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Arts & Theater

May, 2015

Signed by Atlantic, Kranium ready to explode

Music: https://youtu.be/OxuDYFAKB7gMany artists dream of earning mainstream success, and for Jamaican dancehall sensation Kranium, inking a deal with Atlantic Records is delicious icing on a very hard-earned cake. Comment.

Bahia: The Black Side Of Brazil Presents ‘African Rhythm, African Roots’

Arts & Theater: An un-objective, hearty and gracious “thank you” must be extended to the community’s own Baba Charles “Chuck” Davis who, after 38 years of annual DanceAfrica presentations, is passing the torch of artistic director to an heir. Comment.

DanceAfrica 2015 at BAM

Arts & Theater: When the weather turns, and we start getting warm sunny days consistently, we know it’s that time again, DanceAfrica time. Dancers in their flowing colorful costumes will be floating across the stage at BAM. The rhythms of the drums are infectious and will get you moving whether you are sitting or standing. The outdoor African style market place you’ve been waiting for all winter will be set up along Ashland Place on the side of BAM and in its parking lot across the street. We get to see and patronize merchants that only come to town for this event, as well as the familiar merchants we see at street fairs and other festivals. DanceAfrica opens the season, as always with swag, and celebration, featuring dance, music, film, and community events. Comment.

Annual Haitian Flag Day celebration

Music: May is a month full of celebrations and aside from high school proms and graduations, it is also Haiti Heritage Month. Comment.

Get into the hype with Majah Hype

Music: All things that are different boil down to expose that they are very much the same. In the Caribbean, there is a celebration of the differences in language, slang, food and even music but there is a thread undeniably connecting the people of Jamaica to Trinidad and beyond. Comment.

New York celebrates African cinema

Arts & Theater: A town hall African artist salon at the Greene Performance Space kicked off the upcoming 22nd edition of the African Film Festival New York (NYAFF). Comment.

The Artivist Rises

Arts & Theater: The Artivist Rises, a group art exhibition at 1199 SEIU Bread and Roses Gallery, located at 310 West 43rd St., presented by African Voices Magazine, Carolyn A. Butts, founder / publisher and Derick Cross, art director. The exhibition features 18 artists, whose common goal is conscious raising, the thread, which runs through the exhibit and ties the work together. It is a mixed media show with paintings, prints, collages, quilts and photographs. Comment.

April, 2015

Jazz, Arts Festival

Music: An eclectic billing of performers from the Caribbean and the United States combine for 11 nights of revelry during the 24th annual staging of the St. Lucia Jazz & Arts Festival from April 30 to May 10. Comment.

Jazz Day

Music: The genius of trumpeter Miles Davis will be resounded and echoed April 30, when International Jazz Day heralds one of the greatest musicians of the genre. Comment.

Children’s Carnival Costume workshop

Arts & Theater: The West Indian American Day Carnival Association (WIADCA) will be holding its annual Children’s Carnival Costume Construction & Design Workshops from Saturday May 9 to June 20. Comment.

The Colored Museum

Arts & Theater: Harlem School of the Arts (HSA) Theatre Department presents “The Colored Museum” written by George C. Wolfe directed by Alfred Preisser. “The Colored Museum” takes the audience on a journey through the Black American experience. Comment.

BRAZILIAN RHYTHMS

Arts & Theater: DanceAfrica, the nation’s largest African dance festival, returns to BAM for the 38th year with its traditional Memorial Day weekend extravaganza of dance, music, film, and community events from May 22 - 25. Comment.

For the love of fabric with Lisa Shepard Stewart

Arts & Theater: From far and near, quilt lovers and others who love textile arts immersed themselves in the artistry of The Urban Inspirations Quilt Show 2015. Sponsored by the Empire Quilters Guild, one the many NYC area quilters’ organizations, the two-day show was held at FIT in late March. Comment.

LATINO DANCE

Arts & Theater: Ballet Hispanico, recognized as the nation’s leading Latino dance organization since 1970, returns to the Joyce Theater from April 14-26, 2015 with 15 performances featuring five dynamic programs. Comment.

March, 2015

AILEY RETURNS TO LINCOLN

Arts & Theater: Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater, beloved as one of the world’s most popular dance companies, will return to Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts for a two-week 15-performance engagement at the David H. Koch Theater June 10 – 21, 2015. Comment.

Classical Theatre celebrates 15th anniversary

Arts & Theater: The Classical Theatre of Harlem (CTH) (Ty Jones, producing artistic director; David Roberts, managing director) proudly announces plans for its landmark 2015 season. The Harlem-based American theatre company will present its 15th Anniversary Celebration and Benefit Concert this spring, featuring songs from the musical “Witness Uganda,” winner of the American Academy of Arts and Letters 2014 Richard Rodgers Production Award for Musical Theater; a free summer production of William Shakespeare’s The Tempest; and the winter holiday world premiere of a new CTH-commissioned musical, “The First Noel.” Comment.

Slave Girl

Arts & Theater: A new stage adaptation of Harriet Jacobs’ 1861 autobiography, “Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl” will be performed at 7:30 p.m., Tuesday, March 24, 2015 in the Recital Hall, Performing Arts Center on the University at Albany’s uptown campus. Comment.

TALLEST TREE

Arts & Theater: Daniel Beaty gives a tour-de-force performance, playing up to 40 characters in “The Tallest Tree in the Forest,” a solo play, which he also wrote. It tells the life story of Paul Robeson, a towering figure among our nation’s prominent African-Americans. Renowned director Moisés Kaufman returns to BAM (The Laramie Project, 2013 Winter/Spring) to direct this show which has delighted and enlightened audiences from Kansas City, to LA, La Jolla, and Washington, DC. Comment.

