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December, 2017

Jamaican actress lands role in new musical

Arts & Theater: She’s on her way up. Jamaican American theater actress Dianne Dixon landed a role in the debut off-Broadway musical show “Falling in Love With Mr. Dellamort,” at the Slipper Room in Manhattan starting Dec. 6. In the show, Dixon takes on a role vastly different from her off-stage personality, and the other parts she has done in mostly Caribbean-centric theater, she said. Comment

Old Time Grand Market brings Caribbean-style Christmas to Canarsie

Arts & Theater: It’s a home away from home for the holidays. The fifth annual Old Time Grand Market returns this year, and it is coming to Brooklyn for the first time, at the Holy Family Church in Canarsie on Dec. 10. The formerly Queens-based festival is a yearly event that boasts of recreating Caribbean-style holiday traditions to soothe the longing for home during a time where people are celebrating their cultural customs, said the organizer. Comment



Music: Several members of the Caribbean community on Thanksgiving Saturday joined the United Vincie Cultural Group of Brooklyn (UVCGB) in participating in the group’s annual Christmas Serenade at the Fellowship Hall of the Miracle Temple Ministries in the Brownville section of Brooklyn. Comment

November, 2017

Bomba-tastic Christmas show

Bomba-tastic Christmas show

Music: A group of intergenerational musicians and dancers are set to perform a Puerto Rican style Christmas show at the Brooklyn Center for Performing Arts on Dec. 10. The East-Harlem based band Los Pleneros de la 21, is presenting “Christmas in El Barrio,” — the band’s take on traditional Puerto Rican music with a New York twist. The universal joy the band members plan on sparking will be loved by everyone, said the group’s founder. Comment
Arts & Theater: Philadelphia-based Vincentian community activist James Cordice electrified a sold-out audience at a Garifuna Settlement Day celebration in Fairfax, VA on Nov. 4 in retracing the Garifuna pilgrimage. Comments (2)

Guyanese artists explore migration, culture in Harlem exhibition

Arts & Theater: Guyanese art enthusiasts and friends turned out on Nov.17, to celebrate “Liminal Space” an exhibition on view at the Caribbean Cultural Center African Diaspora Institute (CCCADI), 120 E 125 St., in Harlem, New York, which explores migration, culture and displacement from 16 Guyanese artists’ point of view. The show ends on Nov. 30. Comment


Music: Haitian educators embracing their cultural background with others filled Kinanm Lounge on a cold Saturday night for the warmest vibes, immersed in an evening of Haitian musical heritage. Comment

Grooving at a discount

Grooving at a discount

Arts & Theater: This studio got its groove back! A dance center specializing in African-influenced movement is reopening inside a Bedford-Stuyvesant cultural complex on Nov. 11, following its honchos’ two-year search for a new home after being evicted from their old Fort Greene space, which its landlord sold to a luxury high-rise developer. Comment

Carnival costume workshop teaches design skills

Fashion: It’s a crash course on carnival design. A new workshop is going to teach classes on constructing carnival costumes this weekend. The Carnival Costume Construction and Master Wire Bending workshop starting on Nov. 4, is hoping to show those interested on how carnival’s biggest attraction is created. Comment

‘Frightful fun’ at Kings County

Arts & Theater: NYC Health + Hospitals/Kings County says its pediatric patients enjoyed a “frightfully fun” Halloween. The sprawling hospital in the epicenter of the Caribbean community in Brooklyn said on Wednesday that its Pediatric Department staff and Marsha Page, a New York Emmy nominated, makeup artist and beauty expert “made sure some of the hospital’s youngest patients enjoyed Halloween.” Comment

October, 2017

Arts & Theater: Welcoming the community with art. The Diaspora Community Services celebrated the opening of their new Crown Heights location with an art exhibit on Oct. 26. The exhibit titled “Lakay,” which is Haitian Creole for: the home, uses the work from four artists to make the center feel much like a second home for its visitors, said the CEO of the center. Comment

Police flavored entertainment

Music: Pamella Ferrari-Easter, chairperson of the Entertainment Committee of the Brooklyn-based St. Vincent and the Grenadines Ex-Police Association, USA, Inc., said that her group was on “a new high” after its inaugural “Evening of Entertainment” at the Friends of Crown Heights Educational Center in Brooklyn. Comment
Arts & Theater: They’re fighting gentrification with culture. An East New York cultural organization is taking a stand to preserve its culture in their rapidly revitalized neighborhood with community and family-oriented programming. ARTs East New York (AENY) is hosting musical and engaging events for residents to commune and converse about relevant issues because the neighborhood can greatly benefit from these activities, said one of the organizers. Comment
Music: A beaming Ellen Kodadek, executive and artistic director of Flushing Town Hall grabbed some video shots with her phone of the exuberant crowd dancing to Umalali and The Garifuna Collective at a recent performance in the Town Hall. If engagement with the community — the goal of the Global Arts for a Global Community performance series — is the measure of success, then this evening was triumphant. Comments (1)

