Sekou Sundiata 1948-2007 Sekou Sundiata, a poet and performance artist whose work explored slavery, subjugation and the tension between personal and national identity, especially as they inform the black experience in America, died last Wednesday in Valhalla, N.Y. He was 58 and lived in Brooklyn. The cause was heart failure, said his producer, Ann Rosenthal. At his death, Mr. Sundiata was a professor in the writing program of Eugene Lang College of New School University. Mr. Sundiata’s art, which defied easy classification, ranged from poems performed in the style of an oral epic to musical, dance and dramatic works infused with jazz, blues, funk and Afro-Caribbean rhythms. In general, as he once said in a television interview, it entailed “the whole idea of text and noise, cadences and pauses.” His work was performed widely throughout the United States and abroad, staged by distinguished organizations like the Brooklyn Academy of Music and the Spoleto Festival U.S.A. Among Mr. Sundiata’s most recent works was “the 51st (dream) state,” an interlaced tapestry of poetry, music, dance and videotaped interviews that explores what it means to be an American in the wake of 9/11. Check out his Complete Bio at: MultiArts Projects & Productions (MAPP) "Brother Sekou inspired so many to believe that the arts and storytelling could lead to dialogue rather than diatribe. I’m sorry this gifted brother is no longer with us but his words and ideas live on."