Tuesday, July 27, 2021

MICKEY THOMAS TERRY-Virtual Organ Recital on YouTube-Featuring Bach, Mozart, Liszt, Thomas Kerr, and Mark Fax

Dear Epiphany Tuesday Concert Series supporters,

I would like to share this week's Epiphany TCS performance with you. Organist Mickey Thomas Terry will perform music by Bach, Mozart, Liszt, and two African-American composers.  It will premiere on Tuesday July 27, 2021 at 12:15 pm (EST) and remain at the following YouTube link:

For more information about the program and the performer:

Program note for today's concert:

Thank you for your support and being a great part of the mission of the Epiphany's music ministry.  We will try our best making great music to serve this church and the community. 


Claire J. Cho  l Violinist
Program Manager, Tuesday Concert Series

African Diaspora Music Project is Helping Singers & Orchestras Diversify Their Repertoire With New Database of Works By African Diaspora Composers



Currently housing nearly 4,000 songs and more than 1,200 symphonic works, the database will continue to grow through new submissions and continued research


Monday, July 26, 2021– Ann Arbor, MI: In September 2019, after decades of researching and consolidating vocal works by African Diaspora composers, Dr. Louise Toppin launched the African Diaspora Music Project (ADMP) database, which currently offers nearly 4,000 songs by composers of African descent.

Toppin, a professor at the University of Michigan’s School of Music, Theatre & Dance explains:

“As artists increasingly look to diversify their programming, they are faced with unexpected challenges. While living composers often update their websites, many pieces by previous generations of African Diaspora composers are not published, and it takes hours of research to find publisher information for others. This is compounded by a lack of performance history for many pieces, which have been historically underperformed, have been neglected for decades, or were never premiered.”

“My father's passion for history as a public historian--not someone who spent his time just writing works for an academic audience, but hosting television and radio shows, writing for newspapers, finding ways to reach a wide audience—has deeply informed my approach and scope for this project. It has shaped me,” Toppin stated about the legacy of her father, Edgar Allan Toppin, Sr. A public historian and an African-American professor of history specializing in Civil War, Reconstruction, and African-American history, one of his many accomplishments was becoming Board President of the Association for the Study of Afro-American Life and History, where he was instrumental in turning Black History Week into Black History Month in 1976.


Trained as an archivist, first by her father and later as a doctoral student at the University of Michigan, Toppin learned the difficulty of locating and bringing together repertoire. Her project began informally while at the University of Michigan while working as a research assistant to music scholars George Shirley and Willis Patterson, and later while organizing the works of Florence Price owned by scholar Ray Linda Brown. As she traveled to the National Association of Negro musicians, the country's oldest Association of Black professional musicians, she had the opportunity to meet and perform with Black composers who freely shared their works with her. Overtime, she amassed one of the largest personal collections of composers of African descent.


Designed as a living and growing database that will strengthen as more works are submitted and discovered, African Diaspora Music Project supports Toppin’s ongoing mission to help bring this music to concert halls around the world. The database is designed with conductors and artistic administrators in mind, making it extremely user-friendly. Users can search by ensemble size and length of work, allowing them to find many pieces for their programming needs, and with perusal PDFs of scores and recordings provided whenever possible. ADMP is a free resource created as a repository for music, providing access to scores, and encouraging research, exploration and performance of new works.


Lee Koonce, President and Artistic Director, of Gateways Music Festival shares: “African Diaspora Music Project provides a transformational resource at a time when individual artists and performing arts organizations are making a more serious effort to reflect the broadest communities and constituencies possible.” 


“ADMP has introduced me to a host of composers and works unknown to me beforehand and I have already begun a journey with this wonderful music that will not only help in providing material for future recording projects, but will also inspire interesting and creative programming ideas,” American operatic tenor Lawrence Brownlee shares. “I’ve only just scratched the surface of this extremely impressive website, but I look forward to the new discoveries I’ll find in this ever-expanding database.”

