Good Black Stuff…

I am so excited and overwhelmed with the fabulous things Black American people are doing in the arts now.   Everywhere I turn, there’s something new to be proud of.  A picture can be worth a thousand words.  Not sure if I have to credit any of these photos. Forgot where I got them from…but don’t worry about that. Just check it all out if you can!

Watch 42

Chadwick Boseman plays Jackie Robinson in the film 42: The Jackie Robinson Story …still playing!  I’m a little selfish and biased because Mr. Boseman was the voice of Antonio in the AudioCd version of my novel Upstate, which won an award from the Audio Publishers Association.  Hey, no Oscar for either of us yet, but it’s a start!

By the Way, Meet Vera Stark

The play By the Way, Meet Vera Stark, playing now at the Goodman Theatre in Chicago.  And, Sanaa Lathan, one of my favorites, starred in this in New York City.

Lynn Nottage

Playwright Lynn Nottage, author of By The Way, Meet Vera Clark.


Art exhibit Rise Up Ye Mighty Race!  by the fabulous Kara Walker at the Art Institute of Chicago until late August 2013.  I keep saying I am going to write my reaction/review/whatever to this latest work from her.  But, I never have much to say when I depart her exhibits.  I am speechless.  What I will always be able to say is that I saw her first solo exhibition ever at the University of Chicago Renaissance Society back in 1997.  Lucky me.  I was just walking to class, a professor’s office or something like that.   The next thing you know, I peered into an exhibit hall and forgot where I was going because suddenly I saw…well, you would have to know Ms. Walker to know what I saw.


This is, by far, one of the greatest interviews I have read in a very, very, very long time.  I would love to see these two together on Charlie Rose.  Pick it up if you need wisdom or a boost.

Portrait of Jason

Portrait of Jason is really inexplicable.  I had heard of this, before.  Now, Milestone Films has given it the same revival that this classic film preservationist company gave to Charles Burnett’s Killer of Sheep.  What to say of it….?  Well, it is a film in which nothing happens at all.  Just normal night talk.   If you love to hear narcissists riff, in black and white with liquor and joints no less, then this is absolutely the movie for you.  Screens at 7:00 p.m. at the Music Box theatre in Chicago on select nights.

Trip to the Bountiful

Trip to the Bountiful

“Go on Cicely…! Go! Go! Go!”

See Now Then

Jamaica Kincaid rocks.


The L.A. Rebellion Black Film Series, which covers the eclectic and genius pack of Black filmmakers in America, features classic and new films.  Currently plays at the Logan Center for the Arts on the University of Chicago campus.  Some of the filmmakers will be present at the screenings (I’ve already met Haile Gerima and Charles Burnett!).   Many of these films are unavailable for purchase elsewhere, and simply lend themselves to live viewings.  You will be forever changed by seeing just one of these films.  Curated by a few people, including Dr. Jacqueline Stewart and the University of Chicago Society for Cinema and Media Studies.

Black Cinema House

Ummmmm….did y’all know there’s a Black Cinema House on the South Side of Chicago?  69th and Dorchester to be exact?  Showing Black films, hosting Black film series, inviting in experts to speak on Black films, archiving Black films, other things I need to hurry up and check out.  Well, if you didn’t know then you can’t say you don’t know now.  I’ve told you….

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