Kay Bourne Arts Report – Issue #31

Contents

A POET’S HONOR IS FROM THE HEART

THE TRANSCENDENCE OF ALICE COLTRANE

PEABODY-ESSEX MUSEUM COMES ALIVE DAY AND NIGHT

YOUR FIRED!

SPANISH NARNIA . . . ONLY BETTER

UP-COMING EVENTS


A POET’S HONOR IS FROM THE HEART

by Kay Bourne

(pictured: Askia Toure)

8ca36e5e5e0e196dd586fea0f614658c.87.124 Kay Bourne Arts Report   Issue #31Poet/activist Askia Toure will be honored by this year’s African American Theatre Festival in a dramatic way.

For one performance only, Our Place Theater Company actors will perform ten poems from Toure’s newest book, “Mother Earth Responds,” which hits the stands in the weeks to come, following the opening of the festival. The author told KBAR, however, that he hopes to have advance copies of the collection available for sale that day in the lobby of the Stanford Calderwood Theatre Pavilion of the Boston Center for the Arts, where the festival takes place.

The “Ode To Askia Toure,” this Saturday afternoon at 2 pm, is directed by Kortney Adams and Jacqui Parker, the founder of the festival and the artistic director of Our Place Theater Co. which puts the festival on. The choreopoems star Melanee Addison and Alphonzo Moultried and feature dance artists Just-Us with Lorenzo Hooker, Isiah Beasley, and Ka-Leen Harrison. (For ticket costs and reservations for this and other festival performances click here or phone 617-933-8600.)

Toure said that he loves Parker’s idea to incorporate dance into the staging of the poems, a style reminiscent of traditional African theater. He noted that the subject matter of the 54 poems in the book is “the sacredness of the planet and of natural life.” It also honors indigenous people, “to remind us that we didn’t come into the earth riding on a jet plane.”

Toure is one of the pioneers of the Black Arts/Black Aesthetics Movement and of the Africana Studies Movement. In the mid 60′s, Toure taught African History in the first Africana Studies program at a major university, San Francisco State University. Among his fellow professors were celebrated writers Amiri Baraka and Sonia Sanchez. The program was guided by Dr. Nathan Hare, who later became head of the department that evolved from those classes.

In letters, Toure is a co-founder of the Black Arts Movement, a renaissance of poetry and drama that flourished in the 60′s and 70′s. Internationally acclaimed, he is featured in many anthologies and has five books to his name, including “From the Pyramids to the Projects,” the 1989 American Book Award for Literature. His most recent volume “Dawnsong!” was awarded the Stephen Henderson Poetry Award from the African American Literature and Culture Society, an affiliate of the American Literature Association.

The 7th annual African American Theatre Festival opens January 26 with the drama “From the Mississippi Delta” by Endesha Ida Mae Holland. Co-directed by Valencia Hughes-Imani and Jacqui Parker, it features Parker, Valerie Lee, and Nicole Parker. It runs for 10 performances intermittent with Jeff Stetson’s “The Meeting” which imagines a meeting between the Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr. and Malcolm X. Directed by Eric Coleman, the cast includes Michael Green, Lawrence Winslow, and Ron Wilks.

African American Theatre Festival ticket information


THE TRANSCENDENCE OF ALICE COLTRANE

by Soul Brown

(pictured: Alice Coltrane)

8286875c8d92cefc18b4c4c29f711d8f.124.99 Kay Bourne Arts Report   Issue #31“People reach the same end by making a similar discovery at the same time.”—John Coltrane

The Transcendence of Alice Coltrane (Turiyasangitananda)

There is only light. . .

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