PA-PA-PA, denotes Pan African Performing Arts Preservation Association, Inc., is an organization dedicated to the preservation and presentation of the performing arts of Africa. The name was derived onomatopoetically from the sound of the rattle when played. PA-PA-PA- came into existence after reviewing and assessing a survey of the status of the performing arts of Africa within Africa, which was conducted by Recherche Pedagogie et Culture. The survey revealed that the availability of the traditional performing arts was virtually non-existent in the schools; and that these traditions, for the greater part, were housed in an archival or museum setting. Throughout Africa, the musical instruments were in a state of decay being viewed by a few tourists. The musical culture of Africa was largely held by a musical caste, families of musicians who trained their young. Since African music is largely an oral tradition, passed from one generation to the next by a mouth to ear process, each time an African musician dies, literally volumes of tradition are lost forever because the traditions still remain oral without written documentation. The status of the performing arts of Africa in the educational institutions of the United States is also in the same state or peril destined to be lost or distorted.
After viewing this critical assessment, PA-PA-PA-, came into being with the following aims and goals:
To preserve the performing arts through written notation (Greenotation for music, Labanotation for dance).
To establish a school to teach all aspects of the performing arts of Africa that will lead to masters and doctorate degrees
with a specialty in African performing arts.
To develop a journal, other publications, and texts.
To act as a clearinghouse for the dissemination of materials.
To act as a liaison between America and Africa in artistic research.