Black History Month Extravaganza 2008

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From eyewitness accounts of the Civil War and the speeches of Abe Lincoln, from ragtime to jazz to hip hop DJ’s, our two concerts and two plays have got it all, with hot hors d’oeuvres included! You won’t want to miss this event!

The Department of Music and Drama at Prairie View A&M University announces our Black History Month Extravaganza: two exciting and entirely different evenings of music, and theatre and receptions in one week.

Tuesday, February 19 begins at 5:00 p.m. with a catered reception, followed at 6:00 with a concert: A Little Joplin, featuring the ragtime music of Scott Joplin. Hear ragtime favorites such as The Maple Leaf Rag and Solace performed by pianists Vicki Seldon and Holly Svec. Performances by The PVAMU Brass Ensemble and the PVAMU Marimba Ensemble will include the famous rags The Entertainer, Cascades, and The Ice Cream Rag. Bass-baritone instructor Leon Turner and the PV Concert Chorale will be featured in two dramatic, fully staged scenes from Joplin’s ragtime opera Treemonisha, which won the composer a posthumous Pulitzer Prize.

At 7:00, the Gilpin Players present the play Unheard Voices: the slave narratives, based on interviews of former slaves and their children by the Federal Writer’s Project during the early 1930s. Be present as the Gilpin Players bring to life the rich history, the wonderful people and the powerful emotions of the turbulent times before and during the Civil War. From Ella Washington being “refugeed” to Texas to Mrs. Lou Griffin remembering Abraham Lincoln speaking to the people in her town, from Jasper Battle’s slave wedding to Frank Cooper getting a “taste of slave days” from his grandmother, life on the plantation was anything but easy. Laugh and cry with the stories and songs from “that now gone, if not forgotten slave day.”

On Thursday, February 21, after the catered reception at 5:00, the concert will be A Little Jazz, featuring the Prairie View A&M Jazz Ensemble, and the Robert Sanders Trio in a program of straight-ahead jazz. The eight-member Jazz Ensemble will play Tune Rad and more. The Robert Sanders Trio, a professional ensemble of piano, bass and drums, will play jazz standards as well as Sanders’ original tunes An Essence of Love and A Red Approach.

At 7:00, the Gilpin Players present Evolution Mixed Tape Volume I, a choreopoem, an original play by PV theatre instructor Ricjuane Jenkins which chronicles two DJ’s and their radio show in a wild mix of music, poetry and dance, a startling glimpse into the world of the hip hop generation.

Tickets, which include the reception, concert, and play for one night, are $20 for adults and $10 for students. Tickets may be purchased in advance from the Department of Music and Drama 936-261-3335 or 936-261-3307, or they can be purchased at the door on the night of the performances.

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