Faith Conant

  • Visiting Instructor in Music
  • Director of Five College West African Music Ensemble
Faith Conant

Faith Conant did her ethnomusicology research in Togo, West Africa, where she studied with master drummer Gadji Folly and performed with the Adjogbo Haborbor of the Adjigo of Lomé. She performed and taught Ewe music and dance in the Boston-based Agbekor Society led by David Locke for over twenty years.

In addition to her work with her main teachers David Locke, Gadji Folly, and Nani Agbeli, Ms. Conant has studied with Abraham Adzenyah, Professor Torgbui Midawo Alorwoyie and the late Godwin Agbeli. She has collaborated for many years with Nani Agbeli, JB Gnonlonfoun, Kwabena Boateng and many other African artists, including Michael Ofori in the MHC Theatre Department, to create student ensemble concerts in university settings.

Ms. Conant is interested in intersections of music and language. She has a B.A. in Classics (Latin and Greek), has worked as an interpreter in Haitian Creole, and has taught both music and language classes in Italian. She is especially interested in the Gbe languages of Ghana, Togo, and Benin. She has given talks on vugbe (drum language) and Fon and French Adjogbo poetry at Harvard University and in Europe.

Ms. Conant has led ensemble courses at Stanford University, Brandeis University, and Stony Brook University (SUNY). She has been invited as a guest instructor at New England Conservatory, Smith College, Berklee School of Music, the Conservatorio Cherubini in Florence (Italy), Johannes Gutenberg University (Germany) and has taught summer workshops at chamber music camps including Strings at Smith, Point Counterpoint, and Greenwood Summer Music Camp. She collaborates with Nani Agbeli at the Bang on A Can Summer Music Festival at MASS MoCA in North Adams, MA.

In her previous work in education research, Ms. Conant co-authored a much-cited paper proposing guiding principles for fostering productive disciplinary engagement in classrooms (Cognition and Instruction, Vol. 20, No. 4 (2002), pp. 399-483). At Mount Holyoke, her classes are known for high levels of productive musical engagement.

Areas of Expertise

Ethnomusicology; African music


  • M.A. in Ethnomusicology, Tufts University
  • B.A., Wesleyan University


Recent Campus News

Classes from Mount Holyoke and the Five College West African Music Ensemble joyfully performed together, featuring drums, dance and music.

Mount Holyoke’s Michael Ofori has teamed with director of the Five College West African Music Ensemble and guest artists to sing, dance, drum and perform.