As part of its inaugural Locally Grown Festival Theater J is presenting the world premiere of The Hampton Years. Written by Jacqueline E. Lawton and directed by Shirley Serotsky, The Hampton Years explores the development of African-American artists, John Biggers and Samella Lewis while under the tutelage of Austrian Jewish refugee painter and educator, Viktor Lowenfeld during their time at Hampton Institute – now Hampton University – during WWII. As the play unfolds it reveals the dreams and travails of young artists in a still segregated society while examining the impact of World War II on a Jewish immigrant and his wife finding shelter in the US and his controversial influence in shaping the careers of African American students. The Hampton Years runs through June 30.
Archive for festival
This year’s Smithsonian Folklife Festival kicks off with the free “Bring Back the Funk” concert presented by The National Museum of African American History and Culture on the National Mall, Wednesday, June 27, from 6 pm to 9 pm in the Festival’s “Panorama Room” performance tent between 12th and 14th Streets. “Bring Back the Funk” will open the Folklife Festival’s evening concert series and will take place within view of the future site of the museum. Music legend George Clinton will be joined by Meshell Ndegeocello, Ivan Neville and Dumpstaphunk. Tom Joyner who will serve as emcee for this summer spectacular. The concert is part of a year-long series of events celebrating the groundbreaking of The National Museum of African American History and Culture and Black Music Month.
The Maru Montero Dance Company will host its 20th Annual National Cinco de Mayo Festival on Saturday, May 5, 2012 at the Sylvan Stage on the National Mall to celebrate Latin American dance, music and crafts. Although a Mexican celebration in origin, the Cinco de Mayo Festival has become a larger “Latin American Family Reunion” according to organizers. The anticipated festival provides an opportunity to explore the rich history, culture and ethnic diversity that is the foundation of Latin Americans in the United States. The Festival is Free and open to all, the event will be held rain or shine and everyone is encouraged to attend. Activities begin at noon and run until 6:00pm.
Nine months before President Lincoln’s Emancipation Proclamation, on April 16, 1862, he signed the Compensated Emancipation Act, granting freedom to 3,100 enslaved persons in the District of Columbia. The Compensated Emancipation Act was a significant step in ending the institution of slavery in the United States. Since 2005 the District of Columbia has commemorated this day with an official public holiday – DC Emancipation Day. To mark the 150th anniversary of the signing of the Compensated Emancipation Act a number of educational and cultural events will take place throughout the city. Signature events taking place April 11 – April 16 include a parade, film screening, special exhibitions and a “Great Debate” Saturday, April 14 at the Lincoln Theater hosted by C.B. Homes and participants including Rev. Al Sharpton and the provocative thought leader, activist and author Dr. Michael Eric Dyson. Get more details about upcoming Emancipation Day events here.
If you are a fan of art, music and literature than the District of Columbia abounds with fantastic opportunities to indulge this weekend, September 24 and 25. During the day the Library of Congress will be hosting its annual National Book Festival. This festival brings the nation’s best authors, illustrators, and poets to Washington to discuss their work and meet their fans. This year’s lineup includes Eugene Robinson, Terry McMillan, Terrance Hayes and the literary legend Toni Morrison. View a complete schedule of authors, activities and signings here.
For culture vultures who prefer their art and music at night on September 24 DC will have its first Nuit Blanche | Art All Night. This event is an all night exploration of contemporary art stretching from Chinatown to Shaw. Hosted in traditional and nontraditional spaces, events will take place from 7pm – 3am. Constant updates to the schedule are being posted here.
This summer the Atlas Theater Summer Film Series continues to sizzle. Since June the series has offered a wonderful variety of films for everyone. Films are screen Thursday (gay themed), Friday (musicals), Saturday (family), and Sunday (Spike Lee joints). Upcoming films include Paris Is Burning, Michael Jackson: This Is It, Crooklyn and the very fitting classic for DC this summer Do the Right Thing. View the complete schedule and get your tickets here.
The DC Hip-Hop Theater Festival celebrates its 10th anniversary July 11 through July 16 at various venues around Washington including Arena Stage and the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts Millennium Stage. The festival features some of the very best expressions of hip hop art, music, dance and word. Highlighting the festival this year is two performances of Marc Bamuthi Joseph’s new piece Word Becomes Flesh Friday and Saturday, July 15 and 16 at 8pm, at Dance Place, 3225 8th St NE, Washington, DC. View a complete listing of shows here.