Tuesday, March 31, 2020



Red Clay Dance Company (RCDC) is expanding the “guest list” for its annual fundraiser, Paint the Town Red, by moving the event to Instagram Live (@redclaydance) on its original date, Friday, April 3 from 8 to 9 p.m.

The live virtual party will include:
  • Live music by DJ Nick Nonstop
  • Live chats with RCDC dancers and supporters who can share what’s happening at their own home parties
  • Dance challenges by the dancers
  • More spontaneous sharing
  • After-party (9 p.m. on) continues on DJ Nick Nonstop’s Instagram
“Partygoers” will have the opportunity to make donations at redclaydance.com/donate throughout the event to support the company’s mission to provide access to world-class dance for all people through performances, classes, and community engagement events.

Leading up to the party, RCDC will share the following:
  • Tuesday, March 31, 10 a.m. (through Monday, April 6) on Vimeo (vimeo.com/redclaydance): RCDC will post a full-length video of Art of Resilience 2.0, RCDC’s premiere from spring 2019 at the DuSable Roundhouse
  • Wednesday, April 1, 5:30 p.m. on Instagram: To help viewers get ready for the Friday night party, RCDC has partnered with Chicago-based artist and wardrobe stylist @kfleye who will share tips on how to stay FLEYE now and later on. She will also talk about the styling of her costumes for INCARNATION 1, Du’Bois A’Keen’s premiere that he created for the original “Visions & Voices” program April 3 and 4.
  • Thursday, April 2, 6:30 p.m. on Instagram: RCDC Special Events Coordinator Erika Jones will provide viewers with for keeping the party live at home.
On Saturday, April 4, RCDC will live-stream two short films of the creative process during guest choreographic residencies with Lela Aisha Jones and Du’Bois A’Keen as they each created a world premiere for RCDC’s “Visions & Voices” program.
For more information about RCDC, visit redclaydance.com.

Red Clay Dance Company
Red Clay Dance Company lives to awaken “glocal” change through creating, performing, and teaching dances of the African Diaspora—change that transforms cultural and socioeconomic inequities in our local and global community. Founder Vershawn Sanders-Ward conceived the idea of RCDC while on her first trip to Senegal, West Africa, when she became fascinated by the interconnectedness of dance and everyday life. The name Red Clay comes from her childhood memories of playing in red earth during her summers in Mobile, Alabama.

RCDC is supported by the Chicago Community Trust, the Alphawood Foundation, the MacArthur Fund for Arts and Culture at the Richard H Driehaus Foundation, the Lloyd A. Fry Foundation, the Gaylord and Dorothy Donnelley Foundation, the Springboard Foundation, the Polk Bros. Foundation, and the Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events.

John Malveaux: Ambassador Aharoni: "ISRAEL is the only country, outside of the USA, that is officially marking MLK’s legacy."

Ido Aharoni

Rev Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

John Malveaux of MusicUNTOLD.com writes:

Ambassador Ido Aharoni serves as a global distinguished professor at New York University’s School of International Relations in the Faculty of Arts and Sciences. Ambassador Aharoni is a 25-year veteran of Israel’s Foreign service, a public diplomacy specialist, founder of the Brand Israel program and a well-known nation branding practitioner. Ambassador Aharoni, who served as Israel's longest serving consul-general in New York and the tristate area for six years, oversaw the operations of Israel’s largest diplomatic mission worldwide.

Ambassador Aharoni has been a member of Israel’s Foreign Service since the summer of 1991 and held two other overseas positions in Los Angeles and in New York.  I befriended Ambassador Aharoni during his tenure in Los Angeles.  

As President of the Long Beach Central Area Association, i partnered with photojournalist Irene Fertrick for a book signing & photo exhibit titled "BETA ISRAEL-House of Israel (capturing the hardships and kinships of Ethiopian Jews living in Israel) followed by reception led by Rabbi-Cantor. The location was Long Beach Borders Books and Music, June 7, 1998. The event was officially endorsed by the Israeli Consulate in honor of the 50th anniversary of Israel's statehood. 

