Tag: Harlem

Intersection in Harlem Renamed in Honor of Acting Legends and Activists Ruby Dee and Ossie Davis

Ossie Davis and Ruby Dee (photo via Facebook)

According to New York Amsterdam News, on Saturday the northeast corner of 123rd Street and Saint Nicholas Avenue in Harlem was renamed in honor of famed acting and civil rights couple Ossie Davis and Ruby Dee (Purlie Victorious, Countdown At Kusini, Do The Right Thing, Jungle Fever).

The Dwyer Cultural Center hosted the ceremonial unveiling of ‘Ruby Dee Place’ and ‘Ossie Davis Way’. Dee and Davis’ children, Nora Day Hasna Muhammad and Guy Davis, attended the event, as did the Rev. Al Sharpton, former New York City mayor David Dinkins, Assemblywoman Inez Dickens and State Sen. Brian Benjamin.

The Dwyer opened its gallery to the public to view an exhibit dedicated to Dee and Davis with numerous storyboards displayed related to the work of the couple and Cliff Frazier. The public also participated in a community mosaic mural.

To learn more about Dee and Davis’ lives, work, philanthropy and scholarships, go to: https://ossieandruby.com or follow @EverythingOssieandRuby

Or check out their story in their own words:

To see video of the street re-naming, watch below:

Professor Farah Jasmine Griffin to Chair Columbia University’s Newly-Created African American and African Diaspora Studies Department

Professor Farah Jasmine Griffin (photo via goodreads.com)

via jbhe.com

The Columbia University board of trustees recently approved the creation of a new African American and African Diaspora Studies Department. Professor Farah Jasmine Griffin, the William B. Ransford Professor of English and Comparative Literature and African American Studies, has been appointed as the chair of the new department.

“Now, more than ever, we need to have both an understanding of that history, but we also need to understand the ways that history contributes to a sense of possibility and vision for the future,”said Dr. Griffin. “Even though we are later than many of our peers, the creation of this department at Columbia is right on time because our nation and our world need the kind of knowledge we produce.”

In 1993, long before there was a centralized department for African studies, Dr. Manning Marable established the Institute for Research in African American Studies (IRAAS) at Columbia. The institute has brought together scholars from a variety of disciplines and continues to bridge scholarship, teaching, and public life. Once the new department has been created, the IRAAS will continue to conduct research.

Now that the department has been approved, Columbia plans to hire new faculty who are experts in the field of African American and African diaspora studies and create a Ph.D. program to produce additional innovative scholarship.

Additionally, the school recognizes the significance of being located in Harlem, a center of Black cultural life in the United States, and plans to collaborate with the surrounding community.

“Departments and academic institutions don’t produce knowledge for the moment, they produce knowledge for the long term,” said Dr. Griffin, who also serves as director of the IRAAS. “Creating a new department is an investment in producing knowledge that is valuable for our country at any time, but especially at this moment, as it reminds us of a historical legacy as well as a vision of America that we need to engage more now than ever.”

Dr. Griffin holds a bachelor’s degree from Harvard University, a Ph.D. from Yale University, and has authored several books including “Who Set You Flowin’?”: The African-American Migration Narrative (Race and American Culture), and If You Can’t Be Free, Be a Mystery: In Search of Billie Holiday.

Source: https://www.jbhe.com/2018/12/columbia-university-approves-an-african-american-and-african-diaspora-studies-department/

Ava Duvernay, Alfre Woodard, Spike Lee and More Recreate Iconic ‘Great Day In Harlem’ Portrait

"A Great Day in Hollywood"
(Photo by Kwaku Alston)

by Shamika Sanders via blackamericaweb.com

Netflix re-imagines the iconic A Great Day in Harlem” photo that captured 57 notable jazz musicians in front of a Harlem brownstone. XXL Magazine did the same with their “A Great Day In Hip-Hop” cover in 1999 featuring artists like Run of Run DMC, Busta Rhymes and other hip-hop notables of the era.

Netflix’s homage to the famous photo features 47 creative and talented behind 20+ original shows/films/documentaries. A 60-second video of the event, directed by Lacey Duke, premieres during the BET Awards.

