Roger Thayer Stone Center For Latin American Studies

Tulane University

Rump-A-Pum-Pum Holiday Drum Summit

November 16th, 2013

Dixon Hall
Tulane University, Uptown Campus

Photo: Cuban percussionist Alexey Marti performs at the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival in 2012. Marti will be one of six musicians performing at the Rump-A-Pum-Pum Holiday Drum Summit on Nov. 16. (Photo from the New Orleans Center for the Gulf South)

By: Benton Oliver

“You just want that feeling; there’s going to be such a vibe!” says Karen Celestan, senior program manager of Music Rising at Tulane University, about the second “Rump-A-Pum-Pum…A Holiday Drum Summit.” The event will take place Saturday (Nov. 16) at 6:30 p.m. in Dixon Hall on the uptown campus, and it is free and open to the public.

Rump-A-Pum-Pum, hosted by Music Rising at Tulane, will consist of a repertoire of familiar holiday songs being played by six virtuoso New Orleans musicians. The songs will be performed as interpretations of the originals, incorporating distinctive New Orleans and Cuban rhythms, techniques and sounds.

“I hand-picked these musicians because I wanted to challenge them with this concept and see how they chose to tackle it,” Celestan says. The featured musicians will be New Orleans greats Shannon Powell and Johnny Vidacovich each on a drum set, Cuban percussionist Alexey Marti, pianist Larry Sieberth, saxophonist Roderick Paulin and bassist Chris Severin.

Music Rising at Tulane is a division of the New Orleans Center for the Gulf South at Tulane University, which works to research, promote and teach about musical cultures with origins in states touching the Gulf of Mexico: Florida, Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana and Texas. Cuba is also included in the focus of the center.

Music Rising is an initiative launched by U2’s The Edge, legendary music producer Bob Ezrin, and Gibson Guitar chair Henry Juszkiewicz in response to the devastating effects of Hurricane Katrina on New Orleans’ musical culture. Its goal is to restore and preserve NOLA’s unique musical tradition through the donation of instruments to New Orleans youth, as well as the development of a coordinate major at Tulane, Musical Cultures of the Gulf South.

“Rump-A-Pum-Pum is just one way in which the center and Music Rising at Tulane can highlight the similarities between the musics of Cuba and New Orleans, and share this interconnectedness with the world,” Celestan says.

Benton Oliver is a junior at Tulane University majoring in communication and music

See the original article that was published in Tulane’s New Wave




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Upcoming Events

Latin American Studies Pre-Professional Alumni Speaker Series

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Each year in association with LAST 4000, the capstone seminar for graduating seniors in Latin American Studies, we invite recent graduates to speak about their current employment and the path that took them there—and to give advice to students soon to hit the job market. We invite all students to attend these informal discussions.

Speakers will speak at 11:00 a.m. for 45 minutes to an hour. Out of courtesy for the speaker and the class, we ask that guests arrive on time and stay for the entire presentation. Speakers will also speak in the 9:30 session, but will begin later. If you would like to attend this section or would like additional information, contact Edie Wolfe at ewolfe@tulane.eduu

Thursday, September 17
William Faulkner (2009), Director, Flux Research, Monitoring and Evaluation; formerly i2i Institute and Plan Políticas Públicas, São Paulo, Brazil. Flux is a consultancy focused on research, monitoring and evaluation that links those spearheading social change with the social sciences approaches, methods, and services required to evaluta operations and impact. After graduating in 2009, Will completed at masters in Latin American Studies at the Stone Center and went on to work as a researcher and evaluation coordinator with a similar organization in São Paulo, Brazil.

Tuesday, October 6
Katie Gray (2013) formerly Accounts Representative, Latin America and Brazil accounts, Intralox. Intralox is the world leader of modular plastic conveyor belts located in Hammond, Louisiana. Katie worked for several years as their tri-lingual Spanish and Portuguese speaking Account Representative, providing service support to Customers in Latin and South America.

Thursday, October 8
Bianca Falcon (2013) Chief of Staff, Republíca LLC. República, LLC is a privately held national advertising, branding, promotions, digital media and public relations company headquartered in Miami, Florida. República is a minority owned and certified company that ranks among the Top 50 U.S. Hispanic Agencies

Tuesday, October 20
Allison Bakamjian, (2010) Program Services Manager, Shanti Project’s Women’s Cancer Program, San Francisco; formerly Peace Corps Education Specialist, Santa Marta, Colombia. Prior to her Peace Corps volunteership, Allison worked with AmeriCorps*VISTA as the Volunteer Supervisor working with New Orleans Outreach and local public schools.