I recently emailed Ambassador Aharoni to share information about composer Elie Siegmeister I HAVE A DREAM Cantata with text by Edward Mabley based on a speech by Martin Luther King, Jr. I was surprised to learn from the Ambassador that "ISRAEL is the only country, outside of the USA, that is officially marking MLK’s legacy."  See pic 1 Israel Ambassador Ido Aharoni, pic 2 Rev Dr. Martin Luther King Jr

John Malveaux: Please see Metropolitan Opera soprano Latonia Moore's international schedule

Latonia Moore

John Malveaux of MusicUNTOLD.com writes:

Please see Metropolitan Opera soprano Latonia Moore's international schedule https://prometheanartists.com/new-events-1. Latonia Moore is also scheduled to sing June 29, 2020, Los Angeles Music Center's Walt Disney Concert Hall.  

Sunday, March 29, 2020

Sphinx Organization - COVID-19 Resources

COVID-19 Resources


Financial Relief and Income Loss

Online Teaching, Learning, and Working Remotely

More Resources from our Community

HeraldTribune.com: Thomas Wilkins will conduct Sarasota Orchestra in Masterworks Concert

Thomas Wilkins

Guest conductors and popular favorites fill new Sarasota Orchestra season


Some of the Masterworks series conductors will be familiar, including Marcelo Lehninger, who led the opening Discover Beethoven concert in the fall, and Thomas Wilkins and Carl St. Clair, who both return after an absence of several years.

Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law Issues Statement on Passing of Rev. Joseph E. Lowery

Rev. Lowery Widely Revered as“Dean of the Civil Rights Movement”
WASHINGTON, D.C. – The Lawyers' Committee for Civil Rights Under Law is deeply saddened by the passing of Rev. Joseph E. Lowery. Kristen Clarke, president and executive director of the Lawyers' Committee for Civil Rights Under Law, issued the following statement in response:

“Rev. Joseph E. Lowery was a pillar of the Civil Rights Movement who honorably dedicated his entire life to fighting against racial injustice and inequality. As the founding member of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference, he worked alongside Dr. Martin Luther King and was a central architect of the Montgomery Bus Boycott. He was a staunch advocate for voting rights, having participated in the march from Selma to Montgomery and, later in life, founding the Georgia Coalition for the People's Agenda, an organization that continues to battle voter suppression today.  He was a beloved and committed preacher who used his pulpit to inspire action and to promote the dignity of all Americans regardless of race. He courageously confronted bigotry in the Jim Crow South and humbly spoke up for the disenfranchised and oppressed. Rev. Lowery's decades-long work to secure voting rights, racial justice and economic equality for Black Americans has unequivocally helped to make our nation a better place today."

In 1997, upon retirement as the president of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference, Rev. Lowery stated: “In 1957, we saw a fire burning in the souls of Black America. Water hoses couldn't wash it out, billy clubs couldn't beat it out and jails couldn't lock it out." The Lawyers' Committee for Civil Rights Under Law extends condolences to the family of Rev. Joseph E. Lowery, including our client, Cheryl Lowery, the Executive Director of the Joseph and Evelyn Lowery Institute for Justice and Human Rights." 

Saturday, March 28, 2020

SantaFeNewMexican.com: Daniel Crupi: “We’re performing more works by women and composers of color"

Martha Graham Dance Company's ballet of Aaron Copland's Appalachian Spring

Santa Fe New Mexican

Mark Tiarks

Mar 27, 2020

The Santa Fe Symphony and Performance Santa Fe announced their 2020-2021 seasons on March 24. It wasn’t an unfortunate coincidence or a case of bad planning, but an intentional decision reflecting a new spirit of collaboration.

Next March, the two groups are co-presenting one of the most compelling offerings on the upcoming cultural calendar, the Martha Graham Dance Company’s 75th anniversary presentation of its groundbreaking ballet Appalachian Spring. The symphony is furnishing the 13-member group that will play Aaron Copland’s original score for chamber orchestra, as well as accompanying The Auditions by Augusta Read Thomas, a 2019 ballet piece written specifically to be paired with the Copland.

Both organizations have new executive leadership, with Daniel Crupi becoming executive director of the symphony in March 2019 and Chad Hilligus taking the executive and artistic director reins at PSF four months later. The newly announced seasons are therefore the first to fully reflect their visions, and it’s an encouraging sign that both groups are demonstrating increased artistic vigor and engaging in new creative collaborations, in addition to their co-presenting venture.

“We’re performing more works by women and composers of color, commissioning new pieces, and prioritizing 20th- and 21st-century repertory,” says Crupi.


