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About Mamady Mansare

Mamady Mansare playing the fluteMamady Mansaré Biography

Mamady "Tambou” Mansaré III, 4th generation Master Flute player from Guinea West Africa is known across Africa and around the world for his extraordinarily beautiful musicianship and artistry.  In addition to being a world class dancer, singer, and acrobat for Les Ballets Africains, the most renowned and prestigious performance company in all of West Africa, he holds the noble position of principal flute player in this revered company.  In fact, he, his father (from 1988-2004), and his grandfather (from 1958-1988) are the only people who have ever had the honor of holding this position in this acclaimed company.  In Guinea, the Mansaré family is known and regarded as a valuable national treasure.

Since he was born, Mr. Mansaré has embraced his familial role and exceptional talent as historian, story teller, musician and dancer, serving his country first in several private dance and drum companies, next with the Theatre National de Guinea (1999-2000), then with the National Ballet Djoliba (2001-2004) and now with the largest and most acclaimed company in Africa, Les Ballets Africains (2004-present).  Mamady regularly works with many of Africa’s finest individual master artists such as Mamady Keita and Famadou Konate, and currently is a member of the director team of Les Ballets Africans as the ‘Registeur Adjoint’, working closely with Hamidou Bangora and the rest of the directors for this great company. 

Mamady is a sought after recording artist in West Africa, and his and his father’s music can be heard on many labels and with many internationally known and celebrated artists, such as Momo Wandel Soumah’s albums Matchowe, Afro Swing and Momo Le Doyen;  Mamady Keita’s albums Mögöbalu, Mamady Lèè and Mandeng Djara;  Les Ballets Africains’ albums La Mémoire du Manding, Héritage, and Silo (and others);  Les Espoirs de Coronthie’s albums Tinkhinyi (and others);  Moussa "Tanga” Camara’s album Sabou youma vol.1;  Kelontan Cissohko’s album Koraba;  and even in the films of French director Laurent Chevalier Djembefola, Mogobalu, Momo Le Doyen et l’Expérience Africaine.

Born in 1976 in Kissidougou, in the Forest Region of Guinea, Mamady is a member of the Malinke ethnic group. The entire paternal line of the Mansaré family, are a clear and famous example of the way ancient West African traditions, customs and knowledge have been passed from one generation to the next for hundreds and hundreds of years.  Mr. Mansaré is a direct descendant of Sundiata Keita, the founder of the Mandingo Empire of the thirteenth century, and since his birth he has been rooted in the stories and traditions of his culture. Now his government and the people of Guinea count on him to chronicle and keep the details of these stories alive for the world.  He takes pride in his role as a cultural ambassador, not only as a beautiful performer and recording artist, but also by teaching classes and workshops. For years Mr. Mansaré has been organizing and leading training courses and cultural intensives in both the capital city Conakry, as well as in his native village deep in the interior of Guinea.  He works with students from all over the world: Mexico, United States, France, Japan, Netherlands ...etc., to share with them the power and exhilaration of his grand culture. Students and audience members from across the globe regard him as an exceptional teacher, and charismatic performer, and an enormous resource of traditional information.

Lastly, Mamady’s ancestral heritage, his time spent in the untouched traditions of central and eastern Guinea, and his many years of participating in the top performance companies in Guinea, has allowed him to become a fine costume and instrument designer.  Directors of dance and drum performance companies all of the world now come to him to build instruments for them, and design specific traditional costumes for their productions.  His profound and intimate understanding of history of West Africa’s music, dance and culture make him one of the most sought after instrument makers, costume designers artists and teachers in Guinea.