Thursday, October 22
Christine Sweeney (2010), Cybersecurity Policy and Program Analyst, Office of Management and Budget, Executive Office of the President; formerly Program Officer, Latin America and the Caribbean, International Republican Institute. In her position with the IRI, Christine managed democracy and governance programs in Venezuela and Ecuador, helping to cultivate relationships with field-based and international implementing civil society partners and local political stakeholders to carry out the program objectives of promoting democratic transparency throughout the region

Tuesday, Nov. 17
Michael Murray (2010), Senior Consultant, FSG. FSG is a mission-driven consulting firm for leaders concerned with social change. Mike will discuss his work with the organization, including his research in Chile for a collaborative report on how local companies can increase competitiveness and profitability by helping to solve social problems such as poverty, education, and health.

Tuesday, Dec. 1 (To be confirmed)
Amanda Parker (2007), Project Manager & Trainer for Agriculture & Sustainable Land Use, World Wild Life Fund. Amanda works primarily in South America, specifically Paraguay managing and coordinating conservation projects in the Pantanal and Atlantic Forest Eco-Regions.

Thursday Dec. 3 (To be confirmed)
David Klauber (2008) Emergency Child Production Specialist, Save the Children. Most recently David worked as a volunteer program manager and grant-writer for the Unión de Agricultores Minifundistas, an association of organizations working on grass roots development de Guatemala in Guatemala City.. David will speak primarily about his experience with Save the Children in refugee camps on the Ethiopian-Somali border

Photographic Exhibition "Precision"

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The Consulate of Mexico in New Orleans is proud to present a photographic exhibition, “Precision,” by Mexican artists Luis Arturo Chacon. There will be an opening reception on November 12th at 6 PM. For more information, visit the Consulate webpage.

Casa Borrega's 5th Annual Latin Jazz Fest

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Casa Borrega will host its Fifth Annual Latin Jazz Fest on Friday, December 11, 2015, from 7pm to 2am at the People’s Health New Orleans Jazz Market, 1426 Oretha Castle Haley Boulevard, a state of the art performance venue – ideally suited for this event. Deep roots connect the Crescent City with Latin America from Jelly Roll Morton’s “Latin Tinge” to newly formed musical entities that will be performing at this festival. Many longtime local musicians have made Latin Jazz a way of life and Casa Borrega celebrates this choice and artistry at its annual event. A new addition to the Fest is a multi-national ensemble of talented dancers who will perform throughout the evening.

7pm – Muevelo Tribute : Tito Puente & Celia Cruz
8:45pm – Javier Gutierrez & VIVAZ!
10:30pm – Alexis Guevara Afro Cuban Trio
12:15am – Latin Dance Party with DJ

  • Salsa dance demonstrations throughout *

Food by Casa Borrega & cocktails at the Bolden Bar
Tickets: $20 – available at
1/2 off for students with valid ID at the door

Hope to see you there! For further information please don’t hesitate to contact Linda Stone, 504.292.3705 or Hugo Montero, 210-392-9365 or email or visit

La Hora del Cuento: Bilingual Story Time at the Pebbles Center Uptown

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Join the Pebbles Center at the Children’s Resource Center branch of the New Orleans Public Library for bilingual story time.

Held the second Monday of every month at 5:15 PM, we will read a book and have a craft based on the book. Past books include Dear Primo, ‘Twas Nochebueno, and Call Me Tree/Llamame Arbol.

Story Hour Books
Oct. 12
Funny Bones by Duncan Tonatiuh
Celebrate Halloween and Day of the Dead with this story time!

November 9 ­
María Had a Little Llama by Angela Dominguez
Learn about Peru and the Andean highlands through the eyes of Maria and her llama!

December 14
Martín de Porres by Gary Schmidt
Learn about this important Saint and his role in helping the poor!

Ancient Maya Women: A K-16 Educator Workshop

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LARC, in conjunction with the Annual Tulane Maya Symposium and the New Orleans Museum of Art, is hosting a teacher workshop on the ancient Maya. The workshop will introduce information on women in the ancient Maya world as well as providing activities to introduce into the classroom. Check back soon for more information.

To register, visit the Maya Symposium Registration page.

13th Annual Tulane Maya Symposium "Ixiktaak: Ancient Maya Women"

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The Middle American Research Institute, in conjunction with Far Horizons, the Stone Center for Latin American Studies, The Consulate of Mexico in New Orleans, and the New Orleans Museum of Art, is proud to present the Thirteenth Annual Tulane Maya Symposium and Workshop. This year’s symposium, titled “Ixiktaak: Ancient Maya Women,” will focus on the significance of women in ancient Maya society. The invited scholars will explore this topic from different disciplinary perspectives, including archaeology, iconography, physical anthropology, and epigraphy to illuminate the names, roles, lives, accomplishments, and practices of women in ancient Maya society. Recent research in the Maya area has dramatically enhanced our understanding of gender roles in ancient Maya society particularly women’s daily lives, their role in power relations and regional politics, their relevance to and symbolic meaning within religion and ritual, and the economics of gender. New texts, new analytical techniques, and new discoveries discussed in these presentations will help us appreciate how complex and dynamic Classic Maya notions of gender were.

The keynote address will be given by Dr. Mary Ellen Miller of Yale University who will speak about her recent research on Jaina figurines.

For more information or to register, visit the symposium homepage.