Artist uses skill for Puerto Rico relief

Arts & Theater: An art of kindness. A Brooklyn artist is using his talent to raise awareness and funds for Puerto Rico’s post-hurricane relief efforts. Commonly known by his social media handle “Subway Doodle,” Ben Rubin, the artist behind the popular Instagram page, will be donating all funds for his campaign’s artwork titled “Helping Hands.” Comment

Jamaican musical premieres in US capital

Arts & Theater: The Jamaican musical ‘Welcome to America’ premieres at the Cramton Auditorium, Howard University in US Capital on Saturday, Oct. 28. Jamaican born, New York based author Karl O’ Brian Williams who has had his own share of immigration issues earlier this year, deals with many of the issues in his new Jamaican musical. Comment

Guyanese artist show works in Times Square Port Authority

Arts & Theater: Guyanese-born artist, Carl F. Anderson stood proudly to be photographed by Spencer Richards, in front of his 25-piece collection of contemporary paintings, now on display at the Port Authority building in Times Square, New York City, until Oct. 31, 2017. Comment

Hair Tales

Arts & Theater: It’s more than just hair. At the inaugural Hair Nation Expo in Queens on Oct. 9, Connecticut-based playwright Alicia Thompson will be debuting her play surrounding stories about black women and their hair at the Black Spectrum Theatre. In her one-woman play “I Am My Hair,” a counter spin to the popular song by soul artist India Arie, Thompson reflects on how several girls and women perceive their hair and overall themselves, while examining the environments they live in and the reasonings behind their choices, said Thompson. Comment

September, 2017

Arts & Theater: Seeing the other side of criminal justice. A former correctional facility mentor is performing her one-woman show analyzing the lives of the incarcerated at the National Black Theatre now through Oct. 1. Playwright Liza Jessie Peterson takes on several characters in “The Peculiar Patriot,” to explore conversations close friends and relatives have with imprisoned people they care about. Having worked at Rikers Island for more than 20 years with adolescents, she draws from her own experience and observations from New York’s prison system, said Peterson. Comment

Celebrating Brooklyn through photography

Celebrating Brooklyn through photography

Arts & Theater: The images in the expansive gallery just behind BRIC’s lobby performance space pays tribute to its home borough with the exhibition “Brooklyn Photographs” by 11 photographers. Comment

Vincentian cultural group honors icon

Music: The United Vincie Cultural Group of Brooklyn (UVCGB) on Saturday honored the cultural figure whose songs it has been using during its cultural performances in the past 14 years. Comment


Music: Flushing Town Hall has launched its fall season with something for everybody and for all ages. Latin roots and Cuban rhythms (Sept. 22), Garifuna music from Belize, Honduras and Guatemala (Oct. 6), Afro-Venezuelan rhythms and dance (Oct. 21), Mexican folk dances (Dec. 3), and rhythms and dance movements from the Ivory Coast (Dec. 9) are on the schedule of the Flushing Town Hall fall lineup. Comment

‘Mother of Jamaican culture’ to be honored

Arts & Theater: While citizens in this hemisphere are reconsidering heroes and monuments, in Jamaica the government is moving forward to erect another statue to honor an outstanding citizen who many agree has contributed to nation building. Comments (1)

Back to life: Painter revives carnival with artwork

Arts & Theater: Carnival is coming back to life. A Florida-based artist is showcasing his carnival-inspired artwork at Medgar Evers College library through Sept. 22. The second annual “Art of Carnival” exhibit is going to have 23 paintings on display — all based on images that Trinidadian-born artist Weldon Ryan took at various carnivals across the country. With the West Indian Day parade over until next year, he is keeping the spirit of the joyous celebration alive in his life-like representations of it — something not often found in Caribbean art. Comment
Arts & Theater: New York Police Department (NYPD) and other officials say Caribbean J’Ouvert in Brooklyn has been spared this year the violence that has marred the festival in recent years. Comment

Restrained revelry: Heightened J’Ouvert security prevents fatalities, changes atmosphere

Arts & Theater: It was the dawn of a new J’Ouvert. Comment

Junior costume bands revel like pros

Arts & Theater: Once again, junior revelers showed their carnival prowess, shaking their costume tails, frames, and frills, to light up the streets of Crown Heights during a stirring presentation on Saturday, Sept. 2, that began the 50-year festivities of the West Indian American Day Carnival Association. Comment
Arts & Theater: Guyana’s Minister of Natural Resources, Semona Broomes joined a Guyanese contingent on Eastern Parkway on Monday, Sept. 4 and waved the Golden Arrowhead flag with nationals to the 50th Anniversary of the Caribbean American Day Carnival Association (WIADCA). Comment
Arts & Theater: For at least the third consecutive year, revelers, masqueraders and millions of spectators converged in picture-perfect weather on Brooklyn’s Eastern Parkway on Labor Day for the 50th annual celebration of the West Indian American Day Carnival Parade. Comment

