I may be the only middle-aged Black man in Minnesota who has not seen the epic motion picture The Color Purple in its entirety. I may, in fact, be the only one in the Midwest.
However, after attending the opening night of the musical adapted from the book by Alice Walker, I feel like I was there in the place and time period, Georgia 1909-1949, that the play covered. It even took me back to the time and place portrayed in the scene titled “African Homeland.” Continue Reading →
It might be hard to believe that Jennifer Lopez hasn’t published a book before now. Continue Reading →
Jason Sole realized he had become a statistic when he was convicted for a felony for the third time. Continue Reading →
Keith felt fairly breezy, free and easy, striding out into the midnight air. Looking for someplace else to go. Minneapolis was a shoe box. You could fit all of downtown in one corner of Greenwich Village. Continue Reading →
Jazz is an important part of America’s musical history. Furthermore, jazz and Detroit historically have been linked, where legendary giants made the city a required stop in their musical tours over the years — some even got their starts there as well. Continue Reading →
Happy New Year everyone, and best wishes for 2015!
Through the years, I’ve always admired the special loyalty and relentless commitment that artists apply to their craft. With this idea in mind, I sat myself down and wrote this column about what I found to be some of the most fascinating songs/albums/artists/concerts of 2014. Continue Reading →
Keith had always known New York wasn’t really Lesli’s kind of town. So far as he thought, it was a case of the other shoe dropping. She had, he guessed, got over the mystique. Continue Reading →
Aimee K. Bryant, T. Mychael Rambo, Regina Marie Williams, Gary Hines a few of the local greats in new production at Park Square Theatre
Easily one of the best known and most beloved titles in American lit, Alice Walker’s famed, historic novel The Color Purple dominated the best-seller list, was made into a hit movie and bowed as a Broadway musical in 2005 with a book by Pulitzer Prize winning White playwright Marsha Norman (’Night Mother, The Secret Garden). It’ll receive nothing short of top-shelf in a new production of the musical at St. Paul’s renowned Park Square Theatre with ace actor Aimee K. Bryant starring as Celie, the cruelly abused child bride whose arduous ordeal on her way to fully realized womanhood is, a word, heartrending. Ironically, Bryant, whose broad range has marked a strong career (Guthrie Theater, Children’s Theatre Company, Penumbra Theatre), didn’t even think she’d be cast — except maybe in the ensemble: “I thought I’d be in the Trio, one of the background members.” Had it not been for determination, she wouldn’t be in the show at all. “I couldn’t get any appointment to audition. Continue Reading →
Jazz is an important part of America’s musical history. Or, as saxophonist Joshua Redman aptly notes, it is “America’s classical music.”
“Jazz music is America’s original art form,” states Jason Tinsley, a board member for the Detroit Jazz Festival (DJF), held annually on Labor Day weekend. The four-day jazz fest, which takes over the city’s downtown riverfront area and annually features such big names on stage as Ramsey Lewis and Wayne Shorter among others, fits nicely in “the time-honored tradition of passing the jazz vocabulary from one generation to the next.”
Fans also get up close to hear and speak to artists in the “Jazz Talk Tent” as well as attend post-event late night jam sessions — all free to the public. “A lot of hard working individuals have put their money up to make sure we do this
festival free,” adds Tinsley, a DTE Energy executive — his company is among the festival’s key corporate sponsors. “The jazz fest is a unique brand that sometimes comes under the radar compared to pop music. Continue Reading →
Helen’s play was fortified by her full court press, appealing to Scott’s first and last concern, turning a dollar. And this promised to, indeed, pull in a handsome buck. Keith was hardly averse to making a sweet living and, accordingly, heard his agent out. If Scott got him to sign on, Helen would sign with Scott and so would the kid. That would mean representing heavy-hitting clients. Continue Reading →