A culmination of the art world’s gradual return to normalcy is the Brooklyn Museum’s First Saturdays reintroduction. The institution offered First Saturday Lite events last summer, but on Saturday the cherished monthly tradition returns in full for the first time since March 2020.
This weekend’s programming, which begins at 5 p.m., includes a performance by musician Isa Reyes; a 10-minute hour of talk about the history and future of black representation in the museum’s American Art galleries, led by the Teen Apprentices; and a town hall with the director of the museum, Anne Pasternak, and a group of city councilors. A full list of activities is available at brooklynmuseum.org.
First Saturday is free to the public. Due to Covid-related capacity restrictions, advance registration for the indoor events is required, but no RSVP is required for Fundred Project’s “Viva Brooklyn! With Mel Chin,” a celebration taking place in the museum’s plaza in honor of Chin’s initiative to eliminate lead poisoning in children.
“Sidney Poitier & His Trailblazing Contemporaries,” a month-long series starting Friday on Film Forum, was originally slated for 2020, well before Poitier’s death in January. Programmed by film historian Donald Bogle, the retrospective is dedicated not only to Poitier, but also to other African-American film actors from the time of his peak as a matinee idol.
Memory of Sidney Poitier
Sidney Poitier, the first black performer to win the Academy Award for Best Actor, died on January 7. He was 94.
In addition to essential Poitier performances, including as a doctor trying to get through to a racist patient in “No Way Out” (shown on Friday, Saturday, and Wednesday) and as a student in “Blackboard Jungle” (on Friday, Saturday, Monday and April 15), the lineup will also highlight the turns of Ivan Dixon, Canada Lee, Juano Hernandez, James Edwards and others. On opening weekend, Edwards can be seen in the World War II drama “Home of the Brave” (on Fridays and Tuesdays) as a soldier facing bigotry on a mission, and in the Stanley Kubrick robbery photo “The Killing” (on Sunday, Tuesday and April 16), in which he is depicted as a parking attendant who unknowingly aids a gunman (Timothy Carey).
Zach Zucker is a real clown.
Zucker, who currently lives in Los Angeles and London, studied theater and clowning at the Ecole Philippe Gaulier in Étampes, France, outside Paris. When he’s not performing as Jack Tucker, he puts everything he’s learned into “Stamptown,” a variety show he hosts that brings fringe theatre, avant-garde artists and comedy acts to cities around the world. It makes two stops in New York this weekend.
On Saturday at 9:30 PM at Asylum NYC, Zucker’s lineup will consist of Ike Ufomadu, Ashton Womack, Nina Tarr, Jamie Watson and Gavin Matts. Tickets for Saturday’s show cost 20,-. On Sunday at 8pm at Brooklyn’s Union Hall, Australian purple puppet comedian Randy Feltface, Alex Edelman (who is enjoying an Off Broadway run), Martin Urbano, Caitlin Cook and selections from the Found Footage Festival are on his program. Presale tickets for Sunday’s performance are sold out, but there will be a standby line at the door for the show.
SEAN L. McCarthy
When the coronavirus hit in early 2020, hard-swinging, constantly touring pianist Emmet Cohen acted quickly to keep the music going. With his trio, he began streaming weekly performances from his home in Harlem, under the title ‘Live From Emmet’s Place’, joined each week by various guest musicians – sometimes fellow up and coming stars, other times prized elders. The streams quickly became a hit and thousands of viewers still tune in weekly via Facebook and YouTube.
At Birdland through Saturday, Cohen takes the sizzling energy and fun vibe of those livestream sessions onstage. Along with his trio mates, bassist Russell Hall and drummer Kyle Poole, Cohen welcomes a different guest each night: saxophonist George Coleman, a National Endowment for the Arts Jazz Master, on Thursdays; the saxophonist Houston Person on Friday; and the vibraphonist Joel Ross on Saturday. They play two sets every night — Thursdays at 7:30 and 9:30 p.m. and Friday and Saturday at 8:30 and 10:30 p.m. – with ticket prices ranging from $30 to $40. And yes, there’s a streaming option: Thursday’s second set is available for $10 is viewed on the Birdland website.
An Odyssey for Civil Rights
It’s easy to think that only adults can change the world. However, children have also contributed to the transformation of society.
For the title character of “Jabari Dreams of Freedom,” a play by Nambi E. Kelley, this topic is personal: Jabari’s best friend, Emmett, is in the hospital after being injured by police in an incident involving these two black graders. were mistaken for criminals.
Presented by the First Woman troupe at the New Victory Theatre, the production takes Jabari (Verdale Stinson Jr.) to the past. (Leo Lei designed the show’s projections and media.) He meets Claudette Colvin, who, at age 15, refused to give up her place on a segregated bus nine months before Rosa Parks did. He also meets 6-year-old Ruby Bridges, who helped integrate New Orleans’ public schools, and a young, idealistic Barack Obama.
Directed by Daniel Carlton, this inspiring, interactive piece will have its final live performances on Saturdays at 2 and 7pm and on Sundays at 5pm; it will also be streamed on demand on New Victory’s website through April 17. (Tickets start at $20; streaming is $25.) With spirituals, call-and-response chants, and theater-goers protest signs, “Jabari” encourages young audiences to stand up for their own rights.