ADMP includes access to works in various languages and from across the globe, such as Pende from the Republic of Congo, French Creole, Portuguese from Brazil, and more. Works span from H.T. Burleigh, the first prominent Black composer in America born at the end of the Civil War to millennial composer Brandon J. Spencer, and from well-known artists to compositions waiting to be fully appreciated and performed.  It’s not hyperbolic to note that ADMP may change the very voice of American music as the works of Black composers can now be accessed easily in one user-friendly database.


Susie Park, Chair of the Minnesota Orchestra Artistic Advisory Committee, has used the database’s searchable composer, length, and instrumentation features while selecting composers for season programming: “African Diaspora Music Project Database is an invaluable tool in finding works by Black composers, not only for our season programming, but for our upcoming Anti-Racist Learning Project. As the database grows as a repository, I can only imagine how it will serve to be even more indispensable to musicians and administrators searching for music by Black composers, and effectively expand the canon and face of classical music as we know it."


American Baritone Thomas Hampson concurs: "One of the most exciting and important resource databases to appear in a long time is the African Diaspora Music  Project. With the heightened and enlightened curiosity for all things African American, especially in the myriad and fascinating canon of classical music, this resource is indispensable. Let us all move forward together.” The latest Hampsong Foundation project “Song of America: A Celebration of Black music” at the Elbphilharmonie Hamburg was brilliantly formed with the guidance of Dr. Louise Toppin and her African Diaspora Project.


In 2020, when Conductor James Blachly approached Toppin with the possibility of adding an orchestral component to the site, she jumped at the opportunity:


“When James reached out to me I realized that this was the right moment and the right collaborative partner to move the database into phase II.  We hope that this iteration provides an even better user experience for those researching both vocal and orchestral repertoire.  Together James and I hope that we can help transform the experience of musicians interested in incorporating the work of African Diaspora composers."


“With 1,200 entries so far, we expect this resource to help people program with far greater breadth than they would doing their own research with limited time,” said Associate Editor James Blachly. “But we want this to be a resource that represents our ongoing efforts as a field, and for musicians, historians, orchestras, conductors, artistic administrators, and others to continually update it with new recordings and listings as our collective knowledge and research continues to expand.”



"Louise Toppin has been a leading and guiding force in the promotion and documentation of living and past composers of African descent.  Her tireless advocacy is a beacon for this important work. She not only leads as an innovative entrepreneur, educator, scholar but as well as a leading proponent of contemporary performance practice and concertizing. In my 30 + years as a composer and author, there would simply not be the current information and celebrations of our works as Black concert artists without the dedicated work of Louise Toppin." said Dr. Bill Banfield, composer, author


Artistic director/Conductor Berklee Contemporary Symphony Orchestra

President of the International Conductors Guild
Boston Symphony Orchestra Composer-in-Residence

Julius P. Williams said “Louise Toppin has been on the forefront championing African American composers for many years with her work with Videmus and the new database. I have collaborated on many of these projects and recorded with her two CDs that emphasizes the music of black composers i.e, “Heart on the Wall” and our newest release songs of ‘Love and Justice’ which will be out later this year on the Albany record label.  She is one of the few people that I see to have true credibility on this subject and has spent years curating the Black Music repertoire, existence and excellence in concert music.”


“I spent a lot of time at ADMP listening and learning. A couple hours in fact. And a big chunk of time with Bill Banfield’s music. This literally wouldn’t have been possible even a month ago. Such an amazing accomplishment. Thank you both so much. This resource is going to make real impact in the industry.” explained James Barry.


Dr. Louise Toppin has received critical acclaim for her operatic, orchestral, and oratorio performances in the United States, Europe, South America, Asia, New Zealand, Cuba, Puerto Rico and the Caribbean. She has appeared in recital on many concert series including Carnegie Hall, Kennedy Center, Broadway’s Hudson Theater, and Lincoln Center.


