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Raíces Cultural Arts Collective



The Raíces Cultural Arts Collaborative is a loose collective of musicians and artists working to preserve cultural, traditional and folkloric art forms. Participants in this initiative will form a digital network and platform to share and support one another’s work, and work collectively with other artists. Members can propose individual or collaborative artistic and research based projects, working with Raíces to access and obtain the resources required to implement the projects.


We are a network of artists, musicians, researchers and culture bearers. Members are active in the preservation and sharing of cultural, folkloric, and traditional genres, seeking to work together creatively with one another and with Raíces Cultural Center to form artistic and research based collaborations, and are invited to contact us about joining this initiative.


The Raíces Cultural Arts Collaborative seeks to provide support for artists and researchers working on individual and cooperative projects in the traditional and folkloric arts, public history and humanities. During a time when public gatherings are restricted, artists, researchers, and arts educators are responding in creative ways to use digital platforms. This initiative provides members with the opportunity to share and promote each others work, and form relationships for artistic collaboration.


The Raíces Cultural Arts Collective was formed after the conclusion of a series of planning meetings held in the summer of 2020 to explore the topic of Gender and Folkloric Expressions of Latin America and the Caribbean. The members of the research panel, funded by an incubation grant from the New Jersey Council for the Humanities, practice, perform, preserve, research and teach a diversity of cultural, traditional and folkloric art forms. They decided to immediately work together as a collaborative group on artistic and research based projects, brainstormed a set of potential projects and a long-term plan, and have already begun producing their first collaborative media project, a round-robin of oral history interviews that will be placed in a collection on the Raíces Digital Archive.


  • Gender and Folkloric Expression of Latin America and the Caribbean Oral History Collection: round robin oral history interviews. Full Group Collaborative Project.
    Digital collection now available
  • Retumba and One World Arts Digital Archive Collection. Organizational and artist collaboration with Raíces Digital Archive.
    Expected launch date, June 2022
  • Songs of Healing, Songs of the Ancestors: Digital artistic collaboration including original music composition and media creation.
    In pre-production! Expected premiere date, December 2022

Artist Directory

Drummer, Dancer

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Yvette Martínez

Drummer, Musician, Composer

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Nancy Friedman

Bombera, Artivist, Independent Scholar

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Melanie Maldonado

Capoeirista, Musician, Dancer, Researcher

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Sarah Town

Capoeirista, Drummer, Dancer

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Jana Burton

Drummer, Ethnomusicologist

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Elizabeth Sayre

Interested in Joining?