Performance Santa Fe’s season opens on July 19 with another high-profile co-presentation, this one with the Georgia O’Keeffe Museum. It’s based on the acclaimed 2019 multi-genre album Holes in the Sky by pianist Lara Downes, which featured music written by female composers including Janis Ian, Clara Schumann, Georgia Stitt, Eve Beglarian, Joni Mitchell, and Paola Prestini, among others.


The Sphinx Organization, which describes itself as “a social justice organization dedicated to transforming lives through the power of diversity in the arts,” and the symphony have entered into a three-year partnership, during which the Detroit-based group will provide a soloist for one of each year’s concerts. The first is violinist Rubén Rengel, who plays Felix Mendelssohn’s Violin Concerto in E Minor on a March 21, 2021, concert that also features the Symphony No. 1 by African American composer Florence Price. Price is one of classical music’s “hidden figures,” a woman whose important works from the first half of the 20th century are just now being rediscovered.

Rebeca Omordia plays "Willow Song" of William Lloyd Webber in Episode 5 of series by Julian Lloyd Webber

Julian Lloyd Webber - A voyage around my father’s music -episode 5- William Lloyd Webber Willow Song

Michela Cocolin

Julian Lloyd Webber introduces some favourite pieces of his father’s music William Lloyd Webber was born in 1914. He studied composition with Ralph Vaughan Williams at the Royal College of Music and was an accomplished organist and choirmaster. His own music was highly romantic in style and he became increasingly convinced that it was ‘out of step’ with the times. By the mid-1950’s he had virtually stopped composing altogether. Rebeca Omordia, piano

Comment by email:
Hi Bill!  Thank you very much for this! All best wishes to you in these troubled times.  Rebeca  [Rebeca Omordia]

Friday, March 27, 2020

The Classical Alternative: "What I wish everyone knew about Florence Price"

The Classical Alternative

Doug Shadle

March 19, 2020

With the world coming down around us, I’m not sure how relevant this will be. But maybe it can point to a better world in the future. (~DS, 3/18)

In my last post, I highlighted some of the exciting work on Florence Price taking shape right now. I also documented the positive power of storytelling when it frames performances of her music. By this point, most organizations programming Price’s music know they have a compelling story on their hands and want to tell it.
What I wish everyone really knew is this:

How we talk about Florence Price matters. A lot.

The Problem

The basic elements of “the” Florence Price story are:
  1. Price was “America’s first significant African American woman composer” and “the most widely known African American composer from the 1930s to her death in 1953.” (Rae Linda Brown, The Heart of a Woman, 1)
  2. Something happened after 1953 that seemingly caused this “significance” and “wide knowledge” to “fade.”
  3. In 2009, two property investors found a very large collection of Price’s music manuscripts strewn about an abandoned house. They later sold this collection to the University of Arkansas Mullins Library.
  4. The classical music industry developed a surge of interest in Price after:
There’s certainly a lot of human interest here! Her prolific musical career is inspiring, and the serendipity of the manuscript discovery is the stuff of legend. Performers would be foolish not to say something about these things. But one phrase on my list sticks out: “Something happened.” I might as well have put a giant question mark.
Here’s the thing, though: Marketers, educators, and performers who don’t adequately account for this mysterious #2 in their narratives about Price are perpetuating the industry’s racist, sexist norms and therefore undermining their own attempts to be inclusive.

Who’s Responsible?

So what happened, Shadle? It’s complicated! From the intro of an unpublished article:
The relevant evidence spans nearly a century and uncovers the complex dynamics of race, gender, and class underpinning the unsettling “loss” of Price’s belongings. Over the course of that century, the women in Price’s family confronted questions that have routinely haunted African American women in a society that has unapologetically placed their very lives at risk. This article teases apart the intricate layers of generational change within Price’s family and creates a portrait of a context in which her music could face persistent existential threats.
Persistent. Existential. Threats. Not something most classical musicians think about on a daily basis. But the truth is that identifiable individuals and organizations played active roles in Price’s marginalization both during and after her lifetime—a situation so profound that it jeopardized the existence of her music despite the resistance of Price and her daughter (which is what the rest of the article is about). “Something” doesn’t “just happen.” People do things, and these actions have consequences.

Assigning responsibility is central to ethical storytelling.

“Overlooked” and “Forgotten” … By Whom?