Vincy artist Kenroy Dolly makes it big

Arts & Theater: After discovering his talent in the late 1960s while living in St. Vincent and the Grenadines, Vincentian-born artist Kenroy Dolly has made it big internationally. Comments (1)

Carifesta or ‘Carifiasco’

Arts & Theater: Carifesta 13 wound up with a massive party at Kensington Oval last weekend but the jollification for the finale might have served to hide areas of discontent at its shortcomings that some cultural performers and would-be viewers felt. Comment

50 years of NY Caribbean Carnival in full swing

Arts & Theater: The Brooklyn-based West Indian American Day Carnival Association (WIADCA) began its 50th Annual New York Caribbean Carnival Week (NYCCW) on Thursday with “Reggae Unda Di Stars.” Comment


Arts & Theater: Showing off your culture to an audience of mainly locals who live it daily and to a set of visitors who have been experiencing this style of living over the past weeks and days is at anytime a challenge. Comment

Grenadians have fun in Crown Heights

Music: A day for the Isle of Spice! Thousands came out to celebrate their heritage at the ninth annual Grenada Day celebration in Crown Heights on Aug. 27. Grenadian-Americans flocked to the Old Boys and Girls High School field to spend a day extolling their pride and partaking in their culture, and it was one of the biggest gatherings yet, said Grenada’s consul general to New York. Comment

August, 2017

Arts & Theater: Caribbean carnival was officially established on Lenox Avenue in Harlem by Trinidadian Jessie Wardell and friends in the mid-1940’s, according to the West Indian America Day Carnival Association (WIADCA). Comment

‘Feel Da Vibes’ on Labor Day

Arts & Theater: As it celebrates its 11th year participating in the West Indian American Day Carnival Parade on Brooklyn’s Eastern Parkway, the Bronx-based DJ Morrishaw Productions says it’s feeling “Da Vibes.” Comment

Inaugural Miss WIADCA pageant to crown queen

Fashion: The search to find Miss WIADCA 2017 is on and will end on Sept. 23 with the coronation of the first monarch to rule a carnival kingdom. Comments (1)

An af-fair to remember

An af-fair to remember

Arts & Theater: These seniors have the carnival spirit! About 80 old-timers paraded in colorful costumes at a Crown Heights nursing home’s celebration of the popular Caribbean festival on Aug. 24, ahead of next week’s West Indian American Day Parade. Comment

Indian culture, CARIFESTA, UNC, PP & PNM

Arts & Theater: This commentary is about the politics of national identity and the United National Congress (UNC), People’s Partnership (PP) and People’s National Movement (PNM) governments in Trinidad and Tobago. It focuses on East Indian (Indo-Trinidadian) culture in the Caribbean Festival of Arts (CARIFESTA). Comment

Kagie 22 presents ‘Haiti Royalty’

Arts & Theater: Three sections will display “Haiti Royalty” in Kagie 22’s production this Labor Day Carnival. Comment

Suga Candy Mas is ‘Coming to America’ for Labor Day

Arts & Theater: With the adoption of the movie title starring Eddie Murphy, the three-year-old Suga Candy Mas is “Coming to America” for the West Indian American Day Carnival Parade on Brooklyn’s Eastern Parkway on Labor Day. Comment

Dingolay displays ‘Royalty’

Arts & Theater: In portraying “Royalty” in this year’s West Indian American Day Carnival Parade, Dingolay hopes to snatch the title in the Medium Band category. Comment

‘The Mas in Fashion’ Parade for Labor Day

Arts & Theater: Plans are underway for the staging of a history-making presentation, as YET SHE RISE, INC, in association with the Brooklyn-based JLC PRoductions, LLC for CAFE - Caribbean American Fashion Exchange and the World Fashion Festival Organization, presents “The Mas in Fashion — A Fashion Parade Against Human Trafficking” on Labor Day during the New York Caribbean Carnival Parade. Comment

Increased security measures for J’Ouvert

Arts & Theater: New York City officials and J’Ouvert organizers on Monday announced enhanced parade security measures for the 2017 Caribbean J’Ouvert Celebration, which takes place on Monday, Sept. 4 at 6 am in the Crown Heights section of Brooklyn. Comment

Guyanese group endorses One Destiny Mas Band

Arts & Theater: The Brooklyn-based Caribbean Guyana Institute for Democracy (CGID) on Wednesday announced a partnership and public relations initiative in support of the Guyanese-led “One Destiny Mas Band.” Comment

