June 2,  2008
of note

  Havana, Cuba  © julien de bock  www.juliendebock.com

of  note 
 celebrates the arts of our  diasporas. It is a space where art meets activism, empowerment, and social  responsibility.

 Editorial Director
Grace Aneiza Ali

Executive Editor
Art & Film Editor
Sandrine Colard

Photography  Editor
Julien De Bock

Film Contributor
Shahnaz Habib

Book & Music Editor
Clarence Haynes

Dance Editor
M. Soledad Sklate

Theater Editor
Stella Vincenot-Dash


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Al Green
Lay It Down (Blue Note)

Hot days are here. It's time to touch again. Reconnect. Look at lovers in the eyes. Hold a hand or two. Let lips meet. Southern Soul Supreme, Al Green's latest offering reminds us what sonic warmth and inspired musicianship does for the soul in an era where technological representation has routinely replaced real human interaction.

With production duties handled by Green, James Poyser, and Ahmir "?uestlove" Thompson, the album is a welcome throwback to "Love and Happiness" and "Let's Stay Together," with an incarnation of songs hosting neo-soul luminaries John Legend, Corrine Bailey Rae, and Anthony Hamilton.  Strings take us afloat on the title track, while the departing thump-a-dump  of "No One Like You" is sublime funk legacy in miniature.

Ultimately, Green, as preacher, uses romantic notions to remind us New Yorkers to take it slow again, to be tender. To mellow out and hear organs chirping and acoustic guitars with twang. 

Photo: Al Green performing in the early 1970s (NYT)

Clarence A. Haynes



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Fire Walkers: Contemporary Artists from India, Pakistan, and the Middle East
On view through Saturday, June 7

Fire Walkers showcases  well-established and emerging female figures of the Contemporary Indian and South Asian art scene while considering the influence Diaspora, in its various incarnations, has upon the practices of artists working on an international plane.

The practice of fire walking, long considered a test-of-faith with ritualistic and other worldly implications, is  simply the meeting of two bodies, at two independent temperatures, which will both be altered due to their physical connection. Each artist  in the exhibition reveals  a strength and an  unfaltering direction, which allows them to broach issues of  overarching complexity and infinite delicacy.

Stefan Stux Gallery
530 West 25th Street
Manhattan, NY 10001

Remix: New Modernities in a Post-Indian World
On view June 7 - September 21

In Remix: New Modernities in a Post-Indian World, 15 artists of mixed Native/non-Native background from the United States, Canada, and Mexico explore ideas on the edges of human identity.

Often amusing, and invariably provocative, the work of this new generation of artists raises issues that resonate far beyond the American art scene - questions about the meaning of race and ethnicity in an increasingly global society, and the tension between individual self-expression and cultural identity.

Image: Steven Yazzie, Sleeping with Jefferson, 2007.

National Museum of the American Indian
Alexander Hamilton U.S. Custom House
One Bowling Green
Btw Broadway & State Streets
Manhattan, NY 10004

Gabriel Orozco:  Recent work
On view through June 14

Mexican artist Gabriel Orozco presents a new work based on obituary headlines of individual notoriety and accidental fame taken from The New York Times.

Extracting anecdotal aspects of the identity, cause and date of the deceased, he cuts and pastes the remains to reveal the poetics, wit and drama of the perception of public life in the press.

Image: Obit, 2008

Marian Goodman Gallery
24 W. 57th Street
@ 5th Avenue
Manhattan, NY 10019

Charles Juhasz-Alvarado: Complicated Stories

On view through July 12

Charles Juhasz-Alvarado: Complicated Stories will present the artist's past and present bodies of works as an ongoing dialogue on social consciousness and cultural identity.

His elaborate site-specific installations engage the viewer through narrative, performance, audio, and sculpture to introduce a fantasy world that serves as an acute and humorous allegory of today's multicultural society and the artist's own background.

The Puerto-Rican artist was born in 1965 at the Clark Air Force Base in the Philippines to a Hungarian father and a Puerto Rican-Cuban mother.

Exit Art
475 Tenth Ave
Manhattan, NY 10018


Herman Leonard:  Jazz Giants
On view through June 15

Jazz Giants, the fine art music photography of Herman Leonard, is a photographic journey through the golden years of the Jazz, Blues and Bebop eras that document the larger-than-life legends that comprise the visual album of America's music.

Focusing on the life and times of famed artists such as Billie Holiday, Duke Ellington, and Thelonious Monk among countless others, this exhibition features a selection from Leonard's extensive photographic history.