Before I continue, I want to make it clear that I’m far from the only person to address the issue of agency—in relation to Price or to marginalized people generally.

This tweet by Dr. Matthew Morrison of NYU gets to the heart of the matter:

Her music and reputation never really disappeared! Price scholar Kori Hill wrote an essential essay in November 2018 (just after G. Schirmer announced the acquisition of Price’s catalog) that makes similar points:
The “rediscovered” Black composer is a tired, damaging trope. It reflects an active process [emphasis mine], where certain histories and cultural memories are not considered “relevant” to the mainstream until they prove useful. Black musicians kept the name of Florence Price on their lips, in their minds, and under their fingers. She was not forgotten.

Earlier this year, James Bennett wrote another essential piece for WQXR that approaches the question from a slightly different angle:
When talking about Price, it’s easy to transform her story into a Coach Carter-esque hardscrabble narrative of overcoming obstacles and “persevering.” But this veers into territory that is, at worst, factually wrong or, at best, narratively irresponsible.
Finally, this tweet from Kenyan scholar Dr. Keguro Macharia directly addresses the underlying problem:

Read the entire thread. It could very well be about Price, because the ease with which her music has been brought into the spotlight also indicates how quickly it could fade.

The Wrong Way

These writers aren’t tilting at windmills—not at all. It’s easy to find examples of passive storytelling that hides responsibility. Take a line like this—here from Jesse Rosen, CEO of the League of American Orchestras:
“If you go back in time, this was not a viable career for a woman to become a composer,” Rosen explains. “And so, you have a canon that, by definition, does not have a lot of women composers in it.”
And so, you end up with tons of Mozart and Beethoven.
“Not a viable career…” “So you have a canon that…” “So you end up with…” Nope. Just wildly inaccurate narration that deflects responsibility from the real individuals and institutions that actively marginalized (and still marginalize) real women.
In Price’s case, I frequently run across copy like this (not linked intentionally):
Florence Price was the first female African American composer to have a symphonic work performed by a major symphony orchestra (Chicago Symphony, 1933). [True] Florence and her compositions have been historically overlooked [BY WHOM??] due to racial and gender inequity [CAUSED BY WHOM?], depriving her and the world of the legacy she deserves. Her works are often compared to Dvořák [BY WHOM??], as they both reference African American folk music and share a Romantic aesthetic. This concert will showcase the similarities in their sounds, and will explore why a white, male, European has been praised throughout history for his take on “American” music [BY WHOM??], while Florence Price has been continually forgotten and omitted [BY WHOM??].
There’s a good heart here, but the way the writer addressed item #2 is inaccurate and morally flimsy. A responsible storyteller needs to specify who did these things.

What would this paragraph look like if we inserted historical agents?
Florence Price was the first Black woman to have a symphonic work performed by a major symphony orchestra (Chicago Symphony, 1933). Whether through prejudice or ignorance, most conductors have since neglected her music, depriving her and the world of the legacy she deserves. This concert is part of our effort to redress the legacy of pervasive racial and gender inequity they left behind instead.
Here are some key features:
  1. Price’s achievement and stature are maintained.
  2. The comparison to Dvořák becomes a moot point.
  3. The active complicity of just one or two conductors in injustice (e.g., Serge Koussevitzky) is expanded to include the entire industry for decades on end.
  4. The organization is acknowledging its own role in this active complicity.
  5. The organization is openly taking an anti-racist, anti-sexist stance that could be framed in a more intersectional way if the situation warrants—e.g., “legacy of Black women’s oppression they left behind instead.”
  6. No extra research or facts, only a forthright analysis of the broader landscape.

Pianist Lara Downes Finds Survival And Solidaritty In Traditional Freedom Songs With Her Uplifting New Release