Represented by Joanne Rile Artist Management, she toured in "Gershwin on Broadway" with pianist Leon Bates and currently tours in that show with Joseph Joubert, piano and Robert Sims, baritone.  She has recorded eighteen compact disks of primarily American Music including solo CDs Songs of Illumination, (Centaur Records), and on Albany Records Ah love, but a day, He’ll Bring it to Pass, (Joseph Joubert, piano), Witness with the Czech National Symphony, Heart on the Wall with the Prague Radio Symphony and La Saison des fleurs,  CDs with three publications including A Hall Johnson collection from Carl Fisher publisher.   Her newest releases due out in 2021 are Songs of Love and Justice and Summer.Life.Songs (two CDs of songs for soprano by Adolphus Hailstork); Duos (with countertenor Darryl Taylor on African American vocal chamber music) and The Soprano Songs of T. J. Anderson with pianist John McDonald. 


Most recently she has edited scores for publication. Her recent publications Rediscovering Margaret Bonds: Spiritual Suite and four volumes of Songs by Adolphus Hailstork (Deux Chansons, Sacred Songs, Songs with harp and Chamber works) were released in the summer of 2020 by the publisher Classical Vocal Reprints.  Her anthology of Rediscovering Margaret Bonds: Art Songs was released March 1, 2021  from Classical Vocal Reprints and her Margaret Bonds choral work “St. Francis’ Prayer” for SATB with Hildegard Press will all be released later in March.


Her recent performances include the 150th celebration of the ratification of the 13th amendment for Congress and President Obama at the U.S. Capitol; a performance in Havana, Cuba with the women’s orchestra Camerata Romeu and the opening of the Smithsonian’s African American Heritage Museum.


As a scholar, she has lectured on the music of African American composers and has appeared on NPR’s All Things Considered (Margaret Bonds); for many national conventions and on many college campuses including Harvard, Tufts, and Duke.  As the co-founder and director of the George Shirley Vocal Competition that focuses exclusively on repertoire by African American art song, and Videmus (a non-profit organization that promotes the concert repertoire of African American and women composers), she encourages the performance and scholarship of African American compositions by students and scholars. She is also the founder of the Africandiasporamusicproject.org that is a research tool to locate the repertoire of composers of the African Diaspora from the 1600s to the present.


Previously, Dr. Toppin was the Distinguished University Professor of Music and Chair of the Department of Music at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill.  She is currently Professor of Music (Voice) at The University of Michigan.  www.louisetoppin.com


James Blachly is a Grammy®-winning conductor dedicated to enriching the concert experience by connecting with audiences in memorable and meaningful ways. His world premiere recording of English composer Dame Ethel Smyth’s 1930 masterpiece The Prison, released on Chandos Records, won a 2021 Grammy Award and was widely acclaimed by The New York Times, The New Yorker, Gramophone, San Francisco Chronicle, Financial Times, The Guardian, and many others.


James Blachly serves as Music Director of the Johnstown Symphony Orchestra and of the Experiential Orchestra, and is in increasing demand as a versatile guest conductor in diverse repertoire, including his debut with the New York Philharmonic in March 2022.  Since 2020, Blachly has served as Associate Editor and Orchestral Liaison for the African Diaspora Music Project, directed by Dr. Louise Toppin. 

Monday, July 26, 2021

Sphinx Organization, Inc.: Announcing Recipients of the 2022 Sphinx Medals of Excellence!

Sphinx Organization is proud to announce the three recipients of the 2022 Sphinx Medals of Excellence: pianist Michelle Cann, violinist Randall Goosby, and soprano Karen Slack. 

The Sphinx Medal of Excellence is the highest honor bestowed by the Sphinx Organization, the social justice organization dedicated to transforming lives through the power of diversity in the arts, and comes with a $50,000 career grant. The medal recognizes extraordinary classical musicians of color. Recipients are artists who early in their career demonstrate artistic excellence, outstanding work ethic, a spirit of determination, and an ongoing commitment to leadership and their communities.

