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Sean Gaskell plays traditional songs on the 21-stringed West African kora. The kora is native to the Mandé peoples who live in Gambia, Senegal, Mali, Guinea and Guinea Bissau and is traditionally played by oral and musical historians known as griots. The kora is a melodic and seemingly peaceful instrument, which is somewhat contrary to its musical repertoire. Many songs tell ancient stories of war and hardship, while others praise people of high political status. While the kora is only 300 years old, some commonly played songs can be traced back 800 years to the Mande empire's founding. Gaskell has studied extensively under the instruction of Malamini Jobarteh and Moriba Kuyateh of Brikama, The Gambia, and Kane Mathis of Brooklyn, NY. Gaskell has been featured at numerous festivals in the US, The Gambia and Senegal. The whole family will enjoy learning about the kora and listening to its unique sound. Adults and families with ages 7 and older.