Walter’s World: Weekend Picks- Song, Dance, and Bearden- Paris Blues Revisited

October 6, 2011

By Walter Rutledge

Lillias White at Aaron Davis Hall

Broadway star and Tony Award-winning singer and actress Lillias White will perform in concert, for the first time, at Aaron Davis Hall 7 p.m. Friday, November 4. This concert starts the cavalcade of stars appearing at CCNY for the yearlong season of activities billed “All That’s City. In addition to Ms. White, other headliners include: the Harlem Symphony Orchestra (November 12), award-winning author Edwidge Danticat (November 18) and the mother and daughter team of jazz divas Carmen Bradford and Melba Joyce (December 16). For more information on “All That’s City,” including all the performances, show times and ticket information, please call (212) 650-6900 or visit: Aaron Davis Hall is located at West 135th Street and Convent Avenue.

The Denise Jefferson Celebration 2011!

Will take place Saturday and Sunday, November 5th and 6th, 8pm at the Ailey Citigroup Theater 55th Street at the corner of 9th Ave. The evening dedicated to the legacy of Denise Jefferson, Director of The Ailey School for 26 years, featuring performances by The Francesca Harper Project and special guest artists including, Tony Award Winner LaChanze, The Francesca Harper Project, Ronald K. Brown, Tony Award Nominee Karine Plaintadit, Pulitzer Prize winning writer Margo Jefferson, Aubrey Lynch, Fana Fraser, Daniel Gwirtzman, Lilli-Anne Tai, and Elisa Monte Dance. The event will feature works by William Forsythe, Nacho Duato, Jessica Lang, and Darrell Moultrie.

All ticket holders (both nights) are invited after Saturday night November 5th performance to the Contemporary African Art Gallery located at 330 West 108th Street at Riverside Drive to celebrate the life of Ms. Jefferson. A portion of the proceeds from the event will be used in support of Dance Education. Tickets are $50 and $30 children/students/dancers with valid ID and are available at Smarttix.

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Paris Blues Revisited: Romare Bearden, Albert Murray and Sam Shaw

Jazz at Lincoln Center, and the Romare Bearden Foundation are pleased to present this exhibition as part of the yearlong 100th anniversary celebration of Bearden’s birth. It is on view from September 24 through February 28 at 
The Peter Jay Sharp Arcade in the
Frederick P. Rose Hall, the home of Jazz at Lincoln Center in Columbus Circle. The free exhibit is open to the public: 
Tuesday through Sunday from 10 am to 4 pm and 6pm to 11 pm., and 
Monday from 6pm to 11 pm.

The exhibit is designed as a book-on-the-wall; Paris Blues Revisited presents fine reproductions of collages by Romare Bearden, writing by longtime Bearden friend Albert Murray and photographs by Sam Shaw. Following the Shaw-produced film Paris Blues, these three men decided to improvise their own Paris Blues – a collaborative picture-and-writing book celebrating Paris as well as Duke Ellington, co-composer Billy Strayhorn of the movie’s soundtrack and Louis Armstrong, one of that movie’s stars. That book was never completed. Here, for the first time, finished pages, some of them unmistakable masterworks, as well as works-in-progress make clear the power of jazz to inspire collaborations of long-lasting beauty. For more information, please visit The art work used in this article is an original work and is a collaboration by artist Romare Bearden, photographer Sam Shaw and writer Albert Murray: Art© Romare Bearden Foundation/Licensed by VAGA, New York, NY.

Purelements: An Evolution of Dance

The company celebrates their fifth anniversary this week with two performances on Friday December 4 and Saturday December 5, 7:30 pm at the Kumble Theater for the Performing Arts located on the downtown campus of Long Island University. The performances will showcase works from the company’s five-year repertoire and will also feature two company premieres, and four world premieres/ works in progress. The dances are examples of the varied and eclectic signature company style, which melds modern, ballet, jazz, spoken word and dance theatre elements.

This rich choreographic tapestry has enthralled audiences since the very beginning. Strong performers, striking production elements and an ever-evolving commitment to community enlightenment have helped Purelements build a loyal following; and the three hundred-seat, state of the art Kumble Theater for the Performing Arts will provide an intimate setting for the company. Tickets are $25 and group purchases are available. Tickets can be purchased at Kumble Box Office and for more information visit and This is an interview on Harlem World Radio with co-artistic directors Kevin Joseph and Lakai Worrell

These are just a few of the events happening around the city and in the community. As always, thank you for letting me share my world with you.

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