Meet the 2022 Recipients

Michelle Cann

"I'm extremely honored to receive the Sphinx Medal of Excellence, and to become part of this esteemed family of change-makers. I've always admired Sphinx's efforts to change the face of classical music, and I'm committed to furthering this mission especially for young pianists of color. With this award, I hope to inspire and motivate new generations of musicians by celebrating and advancing works by great Black composers."

Pianist Michelle Cann made her orchestral debut at age 14 and has since performed as a solo recitalist, chamber musician, and orchestral soloist around the world. She has appeared at venues including the Barbican and Kennedy Center, and with ensembles including The Cleveland and Philadelphia Orchestras. Among her specialties is the music of Florence Price, with performance highlights including the New York City and Philadelphia premieres of the composer’s Concerto in One Movement. Ms. Cann studied at the Cleveland Institute of Music and the Curtis Institute of Music, where she holds the inaugural Eleanor Sokoloff Chair in Piano Studies.

Randall Goosby

"I am truly grateful for this award and opportunity from the Sphinx Organization, whose indelible influence on my musicianship has brought me to this point in my career. Participating in the Sphinx Competition over a decade ago opened my eyes to the potential for myself and other musicians of color to make our mark on the world of classical music. I hope to continue making classical music ever more accessible to young musicians, especially those of color, and amplifying the work of marginalized creators within this field.”

Violinist Randall Goosby is acclaimed for the sensitivity and intensity of his musicianship, as well as for his determination to make classical music more inclusive and accessible. He made his debut with the Jacksonville Symphony at age nine and, at age 13, performed with the New York Philharmonic in a Young People’s Concert. He is one of the youngest winners of the Sphinx Competition and a recipient of Sphinx’s Isaac Stern Award. His debut album, Roots—a celebration of African American music—was released by Decca Classics in June 2021. A graduate of the Juilliard School, he continues to pursuing an Artist Diploma there under Itzhak Perlman and Catherine Cho. 

Karen Slack

"What an honor to receive the illustrious Medal of Excellence. To have my work acknowledged by this amazing organization and now to be a part of the Sphinx family is tremendous. In an industry where it can be incredibly difficult to build and then sustain a career, to be recognized by an organization whose mission it is to foster, support, and empower Black and Latinx artists and arts administrators is humbling. I am extremely proud to now have my name aligned with artists, leaders, and advocates that I greatly admire and respect. Thank you to Afa and Aaron Dworkin for your tireless advocacy and commitment to our art form.”

Soprano Karen Slack is hailed for possessing a voice of extraordinary beauty and a seamless legato, garnering critical acclaim in leading operatic roles and on the concert stage. She has starred in productions at the Metropolitan, Lyric (Chicago), Washington National, and San Francisco Operas, among others, and has created roles in new operatic works by Black composers Terence Blanchard and Hannibal Lokumbe. She is Artistic Advisor for Portland Opera and Co-Director of the Banff Centre for the Performing Arts, focusing on diversity, equality, and inclusion initiatives in both roles. A former San Francisco Opera Adler Fellow, she is also a graduate of the Curtis Institute of Music.

The 2022 Sphinx Medals of Excellence are generously underwritten by Fund II Foundation and William H. Carson, M.D. 

Sunday, July 25, 2021

Challenge the Stats Team: Sounds of the New Normal Concert noontime Wednesday, July 28, First Presbyterian Church of Atlanta & Live Streamed

Harpist Angelica Hairston, founder of Challenge the Stats, is joined by cellist Khari Joyner and harpist Brandee Younger in an afternoon of unforgettable music in a noontime concert on Wednesday, July 28. 