Pianist Lara Downes’ uplifting new album Some of These Days (out April 3 on Flipside), revisits freedom songs and Spirituals, historic expressions of hope and courage that remind us — in this time of global unrest and chaos caused by the Coronavirus — of our human capacity for optimism, activism, and unification in the face of crisis. “For me, the motivation in creating this record has always been the relevance and timelessness of these songs," says Downes. "There’s the pain, reaction to oppression, always hope, always a vision of a better place. All of those things are relevant and current today."
Despite the cancellation of her live album release tour, Downes is moving forward to launch this very personal project as a concert live-streamed from her home in California and produced in partnership with public radio nationwide - including her local Capital Public Radio station - raising funds for Feeding America to support emergency relief efforts in response to the Coronavirus outbreak.
Lara's concert will stream via her Facebook Live on April 3 at 5PM Pacific / 8PM Eastern. The 30-minute event will include solo piano performance and words about the importance of these songs and why they are so important today. 
Some Of These Days is a meditation on some of America’s most important songs, its central themes focusing on the shared experiences seen throughout history and resilience of the human condition. Spanning diverse musical traditions including classical, jazz, folk, country and R&B, Lara is joined by Toshi Reagon, PUBLIQuartet, Musicality Vocal, The Chapin Sisters and others, in arrangements by H. T. Burleigh, Florence Price, Margaret Bonds, Billy Taylor, and Lara Downes.   
Listen to “I Wish I Knew How It Would Feel To Be Free” here: 
By looking to the past, we can gain insight and understanding in the present; time and time again we have been faced with challenges to overcome and we have survived. As Downes describes it: “We are strong. We are resourceful. We have come through darkness into light, over and over again. Let’s lean on our ancestors and the lessons they have taught us about hope, courage, and above all unity.” Some of These Days is the embodiment of all that we are feeling, a message beckoning us all to stand together in solidarity.

Thursday, March 26, 2020

Music Kitchen Coronavirus Covid-19 Update

I hope that this message finds you and your family safe and well.  This is certainly a most frightening and uncertain time that we are experiencing in the world amidst the Covid-19 Coronavirus pandemic.  I want you to know that in accordance with CDC guidelines and for the health and safety of our shelter community, artists, partners and the world at large, we are practicing strict social distancing measures and have temporarily suspended our live performances.  However, Music Kitchen has existed for 15 years to bring comfort to those experiencing harsh and unforeseen circumstances and to bring awareness to the most marginalized among us.  And though the former designation now extends to all of us, the reality is that even in this global crisis which has infected hundreds of thousands worldwide, the homeless remain the most vulnerable among us.  The language and the strategies we are employing wholesale as a society – “Stay at home,” “Work from home,” “Drive-through testing,” “Stocking up,” “Buying PPEs,” “Closing non-essential businesses”- already leave those experiencing homelessness at a time like this with fewer options than ever to fight for their survival.  

The shelters and agencies are working very hard to adapt their services, expand accommodation infrastructure and hygiene stations, decreasing population densities to accommodate 6-feet distancing etc.  Music Kitchen is also adapting at this time of trial to continue reaching the people we serve, “Bridging the Distance,” as many of us are doing with our families, friends and colleagues at this time.  Honoring our originally scheduled March 30th performance date, we will be streaming directly to the shelters a curated video of several performances from this last year, including beloved standard repertoire and a couple of inspiring new Forgotten Voices songs.  (Please note that clients at the shelters are also practicing social distancing and will be accessing the content not as a group, but individually.) This will be followed by live interaction via Zoom, with question and answers and I’ll also have my violin handy!  The lemonade we make here is that we have the possibility of reaching a far wider nationwide community with each broadcast of “Music Kitchen Bridging the Distance” and we look forward to bringing the uplifting, healing power of music plus the sustenance of human contact during a time of isolation.

Moving forward, we would also like to share with you, our village of support, some “Music Kitchen Bridging the Distance” broadcasts to give you an unprecedented look at our work inside the shelters, including a few Forgotten Voices songs.  Please stay tuned!

Regarding our world premiere at Carnegie Hall, we are obviously watching and anxiously awaiting the time when we can safely come together in person again.  And when we do so, it will be more important than ever to hear from the Forgotten Voices in our midst.  Please stay tuned.  I know this is also a time of high economic anxiety for so many.  If you have the ability to support us at this time, your support will be critical to help us continue our work and prepare for the future.  Buying a ticket now for our Carnegie concert is another way to support our work and make your voice heard (and if the concert is rescheduled for a date that you’re unavailable, your ticket would be refunded).

I just received word that 2 people at the Olivieri Center which we have served for 15 years have been confirmed infected with Coronavirus and at least one person from the New York City homeless community has died.  Please see below for a brief video message and a Forgotten Voices song which I believe speaks to this moment in a crisis of this magnitude, “These Strings” by Angelica Negron.
"Sometimes even in the darkest moments
when you want to give up hope,
                               these strings bring hope back in." - Shelter Client

We will emerge from this stronger than ever and with greater clarity of passion and purpose.