Image: Dexter Gordon

Morrison Hotel Gallery
124 Prince Street
New York, NY 10012

Berend Strik:  En Sourdine
On view through June 21

Berend  Strik work includes new altered photographs and stitched three-dimensional architectural models. The images are chosen from photographs the artist has taken on his travels through Africa, documenting the people, architecture and post-colonial landscapes of the continent. 

By perforating them with a needle and thread, the two-dimensional quality of the image is disrupted, creating a work that is both tactile and conceptually driven. The embroidered photographs and collaged textures contain a nuanced layering of pattern, fabric, and image that come together to explore the notion of the exotic.

Jack Tilton Gallery
8 East  76th Street
btw Fifth and Madison Avenues
Manhattan, NY 10021

Fallen Paradise: William Greiner
On view through June 27

William Greiner presents an image of pre-Katrina New Orleans  that was already devastated, by neglect and abandonment, long before natural disaster struck. His imaging of New Orleans' urban vernacular is perceptively pictured through a carefully constructed use of color, form, and content.

Here, the familiar becomes unfamiliar. The seemingly objective actuality of the city, its banality, its ordinary everyday impression, is transformed into a vista of flush saturated palettes of color. Born, raised and (until Katrina) living and working in the city, New Orleans has always been an importnt source of inspiration for Greiner's work.

Klompching Gallery
111 Front Street
Brooklyn, NY 11201


Jamal Jackson Dance Company
Wednesday, June 4 - Sunday,  June 8

The Jamal Jackson Dance Company's mission is to help people obtain a strong understanding of the connection between the African and American cultures.  The company has explored the history and evolution of these cultures with the use of various traditional and contemporary music accompaniments. 

Using performance and workshops as its medium the Jamal Jackson Dance Company continues to spread African and American experiences through original and innovative movement styles.

Connelly Theatre
220 E. Fourth St.
Manhattan , NY

Badgers Dance the Big Apple
Tuesday, June 3 @  7:30  pm

Badgers Dance the Big Apple showcases work by two contemporary choreographers/dancers who were previously named in Dance Magazine's "25 to Watch" - Li Chiao-Ping,  artistic director of Li Chiao-Ping Dance, and Philadelphia-based Tania Isaac , artistic director of Tania Isaac Dance. 

Also featured will be  Jin-Wen Yu, former Cloud Gate Dance Theatre soloist and artistic director of Jin-Wen Yu Dance;  Beth Soll artistic director of Beth Soll & Company, and Valerie Green  artistic director of Dance Entropy.

TRIBECA Performing Arts Center
199 Chambers Street
Manhattan, NY 10007

Trinayan Collective
Thursday, June 5 - Sunday, June 8

The Trinayan Collective, known for its evocative interpretations of Odissi dance, merges ancient dance rituals with the contemporary human experience.

Using a pastiche of live music, movement and spoken word, Guna looks to the east for revelation of the elements that bind the soul-purity, passion and darkness. Featuring the NYC premiere of the powerful, imaginative Sapta Matrika-The Seven Divine Mothers, by award-winning choreographer Durga Charan Ranbir.

The Joyce Theater Soho
155 Mercer St.
Manhattan, NY 10012

Pre-performance with Camille Brown
Sunday, June 8 @ 5: 30 pm

As part of The Joyce Theater Presents Alvin Ailey 
American Dance Theater at BAM,  join emerging choreographer Camille Brown at Brooklyn's Night of the Cookers for a pre-performance event.

Camille Brown has been named one of the 25 to Watch by Dance Magazine.   Her explosive new work, The Groove To Nobody's Business, is part of the "Best Of" program of Alvin Ailey's run at BAM.

To purchase & RSVP, contact Francine Sheffield by June 3 at:

Night of the Cookers
767 Fulton Street
Brooklyn, NY 11217

Compagnie Heddy Maalem
Tuesday, June 10 - Sunday, June 15

Heddy Maalem's impressions of Lagos take flight in the provocative movements of fourteen distinctive dancers from six African countries. In a simple, open white cube, 14 African dancers-from Mali, Benin, Nigeria and Senegal create a powerful, unforgettable depiction of brutality in Lagos

Set to Stravinsky's The Rite of Spring in the U.S. premiere of Le Sacre du Printemps, see contrasting emotions explode as furious energy mingles with scenes of silence.

The Joyce Theater
175 8th Ave.
Manhattan, NY 10011


Letters to a Young Sister - Hill Harper
Tuesday, June 3 @  6 pm

In the follow-up to his award winning national bestseller, Letters to a Young Brother, Hill Harper shares his powerful wisdom for young women everywhere, drawing on the courageous advice of the female role models who transformed his life.

