Free Kwanzaa celebration headlines Doug E. Fresh

Doug E. Fresh performs during the fourth annual “VH1 Hip Hop Honors” in New York.
Associated Press / Jason DeCrow, File

The 37th annual Kwanzaa cultural festival of African and African-American heritage held annually at the American Museum of Natural History will be held Dec. 27 and headlines rapper Doug E. Fresh.

Co-presented by Community Works and New Heritage Theater Group, the theme of this year’s presentation — “Kwanzaa 20115: Energize,

Rejoice,” will unite guests to experience the annual attraction that celebrates the first fruits and the African tradition adopted by Dr. Maulanga Karenga last century as an African American tradition to emulate.

Slated to begin at noon, the celebration will open with a performance by the acclaimed “world’s greatest entertainer” who will exhibit his throat-exercising music style that has earned him the title of ‘human beat-box.’

A Caribbean native and Harlem resident, Fresh will take the stage at noon and has invited reggae rapper Vicious, DJs Barry B and Will Chill to join him during the spectacular.

Linda Humes, artistic director of Yaffa Cultural Arts with master drummers Sanga of the Valley and LeeAnet Noble and the Harlem School of the Arts Legacy Ensemble will also provide a joyous holiday presentation that celebrates the African roots to the African-American community.

Popular for promoting the holiday’s seven universal principles known as the Nguzo Saba – Umoja, Unity – Kujichagulia, self determination, Ujima, collective work and responsibility — Ujaama, cooperative economics — Nia, purpose, Kuumba, creativity, and Imani, faith — the holiday presentation is primarily based on the on those seven guiding principles — one for each day of the observance, and is celebrated from Dec. 26 to Jan. 1.

At the museum, the festivities will also offer an international Kwanzaa marketplace organized by the Harlem Alliance. There, a myriad of one-of-a kind handmade items will be available for purchase.

In addition, a screening of the documentary “The Black Candle” A Kwanza Celebration” will begin at 4:30 pm. This showing will be followed by a musical tribute to the film’s narrator Dr. Maya Angelou. Afterwards a question and answer segment will feature discussions with Jamilah Lemieux, senior editor of Ebony Magazine and MK Asante, the award-winning filmmaker that will address the making of the landmark film.

The AMNH is located at 79th St. & Central Park West.

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