2019-2020 OXFORD AMERICAN music series at South on Main

One of the best music series in the South takes place in Little Rock as the Oxford American brings musicians to South on Main. It is actually three different music series: Americana, Jazz, and Archetypes & Troubadours. Tickets are already on sale, and many of the concerts will sell out. So do not delay!

Up first is Amy Helm in the Americana Series. She will perform on Thursday, August 22 at 8:00pm. “One of Americana’s most impassioned, soul-stirring singers.” —Rolling Stone Country

First in the Jazz Series is Peter Martin & Romero Lubambo featuring Erin Bode. They’ll be in Little Rock on Thursday, September 5 at 8:00pm. “One of the most underrated pianists in jazz today … Martin plays with the kind of daring and excitement that marks a distinctive personality on the keyboard.” — Washington Post

The first in the Archetypes & Troubadours Series is Rev. Sekou on Thursday, September 26 at 8:00pm. “Rev. Sekou delivers the spiritual performance we need now.”—Paste

Next in Americana is Chatham County Line on Thursday, October 17 at 8:00pm. “What initially drew me to this Raleigh, North Carolina-based quartet is that in addition to the unique mix of bluegrass, folk and Americana tunes they harmonize so beautifully on is the fact that they typically crowd around a single, large, silver radio microphone. And that’s not the band’s only nod to the past.” — Huffington Post

Marsalis is a name synonymous with jazz. The Jason Marsalis Vibes Quartet is next in the Jazz Series on Thursday, November 14. “[Marsalis’s] playing is eccentric within graceful boundaries, concerned with polyrhythm as science, history and gamesmanship, full of technique used to non-slick ends … Discipline and strategy are written deeply into the band.” — New York Times

Next in the Archetypes & Troubadours Series is Catherine Russell on Thursday, December 5, at 8:00pm. “A wonderfully charismatic performer with a show­stopping voice and an unabashedly old-fashioned repertoire.” — The Washington Post

The Fred Hersch Trio takes the Oxford American stage for the Jazz Series on Thursday, January 30 at 8:00pm. “An elegant force of musical invention, Fred Hersch cannot be discounted in any discussion of the top contemporary jazz pianists.” —LA Times

Jon Cleary is next in the Americana Series.  He’ll be on stage on Thursday, February 20 at 8:00pm. “Cleary embodies the heart and soul of the Crescent City, keeping the sound and the fury of its legendary piano pounders alive and kicking.”— No Depression

John Fullbright will be next in the Archetypes & Troubadours Series on Thursday, March 12 at 8:00pm. “In a short-­attention-­span world overloaded with sensory stimulation, there aren’t many artists who can stop you in your tracks with a single song.” —American Songwriter

The final 2019-2020 Americana Series entry is Mary Gauthier on Thursday, March 26 at 8:00pm.  “…[Mary Gauthier’s] Rifles and Rosary Beads, is not only one of the most arresting American singer-songwriter records in recent years, but one of the most vital pieces of art to come out of those two wars.” — Rolling Stone Country

Ranky Tanky closes out the 2019-2020 Archetypes & Troubadours Series on Thursday, April 16 at 8:00pm. “Ranky Tanky proved that exotic music can be both unfamiliar enough to be surprising, and yet familiar enough to provoke swinging hips and nodding heads. When it works, it’s the best of both worlds.” —Paste

The final Jazz Series concert is on Thursday, April 23 at 8:00pm. It features the Miguel Zenón Quartet. “This young musician and composer is at once reestablishing the artistic, cultural, and social tradition of jazz while creating an entirely new jazz language for the 21st century.” —MacArthur Foundation

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Tonight at the CALS Ron Robinson Theater – Streep and Hanks in Spielberg’s THE POST

Image result for the post movieTonight’s movie at the CALS Ron Robinson Theater is The Post.  It is part of their movies of a Movement: The Civil Rights & Social Change Collection!

