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From Senegal to MIT

Rambax MIT is an ensemble dedicated to learning the art of sabar, a vibrant drum and dance tradition of the Wolof people of Senegal, West Africa.

Founded in 2001, Rambax MIT consists of students and members of the MIT community, and is co-directed by artist-in-residence Lamine Touré and faculty advisor Patricia Tang.

"Rambax MIT is more than just a performance ensemble - students are not only learning the practical aspect of playing drums, but learning the culture through stories that Lamine Touré tells."

Lamine Touré

Lamine Touré is widely recognized as one of Senegal's leading percussionists. Born into a griot family of sabar drummers, Touré has been drumming since the age of four, performing with his family troupe at weddings, baptisms, and dance events. Former percussionist for Nder et le Setsima Group, he now leads the Afro-mbalax band, Group Saloum. In addition to co-directing Rambax MIT, he also teaches sabar drum and dance classes in the Boston area. For more information, visit

Patricia Tang

Associate Professor Patricia Tang is an ethnomusicologist specializing in West African music. She is the author of Masters of the Sabar: Wolof Griot Percussionists of Senegal (Temple University Press, 2007), and received an AAUW American Postdoctoral Fellowship for her second book project, Africa Fête and the Globalization of Afropop. As a violinist, she has performed and recorded with African artists Nder et le Setsima Group, Positive Black Soul, Balla Tounkara, Balla Kouyate and Lamine Touré & Group Saloum.