Tots show their artwork

Tots show their artwork

Arts & Theater: A youthful spin to art. About a dozen tots from MV Kiddies Town Kid Daycare presented their creative artwork at their very own art exhibit in Flatlands on Aug. 18. The display titled “Summer Exhibit,” compiled various types of drawn and crafty pieces that the kids created. The youngins were so thrilled with their art show that they were eager to show off what they created, said the daycare assistant director. Comment


Arts & Theater: The Vincentians came with a purpose and wasted no time taking over the previously serene Bajan night air by unleashing a power source of lively infectious music and dancing that rocked the Carifesta crowd Monday night. Comment

Guyanese celebrate WIADCA at 50

Arts & Theater: Guyana Consul General to New York, Barbara Atherley is calling on all Guyanese across America to come out in their numbers on Labor Day Monday, to celebrate and honor the 50th Anniversary of the West Indian American Day Carnival Association (WIADCA). Comment

Kaios International looks at ‘Time Machine, Then, Now and Future’

Arts & Theater: As it participates for the 17th consecutive year in the West Indian American Day Carnival Parade on Brooklyn’s Eastern Parkway, Kaios International Mas Band is looking at “Time Machine, Then, Now and Future.” Comment
Music: Call it a festive recalling of history. Several Caribbean-American cultural and dance groups performed the music and dances of their cultures for a day of celebrating the richness of the pre-dawn celebration J’ouvert, at Brooklyn Central Library in Prospect Heights on Aug. 19. Comment
Arts & Theater: There’s a carnival in the game house. A new exhibit honoring one of the most popular aspects of Caribbean culture opened at Resorts World Casino in South Ozone on Aug. 9. The photographic exhibit titled “Carnival in the City,” will be on display at the casino until Sept. 3, showing off the glitz and color of photos from one of the city’s most festive cultural events. Comment

WIADCA launches 50th anniversary of Caribbean Carnival Week

Arts & Theater: The colors, pageantry and sound of Caribbean Carnival were fully on display last Thursday, as the West Indian American Day Carnival Association (WIADCA) launched its 50th anniversary celebration of Caribbean Carnival Week in New York. Comment
Arts & Theater: A Trinidadian Red Devil, a marauding Guyanese tiger, flouncing Bermudians, and Barbadian stilt walkers were among the 1,500 artists and performers who pranced and danced their way from Queen’s Park to Kensington Oval Sunday to declare open the 13th Caribbean Festival of Creative Arts. Comment
Arts & Theater: Stephen, the son of Robert Nesta and Rita Marley is scheduled to make an appearance on the inaugural evening of the 50th anniversary celebration of the West Indian American Day Carnival Association’s annual five-day tribute to Caribbean culture by adding to the line-up of “Reggae Unda Di Stars” with acceptance of a posthumous special tribute to his famous father. Comments (1)

Carican Costumes tells ‘Little History of Carnival’

Arts & Theater: Trinidadian mas designer and producer Pat Nurse will be taking her costume-designing workshops a little further by telling a “Little History of Carnival” in this year’s production for the West Indian American Day Carnival Parade. Comment

Rhythm International catches ‘5 Elements’

Arts & Theater: With over 20 years of producing mas, Trinidadian Anton Reynolds says his mas band, Rhythm Catcher International, catches “5 Elements” for Labor Day. Comment
Arts & Theater: Claiming that “Caribbean Sickness” is too prevalent, Trinidadian Kenneth Antoine says that it is befitting that he so names this year’s Labor Day production. Comment

Barbados Crop Over not so usual

Arts & Theater: Barbados wrapped up another Crop Over festival with organisers beaming at the success to which the island has become accustomed, but what people are now left to grapple with is one souring incident of gun violence and death. Comment

Actor Alejandro Santoni tapped in new television projects

Arts & Theater: He’s riding the main stage. Puerto-Rican American actor Alejandro Santoni came to New York almost a decade ago to pursue his acting career. He was met with some early struggles, but now the actor is on his way to create an even bigger name for himself and is celebrating his three new roles on television and in film, including popular city-based web series and Emmy Award winning show, “We Are New York.” Comment
Arts & Theater: Eleven masquerade bands, more than 10,000 costumed revelers, thousands of other revelers and over a million people converged on Toronto’s Lakeshore Boulevard last Saturday for the city’s 50th grand Caribbean carnival. Comment

Messiah International Mas is ‘Bejeweled’ for Labor Day

Arts & Theater: With its focus on the Roman Empire’s relationship with “certain gemstones,” the Brooklyn-based Messiah International Mas Band will be “Bejeweled” in this year’s Labor Day production. Comment


Arts & Theater: They’re making their big apple debut. The Dominican National Company of Contemporary Dance is going to perform their first New York performance at the Battery Dance Festival on Aug. 14 and 16. Comment