Steven Spielberg directs Meryl Streep and Tom Hanks in The Post, a thrilling drama about the unlikely partnership between The Washington Post’s Katharine Graham (Streep), the first female publisher of a major American newspaper, and editor Ben Bradlee (Hanks).

The pair race to catch up with The New York Times to expose a massive cover-up of government secrets that spanned three decades and four U.S. Presidents. The two must overcome their differences as they risk their careers – and their very freedom – to help bring long-buried truths to light.

The screening starts at 7pm. Admission is $5.

Today CALS Butler Center Legacies & Lunch explores “The Son of Little Rock Who Broke Ground for Black Journalists” at noon

Image may contain: 1 person, sunglasses and closeupJoin the Central Arkansas Library System’s Legacies & Lunch, for Benji de la Piedra’s talk on “The Two Herbert Dentons: A Principal and a Journalist, from Black Little Rock to Black DC and Beyond.”

It will take place at 12 noon at the Darragh Center Auditorium inside the main CALS building on Library Sqaure.

Herbert Denton Jr., a native son of Little Rock, was a pioneering African American journalist at the Washington Post from 1966 until his death in 1989. As the first person of color with a position of authority in the Post newsroom, he hired and mentored a generation of influential black journalists and revolutionized coverage of local life in the nation’s capital at a time when the city was more than seventy percent African American.

His father, Herbert Denton Sr., was a lifelong public educator in Little Rock and a pillar of the city’s black community, who so far has gone unacknowledged in the written record of Little Rock history. As Denton Jr.’s biographer, Benji de la Piedra will trace the career arcs of both father and son, with an emphasis on their powerful, if sometimes controversial, approaches to racial uplift, education, and civic responsibility.

Benji de la Piedra is a writer and oral historian from Washington DC, currently living in Little Rock. In addition to his work on Herbert Denton Jr.’s biography, he co-directs the Columbia Life Histories Project and serves on the coordinating committee of the Arkansas People’s History Project. A graduate of Columbia University’s Oral History MA program, and a former fellow of the Alliance for Historical Dialogue and Accountability, he teaches and consults on community-based oral history projects around the United States. He speaks and writes regularly about American history and culture, with an emphasis on black intellectual expression.

Lineup for April’s 11th Annual Arkansas Literary Festival Announced

1359064160-litfest_logoAs winter drones on, a person’s fancy may turn to thoughts of spring. Or to a good book to read by candlelight to pass the time in winter.

In any way, a certain harbinger of warmer weather will be the presence in April of the 11th annual Arkansas Literary Festival.

Prestigious award-winners, big names, writers for television shows, journalists, and artists are among the diverse roster of presenters who will be providing sessions at the eleventh annual Arkansas Literary Festival, April 24-27, 2014. The Central Arkansas Library System‘s Main Library campus and many other Little Rock venues are the sites for a stimulating mix of sessions, panels, special events, performances, workshops, presentations, opportunities to meet authors, book sales, and book signings. Most events are free and open to the public.

The Arkansas Literary Festival, the premier gathering of readers and writers in Arkansas, will include more than 80 presenters including featured authors Catherine Coulter, who has more than seventy million books in print; Congressman John Lewis, one of the key figures in the civil rights movement; best-selling authors Mary Roach, ReShonda Tate Billingsley, Curtis Sittenfeld, and artist/illustrator Kadir Nelson; musician Rhett Miller; and education expert David L. Kirp.

This year’s Festival authors have won an impressive number and variety of distinguished awards, including ten Emmy awards, multiple National Endowment for the Arts fellowships and grants, two Pulitzer Prizes, the MacArthur Foundation Fellowship (the Genius Grant), the National Book Award, the Coretta Scott King Award, the Caldecott Honor, an NAACP Image Award, an Eisner Award, a Ford Foundation Fellowship, the American Book Award, the O. Henry Prize, recognition as one of the National Book Foundation’s 5 Under 35, and much more.

