On Wednesday April 26, TeachRock team members Bill Carbone and Christine Nick visited the lower East Side of Manhattan for a guest appearance on behalf of the Rosie’s Theater Kids at New York Public School 140. Founded by Rosie O’donnell, the Theater Kids foundation provides physical education through Broadway-connected dance to more than 2,000 New York City elementary students each year.
In winter 2017, Rosie’s Theater kids began the semester by attending On Your Feet! The Story of Emilio and Gloria Estefan and they’ve since practiced the choreography to Estefan’s “Rhythm is Gonna Get You” weekly. TeachRock’s Bill Carbone used the song’s video, which features Cuban bata drumming, to demonstrate cultural connections between Nigeria, Cuba, and Miami, Florida. Students sang, stomped, and clapped a basic Cuban rhythm, and also learned about the human and geographic origins of the rhythm as well as the routes it traveled during the era of Transatlantic slave trade.