Skimpiness on Kadooment

Skimpiness on Kadooment

Arts & Theater: A first timer pranced away with the top design prizes in Grand Kadooment Monday when thousands of Barbadians thronged the streets to jump and dance in brightly coloured large and really tiny costumes in the culmination of Crop Over. Comment

Go Untamed! for J’ouvert 2017

Arts & Theater: After an excitingly successful band launch last month, Roy Pierre & Associates, 16-time J’ouvert winners, the carnival group that in 2016 brought you the revolutionary production “Havana Nights,” is this year inviting revellers to be part of “UNTAMED!,” an irreverent, unconventional presentation for J’ouvert 2017. Comment

Ready for a ‘Rhythm and Rhyme’ education

Arts & Theater: Piggybacking on last year’s “Jump for Education” by the Brooklyn-based Friends of Crown Heights Educational Centers, Mas Productions Unlimited will this year present during the West Indian American Day Carnival Parade, “Education in Rhythm and Rhyme,” inspired by its sponsor, Friends of Crown Heights Educational Center. Comment

Boom Mas again ‘Escape(s) to Rio’

Arts & Theater: While last year’s Summer Olympics have come and gone in Rio de Janeiro in Brazil, Brooklyn’s Boom Mas, LLC is again “Escap(ing) to Rio” for carnival. Comment

The masters dominate Soca Royale

Music: Veterans ruled the finals in last Sunday’s Barbados Soca Royale as Lil Rick romped home with his sixth Party Monarch delivering his lively piece ‘Energy’, and Red Plastic Bag brought waves to the Bush Park crowd to take the Soca Monarch for the second time with ‘Boat Ride’. Comment

Brooklyn Children’s Museum appoints Trinidadian VP

Arts & Theater: A new type of leadership. The Brooklyn Children’s Museum recently appointed a Caribbean American for a leadership position at the institution. Museum educator Daniela Fifi is the new vice president of programs and education, and will be in charge of overseeing the museum’s approach of instructional activities. The new post is going to allow Fifi to fulfill her passion in a neighborhood she feels culturally tied to, she said. Comment

‘Aloha’ from Greenz United

Arts & Theater: After most masqueraders participate in the preceding Grenada Carnival, with “Spice and everything that’s nice,” Greenz United will be greeting them with “Aloha” on Brooklyn’s Eastern Parkway for this year’s West Indian American Day Carnival Parade. Comment

July, 2017

Two weekends non-stop Crop Over partying

Arts & Theater: Thanks to the peculiarity of the 2017 calendar Barbadians are enjoying an extended Crop Over season that promises two weekends of musical competitions coupled with intense partying whereas there is usually one weekend of mass revelry. Comment

D’Midas readies for the Parkway with ‘Glitz and Glamour’

Arts & Theater: In its annual quest, D’Midas International New York mas band hopes to place in the top three for medium-sized bands in the West Indian American Day Carnival Parade. Comment

Marlon Cole debuts Off Broadway play ‘Choices & Consequences’

Arts & Theater: Marlon Orlando Cole, who traces his roots to Jamaica, is on cloud nine after receiving rave reviews for this debut Off Broadway play “Choices & Consequences,” on stage until July 29. Comment
Arts & Theater: Founder and President of the Jersey City West Indian Caribbean American Carnival Association Inc., (JCWICACAI), Cheryl DB Murphy said with 1.5 million West Indians in the metro area, the streets of Jersey City will come alive with colorful costumes and revelry when the parade takes to the streets on Saturday, July 22. Comment
Music: Art for all. Thousands of art enthusiasts packed the 46th International African Arts Festival at Commodore Barry Park in Fort Greene on July 3. The annual festival celebrating the music and artistry of the African Diaspora attracts many people, particularly frequent visitors who always attend every year, and come to showcase their work, said one woman. Comment


Arts & Theater: Ready, set, en garde! A Harlem theater company will be playing their adaption of the popular Alexandre Dumas action novel, “The Three Musketeers,” from July 11-30. The Classic Theatre of Harlem is having a free nightly outdoor showing of the classic play at Marcus Garvey Park. And in this revival, the company is not only bringing a favored story back into the spotlight, but is also honoring the literary work of a Caribbean man whose background is typically disregarded, said the artistic director of the company. Comment

Caribbean, New Orleans explore cultural links

Music: The New Orleans Center for the Gulf South helped highlight the links between the Caribbean and New Orleans during the annual US Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Southern Regional Research Center’s Caribbean Cultural Heritage Month in June, according to Tulane University. Comment
Arts & Theater: When the Wallach Art Gallery hosted its opening reception earlier this month, one felt they were walking through the remnants of a construction zone to get there. Comment

