Bernice Johnson Reagon, a scholar, singer, song leader, composer, activist for over half a century, has been a profound contributor to African-American and American culture. Born in Southwest Georgia, her repertoire is grounded in her experiences in church, school, and political activism. As a composer, she has created a narrative inspired by activism through her songs and larger compositions.
Reagon performed as a member of the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC) Freedom Singers during the sixties. She also founded an all-women a capella ensemble, The Harambee Singers, during the Black Cultural Movement in addition to founding and leading the internationally acclaimed Sweet Honey in the Rock for thirty years until her retirement. Paralleling her work in music, Reagon is one of the leading authorities in African-American cultural history. In addition, Reagon is a recipient of the Heinz Award for Arts and Humanities, MacArthur Fellowship, Presidential Medal, and Charles E. Frankel Prize for Contributions to the Public Understanding of Humanities.
This concert will feature performances by Reagon, Toshi Reagon, Helga Davis, Randy Jeter, Karma Mayet Johnson, Marcelle Davies Lashley, Josette Newsam Marchak and Jason C. Walker!
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The Schomburg Center’s Women’s Jazz Festival 2016 is curated by Toshi Reagon, singer, composer, producer and activist.
Schomburg Society Members: $25, General Admission: $30
Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture, The New York Public Library
515 Malcolm X Boulevard, New York, NY 10037, www.schomburgcenter.org
Photo credit: Composer, songleader, scholar and producer Dr. Bernice Johnson Reagon Tuesday, Feb. 1, 2011 in Washington. (Sharon Farmer/sfphotoworks)