Their works have been included in the New York TimesRolling Stone, Bon Appétit, Glamour, Playboy, Esquire, Vanity Fair, Slate, Mother Jones, and the Washington Post, among others.

Special events for adults during the Festival include a cocktail reception with the authors, a writing workshop with Catherine Coulter, a concert by Rhett Miller, and a presentation by an art historian which includes an Artists Buffet. Panels and sessions include genres and topics such as chocolate, lucid dreaming, graphic novels, the war in Iraq, short stories, Arkansas food, murder mysteries, football, dinosaurs, and gangsters.

Children’s special events include a storytime on the lawn of the Governor’s Mansion, a treasure hunt, a play based on The Little Engine That Could, and a Lego exhibit. Festival sessions for children will take place at both the Hillary Rodham Clinton Children’s Library and Learning Center, 4800 10th Street, and the Youth Services Department at the Main Library, 100 Rock Street.

At Level 4, the Main Library’s teen center, special events for teens include a robotics demonstration and a panel on comic book conventions.

Through the Writers In The Schools (WITS) initiative, the Festival will provide presentations by several authors for Pulaski county elementary, middle, and senior high schools and area colleges.

Support for the Literary Festival is provided by sponsors including Central Arkansas Library System; Friends of Central Arkansas Libraries (FOCAL); Arkansas Humanities Council; Department of Arkansas Heritage; Fred K. Darragh Jr. Foundation; Mosaic Templars Cultural Center; ProSmart Printing; KUAR FM 89.1; Little Rock Convention and Visitors Bureau; Arkansas Democrat Gazette; Sync; Arkansas Life; William J. Clinton Presidential Center; Oxford American; Landers FIAT of Benton; MacArthur Museum of Arkansas Military History; Arkansas Times; Wright, Lindsey & Jennings LLP; University of Arkansas Clinton School of Public Service; Historic Arkansas Museum ; Christ Church, Little Rock’s Downtown Episcopal Church; Witt Stephens Jr. Central Arkansas Nature Center; Arkansas Library Association; Goss Management Company, LLC; Henderson State University; Hendrix College Project Pericles Program; Pulaski Technical College; Arkansas Arts Center; River’s Edge Media; Arkansas Shakespeare Theatre; Rockefeller Elementary School; Gibbs Elementary School; Hemingway-Pfeiffer Museum and Educational Center; Writers’ Colony at Dairy Hollow; Arkansas Governor’s Mansion; Hendrix College Creative Writing; University of Arkansas at Little Rock English Department; University of Arkansas at Little Rock Department of Rhetoric and Writing; Pyramid Art, Books & Custom Framing/Hearne Fine Art; Stickyz Rock ‘n’ Roll Chicken Shack; Literacy Action of Central Arkansas; National Park Service Central High School National Historic Site; Tales from the South; and Power 92 Jams. The Arkansas Literary Festival is supported in part by funds from the Arkansas Humanities Council and the National Endowment for the Humanities.

Author! Author!, a cocktail reception with the authors, will be Friday, April 25, at 8 p.m.; tickets are $25 in advance, and $40 at the door, and go on sale at ArkansasLiteraryFestival.org beginning Tuesday, April 1. Author! Author! tickets will also be available for purchase at the Main Library and River Market Books & Gifts, 120 River Market Avenue.

The Arkansas Literary Festival is a project of the Central Arkansas Library System. The Festival’s mission is to encourage the development of a more literate populace. A group of dedicated volunteers assists Festival Coordinator Brad Mooy with planning the Festival. Jay Jennings is the 2014 Festival Chair. Other committee chairs include Katherine Whitworth, Talent Committee; Lisa Donovan, Youth Programs; and Amy Bradley-Hole, Moderators.

For more information about the 2014 Arkansas Literary Festival, visit ArkansasLiteraryFestival.org, or contact Brad Mooy at bmooy@cals.org or 501-918-3098. For information on volunteering at the Festival, contact Angela Delaney atadelaney@cals.org or 501-918-3095.