Charity quilts go to region’s agencies

Arts & Theater: In an atmosphere of creativity, the energy was infectious in the main hall, also the sanctuary, of Manhattan’s Church of Holy Apostles. While the judging for the Empire Quilters bi-annual group show taking place March 28 and 29 at FIT was going on in a side room, clusters of women positioned themselves around circular tables amiably chatting, yet completely focused. Comment.

DANCE TREAT

Arts & Theater: “Kumina” and other island dance favorites are among treats programmed into a two-day repertoire billed for the 60th anniversary season at Brooklyn Center of the Performing Arts at Brooklyn College when the National Dance Theater Company of Jamaica (NDTC) return here. Comment.

Postage stamp to honor ‘Miss Calypso’ Forever

Arts & Theater: It is Women’s History Month and a phenomenal woman is being memorialized when spring breaks — less than a year after her death. First acclaimed as Miss Calypso — prior to becoming the well-known Maya Angelou — she was known by a moniker that lauds the Caribbean and its music. Comment.

February, 2015

Haitian and Dominicans artists collaborate

Arts & Theater: Twenty-seven artists of Dominican and Haitian-heritage together are collaborating in what seems impossible on the island of Hispaniola itself. Comment.

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READY FOR MASH

Arts & Theater: New York mas band “Honest Illusions” is ready to capture the crown in the medium band category when revelers take to the streets of Georgetown to celebrate Guyana’s 45th Republic Anniversary and Mashramani Parade on Feb. 23. Comment.

Colorful Indian culture celebrated at the UN

Arts & Theater: A colorful spectacle of the rich Indian culture, mesmerized guests on Friday, Feb. 6, at the United Nations in New York City, where music, dance and national fare were celebrated with enjoyment. Comment.

LATIN DANCE FEST

Arts & Theater: New York City Center will present “A Bailar: Dance at the Center,” a three-week Latin dance festival featuring three acclaimed dance companies from Cuba, Argentina and Spain, running Feb. 18 – March 7, 2015. Comment.

‘Adam’ spotlights Bimini, Bahamas

Arts & Theater: Few plays ever shine a spotlight on the Caribbean except to marvel at the pristine beaches, eternal sunshine and soulful music that endears carnival and revelry. Comment.

Robert Blackburn’s ‘Passages’

Arts & Theater: “We show Black History all the time,” said Corrine Jennings director of Wilmer Jennings Gallery. Through March, selections from the master printmaker “Robert (Bob) Blackburn: Passages” is on exhibition at the Wilmer Jennings Gallery, 219 E. 2nd St., a satellite space of Kenkeleba House. Comment.

Griffith tells her story in ‘Demerara Gold’

Arts & Theater: Fresh off a successful performance in Georgetown, Guyana, Ingrid Griffith’s phenomenal one-woman satirical drama - “Demerara Gold” will give an audience a belly-full of laughs when she comes to Brooklyn’s St. Gabriel’s Episcopal Church at 331 Hawthorne St., on Feb, 21. Show time is 3:00 p.m. Comment.

DIANA ROSS WOWS CROWD

Music: Diana Ross probably isn’t used to being the opening act. The soul legend captivated a sold-out crowd at the grand reopening of the Kings Theatre in Flatbush on Tuesday night, but the main attraction was the majestic and painstakingly restored venue. Comment.

January, 2015

Kings Theatre re-opens in Flatbush

Arts & Theater: Brooklyn Councilman Dr. Mathieu Eugene last week joined top city officials at the re-opening of Kings Theatre in Flatbush, Brooklyn. Comment.

MISS JAMAICA STANDS PROUD

Fashion: “Old pirates, yes they rob I” — Bob Marley. Some Jamaicans are voicing Bob Marley’s “Redemption Song” to express their ire about Miss Jamaica’s fourth-runner up position in the recent Miss Universe beauty pageant. Comment.

Lunar New Year Celebration

Arts & Theater: Brooklyn Center for the Performing Arts at Brooklyn College continues its 60th Anniversary Season, once again partnering with Nai-Ni Chen Dance Company for its second annual Lunar New Year Celebration, on Sunday, Jan. 25, 2015 at 3:00 p.m. Tickets are $25 for adults and $12.50 for children (ages 12 and under) and can be purchased at BrooklynCenter.org or by calling the box office at 718-951-4500 (Tue-Sat, 1:00 p.m. - 6:00 p.m.). Comment.

World Premiere of Ados at BAM

Arts & Theater: Douglas Dunn & Dancers presents the World Premiere of Aidos at Brooklyn Academy of Music, BAM Fisher, 321 Ashland Place, Brooklyn, NY, from Feb. 11-15, 2015. Performances from Wednesday to Saturday at 8:00 p.m and Saturday and Sunday at 3:00 p.m. Comment.

LADYSMITH BLACK MAMBAZO

Arts & Theater: Brooklyn Center for the Performing Arts at Brooklyn College continues its 60th Anniversary Season with an evening of joyous and uplifting music by South Africa’s Grammy Award-winning Ladysmith Black Mambazo on Saturday, Jan. 31, 2015 at 8:00 p.m. Comment.

‘Nesta’s Rock’ Musical to Rock The Rock

Music: A musical tribute to reggae icon Robert Nesta Marley is slated to run from Jan. 9 to Jan. 22 at the University of the West Indies in Kingston, Jamaica. Comment.

CREOLE SPIRIT

Arts & Theater: UNESCO is recognizing gwoka as an integral part of Guadeloupean identity in its 2015 world heritage designations. The honor is notable because it was awarded for its intangible qualities. The designation usually is attached to site of architectural importance or natural wonders. Comment.