“It was a pretty magical couple of hours,” Duke said in the official release. “All these amazingly talented, beautiful individuals in one space being supportive and just looking stunning together, all here to pull off this one take wonder! Alfre Woodard even lead everyone in an epic rendition of ‘Lift Every Voice and Sing’ before we started shooting. It was beautiful, and in a flash it was over. It was probably the most overwhelming two hours of my career haha. I was just so happy to be a part of history.”

To see and learn more about the original photo, click here.

To see a list of who in Black Hollywood is in the picture above, scroll down:

  • Ava Duvernay (13th, Central Park Five)
  • Spike Lee (She’s Gotta Have It)
  • Alfre Woodard (Luke Cage; Juanita)
  • Gabrielle Dennis (Luke Cage)
  • Simone Missick (Luke Cage)
  • Cheo Hodari Coker (Luke Cage)
  • Mike Colter (Luke Cage)
  • Antonique Smith (Luke Cage)
  • Mustafa Shakir (Luke Cage)
  • Vaneza Oliveira (3%)
  • Russell Hornsby (Seven Seconds)
  • Priah Ferguson (Stranger Things)
  • Caleb McLaughlin (Stranger Things)
  • Lena Waithe (Master of None; Dear White People; Step Sisters)
  • Chante Adams (Roxanne Roxanne)
  • Nia Long (Roxanne Roxanne, Dear White People)
  • Justin Simien (Dear White People)
  • Logan Browning (Dear White People)
  • Nia Jervier (Dear White People; Step Sisters)
  • Antoinette Robertson (Dear White People)
  • DeRon Horton (Dear White People)
  • Ashley Blaine Featherson (Dear White People)
  • Marque Richardson (Dear White People; Step Sisters)
  • Hayley Law (Altered Carbon; Riverdale)
  • Rev Run (All About The Washingtons)
  • Justine Simmons (All About The Washingtons)
  • Dawn Porter (Bobby Kennedy for President)
  • Kat Graham (The Holiday Calendar; How It Ends)
  • Quincy Brown (The Holiday Calendar)
  • Sydelle Noel (GLOW)
  • Britney Young (GLOW)
  • Kia Stevens (GLOW)
  • DeRay Davis (How To Act Black)
  • Sierra Capri (On My Block)
  • Brett Gray (On My Block)
  • Laverne Cox (Orange is the New Black)
  • Danielle Brooks (Orange is the New Black)
  • Alisha Boe (13 Resons Why)
  • Samantha Logan (13 Reasons Why)
  • Ajiona Alexus (13 Reasons Why
  • Derek Luke (13 Reasons Why)
  • Steven Silver (13 Reasons Why)
  • Yance Ford (Strong Island)
  • Kano (Top Boy)
  • Marlon Wayans (Naked; Woke-ish)
  • Rapsody (Rapture)
  • Sacha Jenkins (Rapture)

Source: https://blackamericaweb.com/2018/06/24/ava-duvernay-spike-lee-more-recreate-iconic-great-day-in-harlem-portrait/

Jerrod Carmichael to Adapt Dapper Dan’s Upcoming Memoir for Sony Pictures

Jerrod Carmichael (left), Dapper Dan (Courtesy of NBCUniversal; Jon Wes)

by Mia Galuppo via hollywoodreporter.com

The life of Dapper Dan — the godfather of hip-hop fashion, who dressed everyone from LL Cool J to Jay Z — is coming to the big screen.

Sony is developing a biopic based on Dapper Dan’s upcoming memoir (due out in 2019 via Random House), which will be adapted by Jerrod Carmichael. Set in Harlem, the feature is described as a “high-stakes coming-of-age story.”

Carmichael, who is best known as the creator and star of the NBC critical darling The Carmichael Show, will also produce alongside Josh Bratman of Immersive Pictures. Dapper Dan and Jelani Day, his son and brand manager, are set to executive produce.

Daniel “Dapper Dan” Day is a streetwear pioneer that outfitted some of the biggest New York City-based stars of the ’80s and ’90s out of his iconic store on 125th Street in Harlem. His clientele included Eric B. & Rakim, Salt-N-Pepa, P. Diddy, Mike Tyson, Aaliyah and Floyd Mayweather.

