PULLMAN, Wash. — Washington State University’s Festival Dance will wrap up the 2003 Great Performances Series on April 7 when it hosts Manding Jata, a multinational troupe of performers from French West Africa.

The performance will begin at 7:30 p.m. in Beasley Coliseum Theater, combining powerful drumming and dancing with vibrant costumes. All seats are reserved. Tickets range from $16-$20 for adults, $10-$16 for students, and children 12 and under are $8-$12. Seats in the first seven rows are $28, and a discount is available for groups.

Manding Jata presents the cultural legacy of the great Manding/Mali Empire, centered in the fabled city of Timbuktu. Once as large as modern day Europe, the empire existed around 1000 A.D. The performance repertoire emphasizes the golden age, between the 13th and 15th centuries, complete with headdress and ceremonial masks, and fast and exhilarating rhythms.

For more information, contact Beasley Performing Arts Coliseum at (509) 335-3525 or visit the Manding Jata Web site at www.manding.net.