Performing Art Ensembles

The Black Cultural Center of Purdue University sponsors several outstanding Performing Arts Ensembles which consist of students and community members. In a workshop setting, artists-in-residence prepare each group for major performances. For a reasonable fee, the BCC Performing Arts Ensembles are available for engagements in October, November, February and March.

The Purdue Express

The Purdue Express (PE) is a performance based touring company of Purdue University students. The Purdue Express performs a variety show including singing, dancing, monologues, and other theatrical forms providing information about Purdue University during recruitment events.

Gordon Parks Fine Arts Ensemble

The BCC's newest ensemble, Gordon Parks Ensemble (GPE) invites students interested in fine arts to express themselves through photography and other arts. Students participate in various projects and display their work in exhibitions.

Black Voices of Inspiration

Established in 1975, Black Voices of Inspiration (BVOI) is an exceptional choir dedicated to the performance of spirituals, gospels and contemporary songs of inspiration by African American composers.

Haraka Writers

The Haraka Writers is a collective body of students and community writers across the globe that first formed in 1973. Together, they create bold and informed literary work that establishes a strong voice for the modern black experience. The term “haraka” is Swahili for “expression” and the ensemble exemplifies just that.

Jahari Dance Troupe

Established in 1971, the Jahari Dance Troupe is a vibrant student dance company trained in a variety of techniques that range from traditional to contemporary trends of black dance. "Jahari" is Swahili for jewels, and these students often shine as such when they perform a dance repertoire that includes African dance, ballet, Caribbean, folk, jazz, modern dance and music video.

New Directional Players

The New Directional Players (NDP), which first performed in 1971, is a thought-provoking theatrical company that presents a variety of works related to the Afrocentric experience. The troupe has explored original literature authored by cutting-edge playwrights as well as classics by the likes of Ntozake Shange and Langston Hughes.

Black Thought Collective

The Black Thought Collective (BTC) is a student ensemble whose goal is to broaden and enhance the educational experience of involved students through knowledge sharing from an Afrocentric perspective. The group is guided by a professional scholar-in-residence who leads the programming and designs the curriculum.

Specifics for Concert Engagements

The Performing Arts Ensembles are sponsored by the Black Cultural Center. They are available for concert appearances for schools, churches and civic organizations. A performance fee is required to cover expenses. Persons interested in engaging the Black Cultural Center's Performing Arts Ensembles are encouraged to solidify arrangements at least three months in advance. As a reminder, the ensembles are available in October, November, February and March. For more details, please see the ensemble rates and information


Monday - Thursday
8 a.m. - 10 p.m.

8 a.m. - 8 p.m.


2 p.m. - 9 p.m.

*Library hours vary slightly

Contact Information

1100 Third St.
West Lafayette, IN 47907


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