His style of remixing high-end logos from the likes of Gucci and Louis Vuitton into his designs led to litigation that eventually prompted the closure of his store. Over two decades later, in September of last year, Dapper Dan struck a partnership with Gucci to relaunch his exclusive Harlem atelier that includes a Dapper Dan x Gucci capsule that will be available along with the fall 2018 collection.

To read more: https://www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/dapper-dan-biopic-works-sony-jerrod-carmichael-1092914

Frederick T. Joseph Launches GoFundMe to Help Boys & Girls Club of Harlem See “Black Panther”; Raises Over $26,000 in Four Days

Black Panther debuts in theaters February 16, 2018 (Photo: Marvel)

via thegrio.com

A GoFundMe campaign launched to helping Harlem kids see Black Panther next month has already raised more than its $10,000 goal.

Black Panther, the highly anticipated Marvel film about a superhero with the same name, is the first Black-led superhero movie from the Marvel Cinematic Universe, and already, people are celebrating the milestone by purchasing tickets in advance.

With the biggest, Blackest movie of 2018 set to hit theaters in February, some people want to make sure those that may not be able to afford to go to the movies have an opportunity to see a hero who looks like them fighting crime and looking fabulous. So, one man started a campaign to make sure kids in Harlem could see the movie.

“Black Panther” GoFundMe campaign founder Frederick Joseph (photo via twitter.com)

“The release of Marvel’s film the Black Panther is a rare opportunity for young students (primarily of color) to see a black major cinematic and comic book character come to life,” Frederick Joseph, who started the campaign, wrote on Twitter. “This representation is truly fundamental for young people, especially those who are often underserved, unprivileged, and marginalized both nationally and globally.”

“I want these children to be able to see that people who look like them can be superheroes, royalty, and more. All proceeds will go to paying for the private screening tickets for children and chaperones, as well as refreshments. The release of the film is February 16th, 2018, and the screenings will take place the following week between February 19th and 22nd.”

Making the goal

Within three days of Joseph posting his GoFundMe challenge, the account raised over $13,000. As of today, it stands at over $26,000.

Joseph told The Root that he initially wanted the funds to go to the Harlem’s Children Zone, but when the organization couldn’t take the money, he approached the Boys & Girls Club of Harlem.

The funds will be used to pay for tickets and concessions for the kids and their guardians. Anything left over will go to the Boys & Girls Club.

“We want to thank the organizers of this great fundraiser. Your commitment will help our kids see how powerful they can be!” a representative of Boys & Girls club wrote on Facebook.

You can still donate at: https://www.gofundme.com/help-children-see-black-panther

New Black Panther trailer below:

Source: https://thegrio.com/2018/01/09/black-panther-gofundme/

Willie Mays Has World Series MVP Award Named After him by Major League Baseball 

Baseball Legend Willie Mays (photo via emaze.com)

via espn.com

NEW YORK — Major League Baseball has named its World Series Most Valuable Player Award after Willie Mays. The decision was announced Friday, the 63rd anniversary of Mays’ over-the-shoulder catch in deep center field at the Polo Grounds for the New York Giants against Cleveland’s Vic Wertz in Game 1 of the World Series.

The Giants went on to sweep the Indians. The Series MVP award was given out for the first time the following year, when it was won by Brooklyn Dodgers pitcher Johnny Podres.”I’d like to thank Commissioner Rob Manfred and his team at Major League Baseball for honoring me with this recognition,” Mays said in a statement. “Baseball has always taken care of me, and for that I am grateful. I think it’s just a wonderful thing to know that at 86 years of age, I can still give something back to the game. I am proud to lend my name to this important award. What a day this has been!”

Now 86, Mays played in 24 All-Star Games during a 22-year career with the New York and San Francisco Giants and the New York Mets.”Once again, it’s going to remind people of who Willie is and how great a player he was,” Giants manager Bruce Bochy said.

Mays was also honored the same day in Harlem, where the corner of West 155th Street and Harlem River Drive was renamed Willie Mays Drive.

Source: Major League Baseball names World Series MVP award after Willie Mays

Harlem Will Soon Be Home to 20-Story Hip Hop Hall of Fame Museum

(photo via huffpost.com)

by Brennan Williams via (huffpost.com)

Earlier this month, the Hip Hop Hall of Fame Museum won a bid to acquire a Harlem building and development site for a new state-of-the-art facility that will “preserve, archive, exhibit, educate, and showcase hip-hop Music and culture from around the world.”