Hat tricks: Seniors design extravagant hats

Arts & Theater: These elders got style. About a dozen seniors showed off their elaborate hat designs at the Jonkuunu Hattitude Masquerade Show at the Ozone Senior Center on June 29. The old timers first learn about the extravagant Jamaican Christmas custom called Jonkunnu, and literally pull skills out of their hats to create intricately designed lids, which they were thrilled to model, said the organizer of the event. Comment
Music: Hundreds of people turned out to celebrate the end of Caribbean Heritage Month at Brooklyn Borough Hall on June 29. The indoor and outdoor festival turned the building’s vestibule and Columbus Park Plaza into a hub honoring Caribbean culture for a day-long event, featuring segments of island cuisine, a symposium and musical concert. Comment

June, 2017



Arts & Theater: Call it art imitating life. A Prospect-Lefferts Gardens dance school is reimagining the company’s displacement in their new stage play inspired by the Sister Act films, which will debut at Kings Theatre on June 25. AbunDance Academy of the Arts is presenting their project, “Sister Act, Abundantly.” Comment

Free boro-wide entertainment in City Parks

Music: One of the best bargains of the year comes every summer when City Parks announces its free, series of music, dance, films and theater. Already in full swing in many of the neighborhood parks in all five boroughs, the biggest and longest announced Brooklyn’s Celebrate Brooklyn Festival in Prospect Park. Comments (1)
Arts & Theater: The new off-Broadway musical, “The Church…A Hospital?” received such rave reviews after its Brooklyn preview, the producers have decided to do a second performance. Writer / producer / director John Andrews is pleased to announce that the play will have a reprise showing at the York College Performing Arts Center on Sunday, Aug. 6, 2017 at 5 pm. Comment

Town brawl! J’ouvert organizer criticizes pol at parade public safety meeting

Arts & Theater: She put him in line. Comment

Tribute to Afro-Cuban music diva

Music: The life of Afro-Cuban singer La Lupe, is going to be celebrated with a musical concert paying homage to her life at the City College Center for Performing Arts on June 9. Together City College, Pregones Theater, and the Caribbean Cultural Center African Diaspora Institute organized a series of events to celebrate the singer which will conclude with a concert. Because La Lupe was a trailblazer during a time when women were still restricted in the arts, she should be praised, said the founder of the Caribbean Cultural Center African Diaspora Institute. Comments (1)

‘Sweetee’ adds music to Theater Row

Arts & Theater: There’s music in the air and an abundance of melodic, harmonious rhythms onstage nightly at the Pershing Square Signature Center where “Sweetee” recently opened for a limited engagement until June 18. Comment

‘Daughters of the Mock’ witchy women

Arts & Theater: I took the L Train to First Avenue to get to Theatre 80 on St Mark’s Place where the Negro Ensemble Company is presenting playwright Judi Ann Mason’s play “Daughters of the Mock,” until June 10, 2017. Comment

Caribbean Cultural Theatre to present WordFest

Arts & Theater: E. Wayne McDonald, director of Caribbean Cultural Theatre has announced an impressive list of Caribbean authors who will headline their works, that the artists said would take patrons on a Journey of (Re)Discovery into Caribbean Literary Classics Old and New, during WorldFest, an afternoon-long literary event on Sunday 11, from 12 noon to 7 pm, at Bedford Stuyvesant Restoration Plaza, 1368 Fulton St., Brooklyn, New York. Comment
Arts & Theater: They’re back and with a new look. The Flatbush Ditmas Park-based cultural center Caribbeing House is open again after its winter hiatus. The center which officially re-opened in April, is also sporting a new look leaving its signature red color behind for a metallic gold. The change of color is a change of direction for the hub, and a commemoration of the West Indian American Day Parade’s 50th anniversary, said the executive director. Comment

Jamaican poet in Britain honored in South Africa

Arts & Theater: Linton Kwesi Johnson, Jamaica’s premier dub poet was recently honored with a doctorate in literature from a university in South Africa for his “inspiring political activism” and relentless dedication to his craft. Comment

May, 2017

Arts & Theater: Jamaica could easily claim the title of being reggae central this summer when the island marks 55 years of self rule. Comment

Vicitms of police violence: Playwright debuts play on injustice

Arts & Theater: The painful tale we all know. A new thought-provoking play documenting the horrors of police brutality and vigilantism is debuting at the National Black Theatre starting on May 31. “Kill Move Paradise” is a story that follows four men who meet the fate of extra-judicial or vigilante violence, mirroring major headlines following the deaths of black men. The play is a timely reminder of what is continually happening and sheds light on the aftermath, said the playwright. Comment


Arts & Theater: The dramatic-comedy play direct from Kingston, Jamaica, “Four Can’t Play,” starring Oliver Samuels with Ruth Ho Shing, Maylynne Lowe and Dennis Titus will make its United States premiere on Saturday, May 20, 8 pm at Brooklyn Center for the Performing Arts. Comment