Letters to a Young Sister unfolds as a series of letters written by older brother Hill to a universal Young Sistah. In his straight-talking style, Hill helps his young sister build self-confidence, self-reliance, self-respect, and encourages her on her journeys towards becoming a strong and successful woman. The book also includes contributions from admirable women like Angela Basset, Ciara, Michelle Obama, Tatyana Ali, Nikki Giovanni, Congresswoman Carolyn Cheeks Kilpatrikck, Eve, Malinda Williams, Kim Porter, and more.

Hue-Man Bookstore & Cafe
2319 Frederick Douglass Blvd
Btw 124th & 125th Streets
Harlem, NY 10027

Poets in the Galleries: Rigoberto Gonzalez
Sunday, June 8 @ 5 pm

This spring, the Queens Museum of Art announces its second season of Poets in the Galleries, the interdisciplinary poetry series that utilizes the Museum's exhibition space as an invigorating site of exploration, interactive readings and discussion. 

On Sunday, June 8, poet Rigoberto Gonzalez will conduct a lively presentation in response to the Museum's current exhibition. This Case of Conscience: Spiritual Flushing and the Remonstrance lends itself especially well to the series by creating an open-ended forum in which all participants can explore the links between art and poetry, as well as related themes of religious freedom, mutual respect, diversity and spirituality.

Queens Museum of Art
New York City Building
Flushing Meadows Corona Park
Queens, NY  11368


Live and Become
Wednesday, June 4  @ 6: 30 pm

Live and Become opens in a Sudanese refugee camp in 1984, when an Ethiopian Christian mother urges her son to assume a Jewish identity in order to escape war and famine. As part of the Operation Moses airlift, Solomon/Shlomo is adopted by an Israeli family, and begins the long and at times difficult process of find his place within Israeli society.

Part of the Israel @ 60 celebration to mark Israel's 60th anniversary.

The Film Society of Lincoln Center
Walter Reade Theater
70 Lincoln Center Plaza
Manhattan, NY 10023

Made in America  @ Sundance Institute at BAM
Wednesday, June 4 @ 9:40 pm

Once a hotbed of African American culture, the small stretch of land known as South Central Los Angeles is now considered by many to be a war zone. L.A. native Stacy Peralta returns home to examine the complex roots of this evolving neighborhood.

Narrated by Forest Whitaker, Made in America weaves together the stories of African American transplants who fled the South for California, with first-hand accounts from the community's earliest activists to create a compelling look at a historical crossroads that far too many Americans have never glimpsed

Peter Jay Sharp Building
30 Lafayette Avenue
Brooklyn, NY 11217

The Order of Myths @ Sundance Institute at BAM
Tuesday, June 3 @ 9:40 pm

Mobile, Alabama is home to America's oldest Mardi Gras celebration. But the elaborate parades and vibrant pageantry have always been segregated along racial lines.

Mobile native Margaret Brown escorts us through the distinctions and similarities of the parallel black and white realms of this time-honored ritual. As stories of a lynching and other accounts of Mobile's racial divide are introduced, Brown also illustrates examples of recent racial integration, and allows viewers to draw their own conclusions about social order and progress

Peter Jay Sharp Building
30 Lafayette Avenue
Brooklyn, NY 11217

Adopt Me, Michael Jordan @ Sundance Institute at BAM
Friday, June 6 @ 7 pm

Adopt Me, Michael Jordan follows Weynshet, a twelve-year old girl who travels from an Ethopian orphanage to an adoptive family in the US. In this work-in-progress documentary, the award-winning producing team of Melanie Judd and Susan Motamed focus on the experiences of a child, illuminating the complications of international adoption and raising the question of what it means to lose everything you know in order to get what you need.

Peter Jay Sharp Building
30 Lafayette Avenue
Brooklyn, NY 11217

Trouble the Water @ Sundance Institute at  BAM
Sunday, June 8 @  9:15 pm

Brooklyn-based filmmakers Tia Lessin and Carl Deal weave a powerful story about survival in the face of massive government ineptitude and indifference.

Following Hurricane Katrina, they met an aspiring rap artist, Kimberly Rivers, and her husband Scott who, stranded in their city by deadly floodwaters, documented their journey to higher ground with a handicam. Blending original film and archival news footage with Kim's home movies, this account of Katrina offers a rare snapshot of a community transformed by disaster and heroics in a way that most media failed to capture: from the inside-out. What is truly amazing about this story is not the harrowing details, but the warmth of the storytelling and the survivors' enduring faith in humanity. Winner of the Documentary Grand Prize.