These three internationally acclaimed Black artists will perform works by BIPOC (Black Indigenous, and People of Color) composers and discuss ways to celebrate communities of color as we navigate a “new normal” in our nation.

Challenge the Stats (CTS) exists to empower BIPOC by creating communities devoted to equity in the classical performing arts. CTS seeks to equip audiences and artists with the tools needed to advocate for justice both inside and outside of the concert hall. 

This free event will admit a limited reserved in-person audience at First Presbyterian Church of Atlanta, 1328 Peachtree St NW, Atlanta, GA 30309.  It will also be live streamed.

For more information:

The Harlem Chamber Players: This Monday and Tuesday - 4 Free Summer Pop-Up Concerts

 We hope you can join us for any of our 4 FREE Pop-up concerts this week!

Ashley Horne, Claire Chan, William Frampton, Leo Grinhauz

Ashley Horne, Violin
Claire Chan, Violin
William Frampton, Viola
Leo Grinhauz, Cello

Jackie Robinson Park Bandshell, Bradhurst Avenue & 147th Street, New York, NY 10039
Monday, July 26 at 5 PM

Beethoven String Quartet Op. 18 No. 3 in D Major
Paquito D'Rivera Wapango
Carlos Simon An Elegy: A Cry from the Grave
Nkeiru Okoye Movements


Hope Garden, 475 West 152nd Street, New York, NY 10031
Monday, July 26 at 7 PM

Florence Price String Quartet in G Major
Trevor Weston Fudo 
George Walker String Quartet No. 1

Thomas Paine Park in Foley Square, Lafayette and Worth Streets, New York, NY 10013
Tuesday, July 27 at 5 PM

Florence Price String Quartet in G Major
Trevor Weston Fudo Myoo
George Walker String Quartet No. 1


Hope Garden, 475 West 152nd Street, New York, NY 10031
Tuesday, July 27 at 7 PM

Beethoven String Quartet Op. 18 No. 3 in D Major
Paquito D'Rivera Wapango
Carlos Simon An Elegy: A Cry from the Grave
Nkeiru Okoye Movements


These concerts are sponsored by the Musicians Performance Trust Fund.
These concerts are sponsored by the Musicians Performance Trust Fund

Listen to WQXR, New York City's only classical music radio station live now at 105.9 FM and wqxr.org, and sign up for the WQXR e-newsletter for weekly highlights, links to web streams, on-demand concerts, videos, events from The Greene Space and more.

The Harlem Chamber Players 2020-21 Season is supported, in part, by public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs, in partnership with the City Council; in part by the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Andrew Cuomo and the New York State Legislature; in part by a grant from Columbia Community Service; in part by West Harlem Development Corporation via the Tides Foundation; in part with funding from the Turrell Fund; in part with funding from the Upper Manhattan Empowerment Zone Development Corporation and administered by LMCC; in part by the Manhattan Community Award Program via Manhattan Borough President Gale A. Brewer; in part by a grant from the New York Community Trust/Charles E. Culpeper Fund; in part by a grant from the Charles Stewart Mott Foundation; in part by a grant from J.P. Morgan Securities Charitable Giving Fund; in part by a grant from The M&T Charitable Foundation; in part by a grant from the Howard Gilman Foundation; in part by a grant from the Baisley Powell Elebash Fund; in part by a grant from the Castellano Family Foundation; in part by a grant from the Reba Judith Sandler Foundation; in part from a grant from the Richenthal Foundation; and through the generous donations of our supporters and donors.

Saturday, July 24, 2021

PriceFest 2021: A New Black Renaissance


So Many Ways to Support PriceFest 2021!

