As a southern lady, I grew up on sweet potato pie. My maternal grandmother would purchase the frozen pies (which were pretty good) and my paternal grandmother would make them from scratch (which were pretty great). I will admit to not knowing the 1st thing about making one, but they are still one of my favorite desserts.
Before you ask, yes I am well aware of Ms. Patti’s sweet potato pie and was tempted to look for one. However they are made with nuts and I am highly allergic. Until I find an alternative, I will make myself content by listening to Ray Charles and James Taylor sing about Sweet Potato Pie.
We are counting down the hours before the “big” day and I’m moving through my Thanksgiving playlist. Today I am delighted to share one of my favorite songs of all time, If I Ain’t Got You by Alicia Keys. The one thing I know for sure is all that I have would absolutely mean nothing if I had no one to share my triumphs and setbacks with. For this I’m truly grateful.
Happy Saturday and welcome to Brooklyn Legends Brunch With the Arts. If you haven’t heard the news, The Wiz is coming to NBC on Thursday, December 3rd and I am so excited. I have fond memories of my mother taking me to see The Wiz twice during its Broadway run. Each time we sat close to the front and I was ecstatic to hear Stephanie Mills sing her heart out (as my younger self-described it). She was awesome. After my second visit, I knew that I wanted to be just like her. There was one huge challenge – I could not sing; but I could dream. Stephanie’s performance in The Wiz catapulted her onto the world stage. Today she is an accomplished award-winning singer, actress and songwriter. I am also pleased to add that she is from Brooklyn, New York.
The Wiz Logo- NBC.com
This week I have seen brief clips of The Wiz and what I’ve heard is pure magic. Stephanie Mills stars as Auntie Em and beautiful rising star Shanice Williams stars as Dorothy. I was so impressed to see Stephanie serve as a powerful mentor to Shanice throughout this production.
This newly created version is filled with star power. I know that we can count on Queen Latifah, Mary J. Blige, David Alan Grier, Ne-Yo, Elijah Kelley, Uzo Aduba, Amber Riley, Common, and Cirque du Soleil to shine brightly in their roles. What a wonderful way to usher in the holiday season.
For today’s post, I am pleased to share clips from The Wiz for you to enjoy. Thank you for spending part of your day with us.
I hope that you are having a sensational day! On Saturday October 10th we shared the exciting news of A Ballerina’s Tale the documentary chronicling Misty Copeland’s career as a ballet dancer. This eagerly anticipated movie, written and directed by Nelson George, made its public debut on Wednesday, October 14th. If you missed Brooklyn Legends Brunch with the Arts – A Ballerina’s Tale please follow thislink.
I have seen the movie twice and I am in awe of Misty Copeland’s determination and the sensitive manner in which Nelson George shared her story with us. Misty’s career trajectory took many twists and turns and she paid a tremendous price for her achievements just as you and I have. I also remember a conversation with a good friend around the challenges we often face when shaping our careers and the misperceptions many have around “success” and it comes down to this –the world doesn’t see your struggle, they only see your shine. Perhaps we need to tell our stories more often.
On Monday, October 12th, two days before the movie’s public debut, the 92nd Street Y hosted a screening of A Ballerina’s Tale followed by a discussion with Misty Copeland, Nelson George and Gayle King. For today’s Brooklyn Legends Bruch With the Arts, I am pleased to share this conversation with you.
I hope that you are enjoying the beautiful fall weather and our first holiday weekend since Labor Day. I welcome the down time from the hustle and bustle of my daily commute and, most important of all, I look forward to connecting with you.
Nelson George and Misty Copeland Credit Alex Welsh, The New York Times
On Wednesday, October 7th, the New York Times featured an article on Misty Copeland and Nelson George’s upcoming film “A Ballerina’s Tale,” which opens in theaters, and on demand, on Wednesday, October 14th.
This summer Ms. Copeland was promoted to principal dancer for the American Ballet Theater, a historic first for an African-American woman. Ironically she and Nelson George began filming “A Ballerina’s Tale” two years before this moment unfolded.
Misty was recovering from an injury she sustained when work began on the project. They met at a dinner party years ago and a chance seating arrangement was the spark that led to their collaboration.
Nelson George is a highly esteemed writer and filmmaker who is known for his work on hip-hop and African-American culture. In the New York Times article he candidly shares that he did not start out with an agenda (for the film). To use his words, “We didn’t know what was going to happen, but I knew she was going to get back onstage,” he said. He added: “I feel she’s the first big ballet pop star since Baryshnikov.”
I’m excited to be a part of this moment in history and I look forward to Monday evening. In the meantime, please enjoy Brooklyn Legends Brunch with the Arts and the trailer from “A Ballerina’s Tale.”
Credit: The New York Times, Oct. 7, 2015 Gia Kourlas
We hope that you have enjoyed our posts on the work and career of acclaimed artist and photographer Lorna Simpson.
In the coming days, we will share our last installment – for now – of Ms. Simpson’s great work. Remember, what we have shared with you these past few weeks is only a glimpse of her career that spans several decades.
Today we thought you might enjoy this video of Ms. Simpson’s Tedx Met Talk from last year.
Remember, it starts with a dream so stay inspired. Stay tuned for the rest of the story. As always, please remember to tell us what you think.
Throughout this month, we will share highlights of the amazing work of renown Brooklyn artist and photographer, Lorna Simpson.
The world was exposed to Lorna Simpson’s brilliance in the mid-1980s. During this period in her life, she would create large-scale photograph-and-text-works that confronted and challenged narrow, conventional views of gender, identity, culture, history and memory.
Lorna Simpson – You’re Fine 1988
Lorna Simpson – Deutsche Bank – Art Mag. 72
Lorna Simpson – Stereo Style – 1988
With the African-American woman as a visual point of departure, Simpson uses the figure to examine the ways in which gender and culture shape the interactions, relationships and experiences of our lives in contemporary multi-racial America.
For this first installment of our spotlight on Lorna Simpson, I thought you might enjoy hearing from the artist, in her own words, Value of My Work. Stay tuned for updates. As always, we welcome your thoughts. Please let us know what you think.
This TALD Short Shot is related to the epic new documentary film, THROUGH A LENS DARKLY: BLACK PHOTOGRAPHERS AND THE EMERGENCE OF A PEOPLE, by director Thomas Allen Harris, writer Don Perry, producer Dr. Deborah Willis, Executive Producers Kimberly Steward & John Singleton.
The film made its World Premiere @ Sundance; International Premiere @ Berlin; and won the Social Justice Award @ Santa Barbara Int’l FF and Programmers’ Best Documentary Award @ Pan African FF. It was just nominated for Best Diaspora Documentary Film for the 10th Annual African Movie Academy Awards. The film will be released theatrically by Zeitgeist Films, beginning with a New York premiere at Film Forum, Aug. 27th to Sep. 9th. For more info and trailer: http://1World1Family.me