Peter Jay Sharp Building
30 Lafayette Avenue
Brooklyn, NY 11217


Karma Chameleon: A Cross-Cultural Connection
@ Brooklyn Museum's Target First Saturdays
Saturday, June 7

Experience the melding of cultural elements and dynamic ideas in June Target First Saturday's Karma Chameleon: A Cross-Cultural Connection. The numerous expressions and representations of cultures we will encounter throughout the night take us through the evolving concepts, mediums, and creativity of cross-cultural exploration. Embark on a spiritual journey through traditional Balinese music and dance, an electric escapade through India, Japan, Korea, Panama, Ghana and South Africa, and end the night with a dance party that mixes the signature energy of funk, soul, hip hop and electronic with hits from the 80's by the celebrated DJ Spinna.

Brooklyn Museum
200 Eastern Parkway
Brooklyn, New York 11238

Brasil Fest! Samba!
Saturday, June 7 @ 8 pm

An exhilarating program of samba vocals and dances will be performed by the dynamic 20-member Berço do Samba de São Mateus in its debut. The community-based group from São Mateus, the "cradle of samba" on the outskirts of São Paolo, has built a solid reputation for maintaining the roots of old-style sambas while creating new works. Its extensive repertoire includes dances based on lundu, jongo and candomblé rituals, and songs dedicated to the orishas (African deities). Featured are vocalists, dancers, and musicians on six and seven-string guitars, saxophone, trombone and a battery of traditional percussion (pandeiro, atabaques, tân-tân, surdo, caixas, repique, berimbau).

Peter Norton Symphony Space
2537 Broadway @ 95th Street
Manhattan, NY 10025

Cassandra Wilson
Saturday, June 7 @ 8 pm

Grammy-winning vocalist, songwriter, producer, Cassandra Wilson never fails to surprise and inspire. Sexy, honey-velvet vocals wrapped around her own jazzy blue compositions or inventive interpretations of others' material led TIME magazine to name her "America's Best Singer."

As a proud Mississippian, Wilson has also committed much of her career to preserving Mississippi's cultural heritage and supporting the advancement of contemporary Mississippi musicians.

BAM Harvey Theater
651 Fulton Street
btw Ashland Place and Rockwell Place
Brooklyn, NY 11217


TeatroStageFest: Latino International Theatre Festival
Monday,  June 2  - Sunday, June 15

New York's annual celebration of great theater from New York, Latin America, the Caribbean, and Spain.  Productions and events are performed bilingually, in English, or in Spanish with live interpretation or supertitles.

Reading:  Forgive Me?

Friday, June 6  @ 7 pm

At the end of their relationship, an African-American man and a Black British woman explore the emotional history and emotional legacy that persists and interrupts the ways in which people of  African descent love and relate to one another.

Their personal break-up offers a perspective on what it might take for a people to heal, love again, and overcome. As their relationship ends, it may ultimately reveal a more honest beginning.

Written by international journalist Esther Armah. Presented in collaboration with the Harlem-based New Heritage Theatre Group.

Museum of the City of New York
1220 Fifth Avenue
Manhattan, NY 10029

A Celebration of Talento Artístico
Monday, June 9 @ 6 pm

Hear Tony Award-winning director and choreographer Graciela Daniele (Ragtime,Chita Rivera: The Dancer's Life, Annie Get Your Gun), producer-director-actor Eugenio Derbez (Latinologues), actress Bianca Marroquín (Chicago, The Pajama Game) and composer-writer-performer Lin-Manuel Miranda (In The Heights) discuss their work in musical theater.

Whether performing in big Broadway musicals, directing and choreographing new shows or creating groundbreaking hits, these talented artistas are winning awards and attracting avid theater audiences. In collaboration with TeatroStageFest, the Latino International Theater Festival of New York.

The TimesCenter
242 West 41st Street
Btw 7th and 8th Avenues
Manhattan, NY

About Us

For many of us, the arts are central and inspirational to our life, work, and activism. As people of color, we are making great strides in terms of our representation on the stage, yet we are not equally represented in the audience. Even when it is work celebrating our histories, experiences, and cultures - we are often scantily present in the theaters, auditoriums, galleries, etc.

Out of that absence, of note was created. Its mission is to increase our access to and participation in the arts that celebrate people of color. The artistic works presented by
of note demonstrate a commitment to global citizenship and social change.

Grace Aneiza ali

Sandrine Colard

Julien De Bock

Shahnaz Habib

Clarence Haynes

M. Soledad Sklate

Stella Vincenot-Dash


© of note  2008. All Rights Reserved.