporary electronic rhythms and textures.


Arch8

Arch8 is a dance company based in the Netherlands and led by Artistic Director Erik Kaiel. They will perform an athletic, parkour performance during the Friday evening street dance party.


The Bazillions

Upbeat, interactive, kid-friendly rock-n-roll. Young and old get to rock out to songs about getting a new pair of shoes, a messy room, superheroes and much more!


CAAM Chinese Dance Theatre 
CAAM

CAAM Chinese Dance Theater is the largest dance nonprofit group in Minnesota. We are dedicated to preserving and celebrating our Chinese cultural heritage and enriching a diverse community through the universal language of dance. With 25 years of bringing Chinese dance to this community through the generous support of the community, including the Minnesota State Arts Board, we have served families and delighted audiences with some of the best locally produced Chinese dance in the county.


CHAT ASU Dancers

A youth hip-hop dance group and Hmong cultural dance group from Center for Hmong Art and Talent.


Circus Manduhai

Acrobatics and juggling with audience participation.

Appearing during School Week only.


Curio Dance
Curio Dance

Giselle and Dario Mejia began learning traditional dances of Latin America from their father, the Puerto Rican “Salsa King.” She continued her versatile dance training at nationally-acclaimed Larkin Dance Studio engaged in ballet, tap, jazz, character, and hip-hop dance forms and eventually earning a Bachelors of Fine Arts, Cum Laude from Purchase College Conservatory of Dance at State University. Giselle has been privileged to travel to Spain, South America, China, Russia, South Africa, Egypt and across the United States to perform at principal theaters and study with National Dance Companies, including Luna Negra Dance Theater of Chicago and world-renown technology driven dance company iLuminate, as see on America’s Got Talent. Giselle and her brother, Dario, now reside in their home state of Minnesota, Co-Directing Curio Dance and earning a Masters Degree in Performing Arts in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Come learn Cuban Dance led by Chini Perez!

Appearing during School Week only.


Cyril Paul and the Calypso Monarchs

A lively interval of toe-tapping dance tunes rendered by experienced professional musicians, who will fill your dreams with life in the islands of the Caribbean. Don’t miss it!


DJ Digie

DJ Digie will provide music for a Dance Party during the School Week and Family Weekend of the Festival.


DJ Kool Akiem

DJ Kool Akiem will have a Dance Party in the Ordway lobby space on Saturday, June 3rd. Come and dance!


El Arco Iris Center for the Arts

El Arco Iris Center for the Arts, also known as El Arco Iris (EAI), is a St. Paul non-profit organization whose mission is to create a community that empowers and inspires children and families through traditional Afro-Puerto Rican music, art, dance and song. The organization was founded in 1993 and has served hundreds of Minnesota youth, adults and organizations since its inception. We will perform at the Children’s Festival and will invite the audience to be part of a bombazo in front of the Ordway.


Ensō Daiko

Ensō Daiko offers loud, energetic performances that combine music, dance, culture, and pure athleticism. They perform a variety of traditional and contemporary taiko repertoire, with an emphasis on original compositions. The group regularly premieres new work adding their unique voice to the expanding canon and innovation of North American taiko. Through performances, studio classes and school residencies, Ensō Daiko has taught thousands of students of all ages and abilities. Ensō Daiko was founded as Mu Daiko in 1997 by Rick Shiomi. New Artistic Director, Jennifer Weir, renamed it Ensō Daiko in 2017, when TaikoArts Midwest took over the taiko program formerly supported by Theater Mu.


Ritika Ganguly

Ritika Ganguly is a New Delhi-born Minneapolis-based composer, anthropologist, and vocalist working in Bengali folk music. She has a deeply personal approach to interpreting the Baul genre of music and poetry, and has released two singles this year from her commissioned and acclaimed musical work Osthir. Her work brings disparate music styles, aesthetics, and disciplines together, and invites adventurous audiences. She has performed widely, including at stages and venues in New Delhi, and locally, at the Cedar Cultural Center, Red Eye, Pillsbury House Theatre. 

Appearing during school week only.


House of Dance

House of Dance Twin Cities is a collective organization, established in the Spring of 2012. At House of Dance Twin Cities, we are dedicated to serving our community by creating a space that provides opportunities to cultivate creative expression, self-empowerment, and community development, while simultaneously inspiring people of all ages to be a force of positive change in our community. We work together day in and day out to uphold our mission. Collectively, we have been involved in countless creative projects and have dedicated much of our time to teaching and mentoring local youth in schools and community centers. Each performance at the Festival will include a live Hip Hop dance performance and an interactive portion where we’ll call up volunteers to learn short dance routines.


Kala Vandanam Dance Company

Suchitra Sairam founded Kala Vandanam in 2002, with the vision of sharing the beauty and depth of Bharatanatyam, the oldest and most widely performed classical tradition in India, through education, outreach and performance.