Phase one, which is set to begin in February 2018, of the museum’s development plan will include, among other things, a multimedia film production studio and a television content production center for students “that will be training for careers in tech and media, while producing real-life content for the museum, and the hip hop television channel network,” the museum’s founder, JT Thompson, said in a release.

Eventually the 20-story building will include 5-star hotel, retail mall, an arcade, restaurant and concert lounge. The organization has also launched a $150 million fundraising campaign to help complete funding for the entertainment complex.

Last year, Thompson ― who’s also an Army veteran ― told the New York Post that the museum’s progress has been a “labor of love.”

“Hip hop is about empowering yourself, moving beyond the music,” he said. “The HHHOF and I have a duty and responsibility to preserve this rich history of music and culture. [You need to] pull yourself up by your bootstraps to pursue your dreams.”

“This has been a labor of love. It’s had its valleys, mountains, peaks and falloffs. In the Army, I had leaders, mentors and brothers like teammates working to achieve something special. In life and in business, be disciplined and finish strong without quitting.”

For more info on the development of the Hip Hop Hall of Fame Museum, please visit the museum’s website.

Source: Harlem Will Soon Be Home To A 20-Story Hip Hop Museum | HuffPost

Ta-Nehisi Coates’s ‘Between the World and Me’ to be Staged at the Apollo Theater in April 2018

Ta-Nehisi Coates (photo via nytimes.com)

article by Andrew R. Chow via nytimes.com

“Between the World and Me,” Ta-Nehisi Coates’s award-winning book exploring racial injustice in America, will be brought to the Apollo stage next April.

Mr. Coates’s fiery work — which made him the National Book Award winner and a Pulitzer Prize finalist — will be adapted into a multimedia performance, with excerpted monologues, video projections, and a score by the jazz musician Jason Moran.

Portions of Mr. Coates’s letters to his son would be read aloud, while narratives of his experiences at Howard University and in New York City could be performed by actors. Kamilah Forbes, the Apollo’s executive producer, will direct the production.

The coming Apollo season will be Ms. Forbes’s first full season in the role; she previously was the associate director of “Raisin in the Sun” on Broadway.

To read more, go to: Ta-Nehisi Coates’s ‘Between the World and Me’ Is Coming to the Apollo – NYTimes.com

Writers Rally to Save Langston Hughes Home in Harlem via Crowdfunding

Langston Hughes (photo via theroot.com)

article by Angela Bronner Helms via theroot.com

The home occupied by one of the great leaders of the Harlem Renaissance, Langston Hughes, still stands on 127th Street in Harlem today.  Hughes used the top floor of the home as his workroom from 1947 to his death in 1967; it was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1982.

The current owner, who remains anonymous, listed the unoccupied dwelling for $1 million (which still has his typerwriter on a shelf) a few years ago, but it did not sell.  CNN Money reports that in a rapidly gentrifying New York, the home is now worth over $3 million.

Now that it’s on the market, writer Renee Watson has started an Indiegogo campaign to raise $150,000 to rent the home and turn it into a cultural center.

Over 250 people, many of them black writers, have given money in support and so far, the initiative to save Hughes’ house has raised almost $34,000.  “Hughes is deeply influential and important not only to me, but many writers of color,” says author Jacqueline Woodson, winner of the National Book Award for Brown Girl Dreaming, which opens with a Hughes poem.

Watson says she has spoken to the owner, who says she would definitely sell it, but “like me, she doesn’t want it to become condos or a coffee shop.”

To donate to the fund, please go to the I, Too, Arts Collective Indigogo page.

To read full article, go to: Black Writers Rally To Save Langston Hughes Home

14 Year-Old Tayloni Mazyck, Paralyzed in Brooklyn Gang Shooting, Inspires at her Middle School Graduation

Tayloni Mazyck getting her diploma at her graduation from New Design Middle School .She was paralyzed in 2013 when hit by a bullet during a gang war shoot out in Brooklyn.
Tayloni Mazyck getting her diploma at her graduation from New Design Middle School .She was paralyzed in 2013 when hit by a bullet during a gang war shoot out in Brooklyn. (MICHAEL SCHWARTZ/FOR NEW YORK DAILY NEWS)