Heritage and hair

Arts & Theater: Let’s talk hair. A play discussing some black lady hair struggles is debuting at the Black Lady Theatre on May 12. “Hair’itage the Play, The Journey of Sistahs and Their Hair,” follows six women dealing with the negative notions that come with their hair. The show not only identifies the varying perceptions associated with a black woman’s hairstyle but will also challenge them, said one actress in the play. Comment

Brooklyn artist creates vintage furniture from African textiles

Arts & Theater: Benga Akinnagbe is an American-born artist of Nigerian lineage, so it is not surprising that he sources some of the most beautiful prints from the continent of his ancestors, to fashion his Enitan Vintage furniture collection. Comment

Community event to focus on Haitian culture

Music: A fun community event for action. The third annual Lakay Se Lakay conference returns on May 7 in Crown Heights. The event puts Haitian culture at the forefront for a daylong meeting with musical and creative workshops, dance, art galleries, and a panel Comment
Arts & Theater: All shades of island comedy. A Queens-based theatre company is trying to create more visibility for Indo-Caribbeans in the media, and are premiering their new stage show to support this mission in June. Flat Tire Productions is crowdfunding for their five one-act play “Love Bites,” a Caribbean comedy presentation about love and relationships. Comments (1)

April, 2017

Kids get a Haiti cultural experience

Arts & Theater: Young tots got a cultural experience at a Haitian dance event in the Flatlands library branch on April 19. Comment

Clarke announces 2017 Congressional Art Competition

Arts & Theater: Brooklyn Congresswoman Yvette D. Clarke has announced the 2017 Congressional Art Competition, which allows young Brooklyn artists to share their inspiration with the entire community. Comment
Music: What do teachers do in their spare time? Most teachers would say that’s a contradiction in terms! Teachers who are also artists have in fact two vocations — like Brooklyn’s PS 138 middle school teachers Michèle Voltaire Marceline and Alix (Buyu) Ambroise and teaching artist Jessica St. Vil-Ulysse. Comment

Life and struggles of Josh Gibson

Arts & Theater: He was the black bambino before the great bambino. A production highlighting Pittsburgh baseball player Josh Gibson is premiering at the Theater for the New City in Manhattan from April 19–May 7. Comments (2)
Arts & Theater: The Caribbean American immigrant experience comes forth in a new musical highlighting some common themes of the Diaspora. “Welcome to America: A Caribbean Musical,” is a musical about one undocumented immigrant attempting to find her dreams and learning some life lessons along the way. Comment

The Mama Foundation revives ‘ALIVE!’ musical for spring

Music: Vy Higginsen and The Mama Foundation for The Arts announces their Spring 2017 Season with the revival of the hit musical ALIVE! 55+ and Kickin’ at The Dempsey Theater in Harlem, New York on Thursday, April 27, 2017 at 7 pm, followed by Saturday matinees on May 6, 13 and 20 at 1 pm. Comment
Arts & Theater: The Jamaican Consulate in New York celebrated some of the country’s most talented at an exhibit in Manhattan on March 31. The “Literary Salon, Jewelry, and Art Exhibit” highlighted the artwork, literature, and designs from Jamaican authors, artists, and designers, as part of honoring Jamaica’s 55th year of independence. Comment

France hosts major exhibition on Jamaican music

Arts & Theater: PARIS, March 29, 2017 (IPS) — It’s one of those movie-like spring days in Paris, where blue skies and brilliant sunshine lift spirits after a long, wet, grey winter. Many people are outdoors trying to catch the rays, but Jamaican artist Danny Coxson is not among them. He’s inside a museum in a northeastern neighbourhood of the French capital, with a brush in his hand and tubs of vivid paint beside him, focusing on finishing a portrait of a deejay named Big Youth. Comment

March, 2017


Arts & Theater: Thespians seem to cultivate their gift of expression by affecting the emotions of an audience large or small using comedy, drama to elicit tears and laughter within a brief period. Comment

Vincy group hosts National Heroes Day celebration

Arts & Theater: Despite the bitterly cold weather, the Brooklyn-based Garifuna Indigenous People of St. Vincent and the Grenadines, Inc. (GIPSVG, Inc.) Saturday evening held a very successful 2nd Annual National Heroes Day celebration at the Friends of Crown Heights Educational Center in Brooklyn. Comment
Arts & Theater: They are playing tribute. Comment
Arts & Theater: The warm friendliness of participants at the Grand 29th Annual Phagwah Parade, melted the cold weather that blanketed Richmond Hill, Queens last Sunday, March 12, as hundreds of Indo-Caribbean nationals and citizens of all religions and races, lined the streets, while others danced on colorful floats to celebrate the Hindu festival of Holi. Comment


Arts & Theater: She is going solo with her bio. A one-woman show portraying multiple characters is tackling the immigrant experience and domestic violence in the Caribbean community at the New Perspective Theatre in Manhattan from March 8–12. Guyanese-American actress Ingrid Griffith’s tale “Demerara Gold,” explores the different figures in her life before and after entering the United States, and the adversity she experienced as a newcomer to the country, she said. Comment