For the past several months, The International Florence Price Festival, has been meeting to organize our 2nd annual festival. This year's festival entitled PriceFest 2021: A New Black Renaissance will help us to achieve our mission to celebrate the life and legacy of composer Florence Beatrice Price by providing a platform through performances of Price's works alongside historic and new works by Black composers. I am so excited for all of the more than 12 hours of diverse content including: 

  • The premiere of My Lisette - A documentary on the evolution of Haitian folksong 
  • Performances by renowned artists including Marquita Lister, Melissa Givens, and Kevin Wayne Bumpers!
  • Zoom Green Room Sessions where we can all meet the artists and scholars! 
  • A mixed media event from multivalent artist Kamilla Arku. Check out this sneak peak of her work!

Register Now!

PriceFest 2021 is sponsored by the University of Maryland School of Music and will take place virtually August 20-23, 2021. The one-time $50 registration fee grants attendees access to all live-streaming, interactive, Zoom-based content. Registered attendees will also have exclusive access to Green Room sessions with our featured artists! You do not wanna miss out, so register now!

Purchase an Ad!

If you are unable to attend or would simply like to lend additional support, please consider purchasing an ad in our program e-booklet (visit www.pricefest.org/ads and link to your ad file). The e-booklet will be seen by hundreds of virtual conference attendees, if last year’s viewership is any indication! Consider sponsoring a fellow artist or educator to attend the event ($50 donation), as well.

All donations are 100% tax deductible. 

Spread the Word!

Help us by spreading the word on social media by sharing that you registered using the hashtag #newblackrenaissance or #PriceFest2021. Follow us on Facebook and Instagram where will be dropping exciting teaser content!

Thanks in advance for your consideration and support. We will see you in August!

All Love and Light, 

Dr. Marquese Carter (they/them)
President, International Florence Price Festival

Click Here to Register


ArtsFuse.org: Classical Album Review: American Quintets — Why Has it Taken so Long? [The most intriguing entry here is Price's Piano Quintet]

American Quintets: Amy Beach, Florence Price, Samuel Barber
Kaleidoscope Chamber Collective

Florence B. Price (1887-1953)

July 24, 2021

By Jonathan Blumhofer

This disc from the London-based Kaleidoscope Chamber Collective pairs piano quintets by Amy Beach and Florence Price with Samuel Barber’s haunting “Dover Beach.”

It’s taken a long time — more than seventy years — but the chamber music (at least) of Amy Beach and Florence Price seems to be gaining a toehold in the repertoire. At least that’s one takeaway from the debut recording of the London-based Kaleidoscope Chamber Collective (KCC), which pairs piano quintets by those two American women with Samuel Barber’s haunting Dover Beach.

The most intriguing entry here is Price’s Piano Quintet. Discovered in 2009 in a cache of scores in an abandoned house in Illinois, no one knows for certain when it was written (though scholarship suggests that it was likely composed around 1935). As in most of her large-scale compositions, the Quintet’s four movements balance Price’s late-Romantic stylistic sensibilities with musical influences from her African-American heritage.

To be sure, the latter inspire some of the Quintet’s finest moments. The slow movement, for instance, with its fervent, spiritual-like harmonic progressions and melodic phrasings, is breathtaking. And the heavily syncopated, gamboling “Juba” movement wants nothing for drive, charm, or freewheeling energy.

In the outer movements, Price’s writing is focused and Romantic. But it’s also a bit strict and, by comparison to the central ones, formally stuffy. That’s not to say the music lacks heart or passion — the first, in particular, offers both in spades — just that its debts to Brahms and Dvorak are more evident than not.

Either way, the Quintet is an inviting piece and this, its premiere recording, should win the score a robust following. The KCC digs into the music throughout, ably illuminating its busy textures and troves of tunes. Tom Poster’s execution of the Quintet’s intensely busy piano part is nothing short of epic. Indeed, this reading feels like just the type of “event” of which Price’s music is so deserving.

Friday, July 23, 2021

NOBLE: 45th Annual Virtual Conference - Rebuilding Trust, Empowering Communities: Reimagining Public Safety in the 21st Century


In the wake of this renewed focus on justice in policing, NOBLE
proclaims the time is now for our country to reimagine public
safety. We have an opportunity to truly consider what public safety
means, and how best to invest in our communities to ensure
public safety for all.

