Recent Articles

James on Jazz: Savor outdoor jazz fests while you can!


Get ready to make some noise, people! No one can say the Twin Cities doesn’t have it going on when it comes to hosting successful and long running jazz festivals. Two annual jazz festivals are happening over the next two Saturdays in the Twin Cities and at the same time, continuing to grow the audience for jazz.

First up is the Selby Avenue Jazz Festival, which takes place on September 12 (11 am – 8 pm); and next weekend it’s the Freedom Jazz and Art Festival, September 19 (12 pm – 6 pm). Both festivals are free and open to the public and can boast over 10+ years of history in the making. Continue Reading →

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‘Carter High’ film aims to be more than a typical sports story

Carter High opens nationally October 30.

Carter High, based on a true story about the 1988 Dallas Carter High School Cowboys, is set for national release October 30.

The film, which stars Charles S. Dutton, Vivica A. Fox, Pooch Hall and David Banner, was screened at the 2015 National Association of Black Journalists annual convention in Minneapolis last month. The movie tells the story of several members of the Carter football team who went on a crime spree after a state championship season in the 1980s. Continue Reading →

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‘Akeelah and the Bee,’ encouraging message marred in formulaic dialogue

Johannah Easley and Zaria Graham by Dan Norman

A cast top-loaded with Penumbra Theatre veterans James A. Williams, Aimee K. Bryant and Greta Oglesby, along with Shawn Hamilton (Guthrie Theater/Penumbra /Mixed Blood Theatre), showcases a knockout turn by supporting actor ShaVunda Horsley as the delightfully devilish Rachet Rhonda, and one auspiciously gifted Johannah Easley in the title role. Continue Reading →

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