Tuesday January 24, 2006

Harlem to Dayton

"Of Ebony Embers" performance to celebrate poetry, music of 1920s African Americans.

The Harlem Renaissance will come to life at the University of Dayton at 8 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 7, in the Kennedy Union Boll Theatre when the Core Ensemble performs "Of Ebony Embers: Vignettes of the Harlem Renaissance."

Tickets cost $14 for the general public; $5 for students; and $8 for UD faculty, staff and alumni. Call (937) 229-2545 or go to http://artsseries.udayton.edu. Free parking is available on campus in single-letter lots starting at 7:30 p.m.

"Of Ebony Embers" is a musical play exploring the life and times of the African Americans in 1920s New York City who helped shape the Harlem Renaissance. The play depicts the lives of three African American poets — Langston Hughes, Countee Cullen and Claude McKay — as seen through the eyes of the great painter and muralist Aaron Douglas.  It also features music by African American composers, from jazz greats Duke Ellington, Thelonious Monk and Charles Mingus to concert music composers Jeffrey Mumford and George Walker.

Actor/playwright Akin Babatunde and a chamber music trio — comprising Tahirah Whittington on cello, Hugh Hinton on piano and Michael Parola on percussion — will perform "Of Ebony Embers."

The Boston Globe hailed the Core Ensemble as "often formidable, always intelligent, ultimately compelling."

The concert is part of the University of Dayton's Arts Series and the University's Year of Diverse Voices, a theme for campus arts performances throughout the academic year to commemorate the centennial of the death of Paul Laurence Dunbar, a native Daytonian and world-famous black poet.

For media interviews, contact Eileen Carr at (937) 229-2787 or via e-mail at carreile@notes.udayton.edu. For more on arts events at UD, see http://artsseries.udayton.edu.