Thank you for your support of Music Kitchen-Food for the Soul.
Stay safe and be well,

Music Kitchen New York City - Photo by Gregory Routt

Jesse Blumberg, baritone
Kelly Hall-Tompkins, violin
Hector Falcon, violin
Margaret Dyer-Harris, viola
Grace Ho, cello
Logan Coale, double bass

Recent and Upcoming Press

  • Click here for a recent article in World Bride Magazine
  • Sanya-On-Air Podcast (Video/Audio) from 47"
  • Please stay tuned for upcoming stories on WQXR and WCBS radio and Kontrol Magazine

Forgotten Voices World Premiere

Presented in Association with Carnegie Hall

May 21, 2020 @ 7:30

Zankel Hall

Prefer to send a check?
We welcome your checks at the following address:
Music Kitchen - Food for the Soul
Attn: Kelly Hall-Tompkins
P.O. Box 907
New York, NY 10040
Thank you for your support of Music Kitchen -Food for the Soul

Valerie Coleman Named 2020 Classical Woman of the Year by APM's Performance Today

ST. PAUL, Minn., March 26, 2020 Performance Today has named flutist and composer Valerie Coleman as the 2020 Classical Woman of the Year. The honor is granted annually to a woman who has made a significant contribution to classical music as a performer, composer, conductor, music teacher or supporter.

“Valerie is an extraordinary flutist, composer and founder of a groundbreaking ensemble, with an unflagging devotion to teaching and mentorship,” said Fred Child, host of Performance Today. “Our choice was clear. We are proud to name her as this year’s Classical Woman of the Year.”

Coleman will be honored on tomorrow’s episode of Performance Today and she will speak with Child about her extensive career in classical music and pieces on which she’s currently working. Performance Today will air a show focusing on Coleman’s music and performances on Wednesday, April 8.

"I am grateful to Performance Today and its listeners for supporting my music and naming me their Classical Woman of the Year,” said Coleman. “It is a privilege and I hope that my work as a flutist, composer, and educator at the Frost School of Music creates bridges and inspires healing to all who experience it, including the hybrid artists of tomorrow.” 

A GRAMMY-nominated artist, Coleman is the founder and former member of the internationally acclaimed ensemble Imani Winds. She has received many awards and commissions from organizations including Carnegie Hall, American Composers Orchestra and The Library of Congress.

Named one of the “Top 35 Women Composers” by Washington Post, Coleman is widely recognized for her composition “Umoja,” which made its orchestral debut last fall with the Philadelphia Orchestra at Carnegie Hall.

Coleman has dedicated much of her career to making music inclusive and is an advocate and mentor for emerging artists. She joined the faculty of Frost School of Music at the University of Miami in 2018 as Assistant Professor of Performance, Chamber Music and Entrepreneurship. She has led masterclasses across the United States and created the Imani Winds Chamber Music Festival, a New York City program devoted to career development and excellence.

“Professor Coleman is at the forefront and is an exemplar of 21st century musical careers. She is brilliant and renowned as a flute soloist, composer, chamber musician, ensemble leader, and entrepreneur,” said Shelton G. Berg, Dean of the Frost School of Music. “This is the elevated skill set we want for students in the Frost School of Music, and it is the recipe for being named Classical Woman of the Year!”

Coleman was selected by the staff of Performance Today based on listener nominations. Throughout the month of March, listeners submitted nominations of those who inspired them through their contributions to classical music. 

Wednesday, March 25, 2020

Sergio Mims: Watch tenor Levy Sekgapane sing as Count Almaviva in Rossini's The Barber of Seville

THE BARBER OF SEVILLE Rossini – Teatro Municipal de Santiago


Sergio A. Mims writes:

In these trying times I thought you and your readers would love to see the upcoming much acclaimed young South African tenor Levy Sekgapane in this production recorded last year at the the National Opera of Chile of Rossini's The Barber of Seville.

Key to Change: Six Week Intercession: Sign Up Now!

Key to Change is inviting middle and high school students in South King County to take online lessons during a special six week intercession beginning on March 30.  

These video lessons are conducted via Zoom or Google Hangouts to ensure every student receives individualized instruction and feedback.

