Kokofu Nnwomkro & Adowa

Source The Ghana Report

Referring to the title of this write-up, Kokofu is the name of a town in the Ashanti region of Ghana.

It is also a surname for some natives of the region. The immediate past Executive Director of the Environmental Protection Agency, E.P.A, Dr Henry Kwabena Kokofu is an example.

The other name in the story title is “Nnwomkro, ” a traditional music group.

“Adowa” sums it up. Adowa is the traditional dance of the Ashantis.

It is characterized by the swift and entangling movements of the feet of dancers, and these correspond with action on hands as the entire human frame swings in a jerky fashion.

The irony is that the jerks are seen as coordination and organization since these are what the dance employs for delectable display. It is dancing to the tunes of drumbeats and other traditional instruments.

The Nnwomkro group from Kokofu features drums, a traditional xylophone made to look like a violin, an instrument for spinning, and other instruments that reinforce the acoustics when they are rattled like bells.

Kokofu Nnwomkro & Adowa

This man is the male adowa dancer of the group. A scene like this usually takes a conspicuous spot on Manhyia grounds. There, they are visually identifiable, and their music is noisy enough to catch the attention of passers-by. The key members of Kokofu Nnwomkro and Adowa are women. In sequence of appearance in this story are, Ohemaa Birago, Kokofu Serwaa, Obaa Yaa, and Akosua Boatemaa.

Kokofu Nnwomkro & Adowa

Kokofu Nnwomkro & Adowa

The trio of Birago, Serwaa, and Obaa yaa are often tied together to the front seats singing and casting the appellations of chiefs and queen mothers retinues which file past them on their way to durbar grounds.

These women pull all the magic under their sleeves and advertise the gymnastics in marketing to attract the attention of people, and their songs are swayers especially if one appreciates culturally intense songs.

Below, you will find their chief adowa dancer, Ohemaa Birago up on her feet swinging her shapely figure in the dance. She would fling herself across incoming visitors or personalities, and when the latter stopped to admire her showcase, she then moved concentrically around the person. This display targets and traps significant people who may or may not bask in the euphoria these dance steps cause around them.

Most importantly, some do the needful by dropping money in a box or directly putting it in the dancer’s palm. The Kokofu Nnwomkoro and Adowa Group were created by Kokofu Serwaa and it is a means of livelihood to the members.

Kokofu Nnwomkro & Adowa Kokofu Nnwomkro & Adowa


In the picture just above, are scenes showing the backs of Ohemaa Birago (right), and Obaa Yaa in quick dance steps towards arriving guests in Manhyia during the 12 May 2024 Akwasidaekese which marked the climax of celebrations of Asantehene’s silver jubilee in Kumasi. Below are some other members of the group who are interspersed with the pictures of those already introduced.

& Adowa Nnwomkro & Adowa Nnwomkro & Adowa Nnwomkro & Adowa Nnwomkro & Adowa  Adowa

Nnwomkro and Adowa are vestiges of Ghanaian culture which has come under serious strain of the pressure arising from the interplays of the international systems.

They highlight Ashanti’s tenacity when it comes to cultural preservation. In the print media, readers miss a lot because Nnwomkoro and Adowa are best-savored in the middle of live shows, shrill music performance with traditional instruments that makes you feel an Ashanti, and for that matter, Ghanaian.

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