Colorful Carnival in Haiti’s storm-hit region

Arts & Theater: LES CAYES, Haiti (AP) _ Haiti’s three-day Carnival festivities have brought rum-fueled parties, imaginative costumes and high-energy dance music to a southern city that’s still recovering from last year’s punishing Hurricane Matthew. Comment

Colorful Carnival in Haiti’s storm-hit region

Arts & Theater: LES CAYES, Haiti (AP) _ Haiti’s three-day Carnival festivities have brought rum-fueled parties, imaginative costumes and high-energy dance music to a southern city that’s still recovering from last year’s punishing Hurricane Matthew. Comment
Music: The Guyana Consulate in New York City was a scene of comradely, and jollification, on Friday, Feb. 24, when compatriots joined hands to mark their homeland’s 47th Republic Anniversary, and Mashramani celebration. Comments (1)

February, 2017

Museum Hue celebrates second anniversary

Arts & Theater: A cultural organization diversifying the museum and arts preservation industry is celebrating its anniversary at BLDG 92 on Feb. 24. Museum Hue is turning two and the founders of the arts collective are hosting a fiesta alongside Myrtle Avenue Brooklyn’s Black Artstory Month series. For their first anniversary they focused on promoting the mission and culture, this year they are creating a safe space for their supporters in light of social issues and highlighting black pride, said one of the founders. Comment

St. Lucian artist debuts in Manhattan

Arts & Theater: A St. Lucian sculptor, internationally-known for recreating human life in his works, has brought his art to New York City for the first time. Comment
Arts & Theater: “This exhibit makes me so happy,” says Gale Brewer, the borough president of Manhattan, of the “Quilts: Tribute to Black History 2017” exhibit in the art gallery of the Borough President’s Office Comment
Arts & Theater: Brooklyn Center for the Performing Arts at Brooklyn College continues its 2016-17 season with the much-anticipated return of Step Afrika! on Saturday, April 1, 2017 at 8 pm. Comment

Multi-city workshop to prep east-coasters for carnival

Arts & Theater: Get ready for carnival. Fuze carnival is taking off its third annual three-city dance tour in three states starting this month to prepare parade goers for carnival festivities in the Caribbean. Comment



Arts & Theater: On Saturday, Feb. 4 Asase Yaa African American Dance Theater celebrated its 16th anniversary by performing a ballet, “Ghana: The Place Where the Chief Sleeps” to a full house at Symphony Space. Comment

New York mas band at Guyana’s Mashramani

Arts & Theater: Now in its fifth year of revelry, New York costume band “Honest Illusions” will once again bring excitement to the streets of Georgetown, on Feb. 23, in a kaleidoscope of colorful pieces, under the theme “Mardi Gras,” to celebrate Guyana’s 47th Republic Anniversary, and Mashramani festivities. Comment

New play explores Harriet Tubman’s life

Arts & Theater: She is more than her narrative. A play highlighting Harriet Tubman’s final days opens at Crossroads Theatre on Feb. 16. “Beyond the Oak Trees” is a play about the freedom-fighter’s last journey on the Underground Railroad and her life in the elder home that she founded. Comment
Arts & Theater: Take a stroll down memory avenue. The fifth annual “Black Artstory” series of events and exhibitions will turn six blocks of Myrtle Avenue in Fort Greene and Clinton Hill into a walkable history of African healing practices this month. Comment

January, 2017

Arts & Theater: Brooklyn Center for the Performing Arts at Brooklyn College continues its 2016-17 season with the much-anticipated return of National Dance Theatre Company of Jamaica (NDTC) on Saturday, March 18, 2017 at 8 pm and on Sunday, March 19, 2017 at 3 pm. Comments (1)

Haitian Revolution captured in new US exhibit

Arts & Theater: The Haitian Revolution is captured in a new exhibit here that features 15 rarely seen silkscreen prints about Toussaint L’Ouverture, the Haitian ex-slave turned general who led a revolution that ultimately wrested the Caribbean island from French control and ended slavery. Comment
Arts & Theater: Triskelion Arts, in association with Vangeline Theater, presents Wake Up and Smell the Coffee - Butoh for Waste Prevention: Reducing Coffee Trash in New York at Triskelion Arts (106 Calyer Street, Brooklyn, NY 11222) from April 20-22, 2017 at 8pm. Comment

WIADCA unveils huge 50th anniversary celebrations

Arts & Theater: The Brooklyn-based West Indian American Day Carnival Association (WIADCA), organizers of the extravagant Labor Day Carnival Parade on Brooklyn’s Eastern Parkway, has unveiled several activities to mark its 50th anniversary. Comment

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