Join us for multiple days of insightful sessions covering critical topics, including:
  • The Growing Threat of Extremist Violence and Hate Crimes: What Can Be Done About It?

  • Public Trust and Law Enforcement Use of Force

  • A State of Emergency: Missing, Murdered and Unaccounted for Women

  • The Thin Black Line: The Cost of Being Black Behind the Badge 

  • Police Unions: Prioritizing Citizens’ Rights, Police Rights, and Collective Bargaining Practices

Member cost: $250
Non-member cost: $350

Registration includes: all virtual sessions on July 31 - August 3 and access to the training sessions, exhibition hall, technology demos, virtual networking lounges, prizes, and more.

Deeply Rooted Dance Theater: The International Association of Blacks in Dance Announces 2021 INFLUENCERS Cohort

 IABD Supports Five Dance Companies across the U.S. through multi-year funding totaling more than $750,000 in Awards

The International Association of Blacks in Dance (IABD) announces the INFLUENCERS Cohort for the 2021 COHI | MOVE program. The five companies that comprise the cohort will each receive a total of $150,000 over the next three years:  Collage Dance Collective, Memphis, TN; Deeply Rooted Dance Theater, Chicago, IL; Emerge 125, New York, NY; KanKouran West African Dance Company, Washington, DC; and StepAfrika!, Washington, DC.

“IABD is pleased to support these dance companies through our partnership with Nonprofit Finance Fund,” said Denise Saunders Thompson, president and CEO of IABD. “These times remain challenging as dance organizations approach over a year and half of being shut down. The next three to four years are critical, as this cohort will continue the capacity building and capital deployment methodologies used to strengthen Black Dance companies, with the goal of creating more adaptable organizations that carry on vibrant artistic programming. We are extremely excited to work with this next cohort and remain committed to their organizational and financial health.”

The organizations were selected based on several key considerations for participation:

·      commitment to collaborative participation and engagement with IABD, NFF, program consultants, and cohort companies,

·      the depth of community relationships,

·      demand for local based programming greater than the organization’s ability to provide,

·      engagement and demonstrated support of local artists and the local arts community,

·      demonstrated loss for the community if this organization no longer existed.

The Comprehensive Organizational Health Initiative (COHI) | Managing Organizational Vitality and Endurance (MOVE) is a multi-phase and collaborative program in partnership with the Nonprofit Finance Fund (NFF) designed to improve the structural and financial health of dance companies. The program has a strong emphasis on peer learning and evaluation that delivers methodology and resources to strengthen the financial and organizational health of the IABD Membership. NFF provides the analytic basis, requisite data, training, and planning for a comprehensive initiative that addresses the financial capacity and capitalization needs for long-term stability of these critical dance organizations. In partnership with NFF, IABD will offer access to financial coaching so that companies may receive strategic feedback and guidance as they seek to apply the learnings to their organizations. IABD will also underwrite access to discrete consulting engagements over the course of the four-year period.

Gifts from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation and the Ford Foundation support the Comprehensive Organizational Health Initiative | Managing Organizational Vitality and Endurance (COHI | MOVE) program.

About The International Association of Blacks in Dance

For 30 years, The International Association of Blacks in Dance (IABD) has preserved and promoted dance by people of African ancestry or origin and has assisted and increased opportunities for artists in advocacy, audience development, education, funding, networking, performance, philosophical dialogue, and touring. IABD serves a diverse, national and international membership of agents and managers, dance companies and studios, educators and educational institutions, individual artists, researchers, and supporters of the Dance field.

