Poet and vocalist LaTasha N. Nevada Diggs is quite familiar with staging tributes to trailblazers like Gil Scott-Heron, Sekou Sundiata, and Miriam Makeba with stellar lineups and ensembles. In this Lincoln Center commission, Diggs joins electro-acoustic keyboard wizard and composer Marc Cary to respond and pay homage to the artistic legacy of poet Jayne Cortez (1934–2012). How does one reimagine a force like Cortez, whose innovative works rooted in activism, the African Diaspora, and music blurred the lines between surrealism and the Black Arts Movement? Drawing from multiple musical forms, minimalism, and breath, Diggs and Cary hope to begin their journey into a visceral answer to this question. Joining them will be members of Cary’s Focus Trio with Rashaan Carter on bass and Sameer Gupta on drums and tablas, along with surprise guests.
7:00 Pre-show conversation with Denardo Coleman (son of Jayne Cortez and Ornette Coleman) and Rosamond S. King (Artist/Scholar, Brooklyn College)
7:30 Musical performance