Kalpulli Yaocenoxtli

Kalpulli Yaocenoxtli is a traditional Mexica Nahua dance and drum circle that is committed to lifelong learning, preserving and practicing the traditions of the Mexica-Nahua culture.


Koo Koo Kanga Roo

Koo Koo Kanga Roo is an interactive dance party duo, made up of Bryan Atchison and Neil Olstad, and based in Minneapolis.


Leah Nelson

Choreographer, dancer and educator in the Twin Cities. Leah will lead hip hop dance parties with the help of DJ Digie.

Appearing during School Week only.


Karla Nweje

Do you enjoy expressing yourself through dance? Have you ever tried to use your body as a tool for rhythm? Audiences will experience a performance inspired by the practices of the Gullah Geechee Nation and by African American Collegiate Stepping, where dance meets body percussion! Spectators will then have the opportunity become participants by learning and presenting some of the moves demonstrated in the piece. Join Teaching and Performing Artists Karla Nweje and Derek Philips to see, hear, and explore in a fun, supportive atmosphere.

Appearing during School Week only.


Leo Lara

Interactive demonstration of Latin American Folkloric instruments on Tuesday, May 31 in Rice Park.

Appearing during School Week only.


Los Alegres Bailadores

Los Alegres Bailadores brings brightly colored costumes, fancy footwork, along with tradition and culture to the stage. Audiences experience the different styles of dance and music true to the states of Mexico, which are proudly and authentically performed by Los Alegres Bailadores.


Mariachi Flor y Canto

Mariachi Flor y Canto plays the music of Mexico through the heart of the rancheros, sones, and boleros. This music is one of the great prides of Mexico.


Native Pride Dancers

A Twin Cities-based company who blend modern and traditional Native American dance styles.


Pistolera

Highly regarded New York band Pistolera has toured its accordion-driven dance songs in six different countries since its debut in 2005.


Rince Na Chroi and Two Tap Trio

Traditional Irish dancing and music.


River Valley Dance Academy

River Valley Dance Academy seeks to provide a dance education for persons of all abilities. Strong in the belief “all bodies can dance”, the studio has a progressive curriculum through pre professional for students seeking to study Ballet , Modern, Jazz, and Tap technique, as well as Musical Theatre, Lyrical, Contemporary, and Hip Hop. The adaptive dance program began in 1986, and reaches out to students of various abilities and challenges to provide opportunities to dance in an integrated setting. The dancers perform throughout the community at school, worship, health care, and festival settings, as well as studio productions.


Salsa del Soul

A presentation of a variety of genres of dance music from the Spanish-speaking Caribbean.


Lumhe Sampson

During the School Week, experience traditional and modern exhibitions of Native Hoop Dance, an ancient art of storytelling and healing.

Appearing during School Week only.


Siama’s Congo Roots

Siama’s Congo Roots plays engaging feel-good music from the heart of Africa.


Step With Soul

Led by Sean Burns, Step With Soul empowers youth through the art of stepping.


Tiyumba Drum & Dance

West African drum and dance led by Fatawu Sayibu.


Two Tap Trio

The Two Tap Trio will touch your heart and then get you up dancing! High energy traditional Irish music – jigs, reels, polkas and songs – with a trio of outstanding musicians including Live Ireland’s “Best Vocalist of the Year” Norah Rendell, internationally acclaimed guitarist Brian Miller and AJ Srubas on the fiddle.

 

Activities and Traveling Artists

Arti Chandak, Henna Artist

Henna is a folk art from India. Henna is a plant known for the reddish color of its extract. It can be applied on mostly hands and feet. Arti has been doing henna art for more than 20 years.


Chicks on Sticks

Chicks on Sticks will stilt in colorful costumes and interact with the crowd.


Chit Chat Clowns

Chit Chat Clowns create balloon art.


Funtime Funktions

Mr. Fun will be there with toys from around the world. Fun for all ages! Mr. Fun will have a face painter with him in the Kids Zone on Saturday and Sunday!


Gonzee Designs

Face painting by Gonzee Designs.


Magic Justin

See Magic Justin amaze crowds during the School Week with incredible sleight-of-hand, amazing feats and some crazy silliness.

Appearing during School Week only.


David and Heather Olson

Balloon twisting for all ages – animal creations, flowers, and hats!


Rainbow Party Arts

Facepainting.


Silly Miss Tilly

The one and only Silly Miss Tilly will host the Fun Zone and make balloon art.

 

Emcees

Yolande Bruce
Xcel Energy Foundation World Dance Stage MC

Jared Hanks
Flint HIils World Music Stage MC

IBé
Flint HIils World Music Stage MC

IBé was born in Guinea, West Africa, grew up in Sierra Leone, Evanston, IL and St. Cloud, MN. Now he makes his home in the Twin Cities as a writer and spoken word artist.


Maia Maiden
MC for Xcel Energy World Dance Stage during School Week

SEE MORE PERSPECTIVE
Flint Hills World Music Stage MC

Deanna StandingCloud
Xcel Energy Foundation World Dance Stage MC