About Collage Dance Collective: Collage Dance Collective works to inspire the growth of ballet by showcasing a repertoire of relevant choreography and world-class dancers representative of our community. Founded in New York City in 2006, Collage Dance Collec­tive received rave reviews for its 2007 national debut at the Lyric Opera House in Kansas City, Missouri. The company relocated to Memphis in 2007 to take part in the city’s exciting artistic renaissance and to fulfill its mission of extending the reach of outstanding classical ballet training. Since its move, the professional company has presented nine full-length seasons in Memphis, plus national and international touring. collagedance.org/

About Deeply Rooted Dance Theater: Deeply Rooted Dance Theater reimagines and diversifies the aesthetics of contemporary dance by uniting modern, classical, American, and African-American traditions in dance and storytelling. Through its uncompromising pursuit of excellence, Deeply Rooted demonstrates the transformative power of art and beauty through dance education, performance, and cultural enrichment in Chicago and on the world stage. Deeply Rooted is rooted in traditions of American and African-American dance, storytelling, and universal themes that spark a visceral experience and ignite an emotional response in diverse audiences worldwide. Deeply Rooted collaborates with nationally renowned choreographers, across the spectrum of modern, ballet, and African dance, to reflect contemporary voices. deeplyrooteddancetheater.org/

About Emerge 125: Founded in 1981, EMERGE125 (formerly Elisa Monte Dance), bridges cultural barriers through the universal language of dance. The company’s work emphasizes three main objectives: CREATE with and for a corps of professional dancers; EDUCATE individuals in the art of movement and in appreciation of live dance performance; and COLLABORATE with distinguished artists across other disciplines to bring dance to new audiences and new platforms. In 2021, the company debuted a new name: EMERGE125 (E125), a shift that signals a new era for the organization. “125” celebrates our Harlem neighborhood, historically centered around 125th Street, and our commitment to build, lead, and center our local community in our work. “Emerge” conjures the dynamic, athletic energy that pervades our performance work, and embodies our dedication to continued re-envisioning: never emerged but instead always in the process of present tense, active evolution. emerge125.org/

About KanKouran West African Dance Company: KanKouran’s mission is to preserve and promote traditional West African culture by providing quality entertainment and educational programs to local and national audiences in an effort to facilitate cross-cultural enrichment. KanKouran’s immediate future is devoted to the establishment of an African Cultural Center. This Center will serve as a model to educate the community in order to foster a greater understanding of and appreciation for pan-African and cross-cultural artistic cooperative endeavors. Patrons and visitors alike will have the opportunity to learn about African culture and other cultures throughout the African Diaspora through the study of dance, music, drum making, language, drama, history, culinary and textile arts, and other aspects of culture. kankouran.org/

About StepAfrika!: Step Afrika! blends percussive dance styles practiced by historically African American fraternities and sororities; traditional African dances; and an array of contemporary dance and art forms into a cohesive, compelling artistic experience. Performances are much more than dance shows; they integrate songs, storytelling, humor and audience participation. The blend of technique, agility, and pure energy makes each performance unique and leaves the audience with their hearts pounding. Step Afrika! promotes stepping as an educational tool for young people, focusing on teamwork, academic achievement and cross-cultural understanding.  www.stepafrika.org/

About The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation: Founded in 1969, the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation believes that the arts and humanities are where we express our complex humanity, and we believe that everyone deserves the beauty, transcendence, and freedom to be found there. Through our grants, we seek to build just communities enriched by meaning and empowered by critical thinking, where ideas and imagination can thrive. Additional information is available at mellon.org.

About Nonprofit Finance Fund: Founded in 1980, the Nonprofit Finance Fund (NFF) is a nonprofit lender, consultant, and advocate for putting money to work in better ways for social good. NFF believes that improving the flow of money to community-centered organizations led by and serving people of color that have historically been denied it, begins by correcting the legacy of systemic underfunding restricting money and resources to organizations.  We envision a society where money and knowledge come together to support just and vibrant communities and proudly help mission-driven organizations achieve their communities' aspirations through tailored capital, strategic advice, and accessible insights. For more information on NFF visit www.nff.org.