Tag Archives: Play

Dream Deferred Opens April 20 at 133rd Street Arts Center in Harlem

Written and directed by the award-winning playwright Marcus Dargan, Dream Deferred puts a spotlight on racial tensions and social action, as African-American residents of an apartment building in Harlem struggle against the looming commercial dominance of a newly built condominium, just across the street. Dream Deferred is drawn from Dargan’s conversations and observations of Harlem residents. “It’s a historical document, artistically expressed to reflect the experiences of a people who may someday vanish from Harlem’s landscape without having had their final stories told. This play represents the beginning of their untimely end.”

Dream Deferred will run 13 performances from April 20-29 at the 133rd Street Arts Center located at 308 West 133rd Street in Harlem. General tickets are $20 at the door and are available at the box office one hour before curtain or by calling the box office at 347-855-7281. Advance online tickets are $18 for adults, and $15 for seniors, students, and artists at www.brownpapertickets.com.

For complete ticket and schedule information, visit www.nuafrikantheatre.org/dream-deferred.

Sting performs to a sold out crowd at Harlem’s St. John the Divine, Only U.S. stop

Dec 9, 2009 @ 15:41

By HarlemGal

The largest gothic cathedral in the United States was a musical haven to rock star Sting and a sea of international musicians last night. Sting, who is performing two sold out shows December 8th and 9th at the Cathedral of St. John the Divine, played songs from his latest album called  If on a Winter’s Night …, “a seasonal contemplation mixing traditional English songs and carols with his own The Hounds of Winter and Lullaby for an Anxious Child.” Sting performed about 20 beautiful songs along with two encores to-what I am estimating-a few hundred people, who in my view, came from the tri-state area.

And St. John the Divine was the perfect backdrop for Sting and his musicians. The entire Cathedral looked magical.  My guess is Sting’s production company was filming the entire concert from start to finish. Make-up on the ladies was perfectly done and all of the men and women were dressed in black tie for the camera that was located stage left and roaming.

What was fascinating about the concert was every musicial instrument imaginable was on the stage and played. Some I recognized and some I did not. The women who played the harp was interesting.

As for the music, it was the antithesis of what I have always known about Sting, which is generally rock music and a devout yogi. Sting was more of an opera star last night than a rock star, which goes to show the range of this artist. The music and the venue tied together perfectly. It made me feel like I was watching a performance for the King of England or an episode of Showtime’s The Tudors. It felt majestic, yet most of the songs performed were calming and appropriate for the holiday season. My favorite songs were Christmas at Sea, Ghost Story, which Sting said was about his father, and Lullaby For An Anxious Child. For the Lullaby song, he brought out the Newark Boys Choir on stage. They did a wonderful job singing with Sting and what a great opportunity for them. Way to go Newark Boys Choir!  However, my question for Sting is “why didn’t he use the Harlem Boys Choir to perform with him?” I have no ill will against the Newark Boys Choir, but Sting was technically in Harlem last night. It would have been a nice and a respectful acknowledgment toward the Harlem community. Oh well, maybe next time.

Overall, the show was beautiful and well worth its price. I guess I was one of the few who was able to purchase tickets online in the first nine minutes when they were made available. Apparently, that is how long it took for both shows to sell out.

Fela! on Broadway, musical elements on Harlem’s 116th Street

Dec 1, 2009 @ 0:28

By HarlemGal
On 116th Street from Frederick Douglass Blvd to Lenox Avenue, there is always African music playing throughout the various stores. The music plays just right, not loud. It’s pleasant enough to where you notice and say to yourself, is that Fela! music I hear? If you live or have walked along this portion of Harlem before, you know exactly what I am talking about. It’s this Harlem experience along 116th Street that sparked an interest for me to go see Fela!-the Broadway musical.
I ventured down to the Eugene O’Neill Theater to see the show about legend Kuti in its first week of opening. All I can say right off the top is “this is not your standard musical.” This show ain’t no Mary Poppins or Lion King – quite the contrary. Fela! is a show where you will find yourself saying “yeah, yeah” or moving your hips to three o’clock and nine o’clock at the instruction of the lead actor or wanting to dance or stare in awe at the dancers and their AMAZING bodies. The dancers are spectacular! When you see the show, you will know what I mean by all these descriptions.

img_2629The creme de la creme of Fela! is the lead actor, who sings, dances and plays two different musical instruments, the trumpet and saxophone, in the show. The lead actor sings and plays the saxophone most of the time. The evening I went Sahr Ngaujah was the lead and watching Sahr was pure enjoyment. However, don’t take my word for it. I am just a blogger from Harlem. Read the reviews in New York Magazine about Fela! and decide for yourself. But do take my word that elements of Fela’s music are alive and well along 116th Street in Harlem. See you at the Shrine!

Harlem business owners unite in The Power of One

Nov 28, 2009 @ 16:57
By HarlemGal
One is not the loneliest number that you’ll ever choose, according to several independent Harlem business owners. Maybe in the famous song by Three Dog Night it is? However, it is quite the opposite for those behind The Power of One, a bold, economic action plan spearheaded by Harlem business owners who have come together to promote and support each other and Harlem.
The organization is getting ready to kick-off a major challenge this coming week and they are inviting us to join in now before they make the official announcement. How can we partner with The Power of One? This is how. Buy the Power of One card for $1.00 by clicking here, become a community investor and receive discounts, VIP access, and other perks from the pioneering businesses when you spend and play in Harlem. The organization created a challenge, which is to raise $1,000,000 over the next six months, selling one Power of One card at a time
“The Power of One is Harlem’s own bailout plan and it will encourage people to think about where their money is going, and commit to spending a portion of it locally,” the organization said in a news release. “In the last year, 40 percent of local Harlem businesses have closed. When you spend your money at a  store not local to the community, that money leaves the neighborhood, but when you spend it with a local business, the money is reinvested into your community…”
HarlemCondoLife couldn’t agree more and apparently the Harlem residents and affiliate members in the video below do as well. Let’s help out. Go buy your Power of One card today!