While many students in our region are on a hiatus from school, we feel it is more important than ever to cultivate a positive and empowering community through music. We are committed to helping our students continue growing as musicians while providing a sense of structure and inspiration amid the evolving COVID-19 outbreak in our region. 
The first 10 students to sign up will receive an additional FREE 30 minute video lesson!

Deeply Rooted Postpones GOSHEN

You are receiving this information due to your past interest in Deeply Rooted Dance Theater and/or arts-related activities in the Chicago area.

Our mailing address is:
Deeply Rooted Dance Theater
17 N State St # 19
19th floor
Chicago, IL 60602-3315

Tuesday, March 24, 2020

RED CLAY DANCE’S “VISIONS & VOICES” GOES VIRTUAL! Rehearsal Footage, Choreographer Interviews and More

To provide audiences with an inside look at the creation and preparation involved in its spring program, Red Clay Dance Company (RCDC) is sharing a series of videos related to its previously scheduled “Visions & Voices,” which intended to consider the question, “How do our bodies manifest the world around and through us?”
 “We are, above all, an arts organization that strives to connect with our community,” said Founder/Artistic Director and artivist Vershawn Sanders-Ward. “We have been working in the studio for several months with guest choreographers Du’Bois A’Keen and Lela Aisha Jones, both of whom have created world premieres, as well as on my own premiere for the company. We are fortunate to have captured much of that creative process on video and now, in lieu of our live performances, can share it with our audiences and supporters.”
RCDC is posting its video series during the next two weeks, culminating with the original performance dates of April 3 and 4. The public may view the following on RCDC’s Facebook and Instagram pages:

  • Tuesday, March 24: RCDC’s Philadelphia residency with Jones, part of the process of creating her world premiere, artistic/soulful labor that expresses dreams for blackness and reciprocity with the natural environment.
  • Friday, March 27: Sanders-Ward’s world premiere FAKE NEWS!, a response to the 2016 “election” that re-examines ideals of capitalism, democracy, immigration and our dangerous obsession with power and media
  • Tuesday, March 31: Jones’ Chicago residency, which took place later in the creation process of we:all ~ gon’ die into revivals
  • Friday, April 3: Footage from RCDC’s 5th Anniversary Paint the Town Red fundraiser, coinciding with the original opening night of “Visions & Voices,” which would have included the Paint the Town Red post-show party fundraiser
  • Saturday, April 4: Short film inside the creative process of A’Keen’s world premiere INCARNATION 1, which explores the body as archive, altar and access point, set in the present-future but experienced in retrospect, caught in time lapse. The work asks: How do we prepare ourselves to be good ancestors? What are we downloading to pass on? The work features music by Kingsley Ibeneche, Moses Sumney, Shake, and Jessie Reyez; Jovan Landry is the filmmaker; and costumes concept is by Cam A’Keen, styled by KFleye.

Anyone who follows RCDC on social media may view the videos at no charge, although the company would appreciate donations to offset the lost ticket revenue. Individuals may donate by texting RCDANCE to 44-321.
Augmenting the video footage are “Choreographer Conversations” with the three choreographers; the conversation with Du’Bois A’Keen is available here; the conversation with Lela Aisha Jones is available here; and the conversation with Vershawn Sanders-Ward will be posted April 7.
For more information about RCDC, visit redclaydance.com.
Red Clay Dance Company lives to awaken “glocal” change through creating, performing, and teaching dances of the African Diaspora—change that transforms cultural and socioeconomic inequities in our local and global community. Founder Vershawn Sanders-Ward conceived the idea of RCDC while on her first trip to Senegal, West Africa, when she became fascinated by the interconnectedness of dance and everyday life. The name Red Clay comes from her childhood memories of playing in red earth during her summers in Mobile, Alabama.
RCDC is supported by the Chicago Community Trust, the Alphawood Foundation, the MacArthur Fund for Arts and Culture at the Richard H Driehaus Foundation, the Lloyd A. Fry Foundation, the Gaylord and Dorothy Donnelley Foundation, the Springboard Foundation, the Polk Bros. Foundation, and the Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events.

Top: Kenesha Reed in INCARNATION 1, photo by Kristie Kahns.
Du'Bois A'Keen courtesy of Du'Bois A'Keen.
Bottom L:  Vershawn Sanders-Ward by Raymond Jerome.
Bottom R: Lela Aisha Jones by Denise Allen.