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Black Tie International:
8th Annual Black History Month Celebration





delancyhill LAW FIRM



South Miami-Dade Cultural Arts Center (SMDCAC) celebrates Black History Month with a presentation of the Langston Hughes Project, Ask Your Mama, Twelve Moods for Jazz on Thursday, February 23 at 8p.m. on the main stage. The performance features the Ron McCurdy Quartet with celebrity spoken word artist Malcolm Jamal-Warner. As part of this special evening, delancyhill law firm will host their 8th Annual Black History Month Celebration with a VIP reception honoring Miami-Dade County Commissioner Dennis C. Moss at 6p.m. in the Black Box Studio. Proceeds from the VIP Reception will benefit SMDCAC’s education and outreach programs.

Tickets to the performance are $30, $20, $10 ($5 tickets  ), $5 off orchestra level seats for students seniors and active military service members. Tickets to the VIP reception are $50 and includes entrance to the performance. The public should contact SMDCAC’s Box Office at 786-573-5300 or visit . SMDCAC is located at 10950 SW 211 Street, Cutler Bay.

The Ron McCurdy Quartet performs Langston Hughes’ insightful, wise, poignant, funny and soulful, poem accompanied by celebrity spoken word artist Malcolm Jamal-Warner, most famous for his role on “The Cosby Show” and his recent sitcom, “Reed Between the Lines”. The performance includes video images of the Harlem Renaissance by African-American artists and photographers including Jacob Lawrence, Gordon Parks and Romare Bearden.

Ask Your Mama is an 800-line, twelve part poetic suite written by noted African American poet/writer/playwright Langston Hughes in 1961. This work is described as a multimedia presentation that recreates Hughes’ vision of the global struggle for freedom in the coming, turbulent decade.

The piece itself is an original work conceived by USC Professor and Chair of Jazz Studies Dr. Ron McCurdy . A scholarly exploration of the original work by Dr. McCurdy revealed that Hughes had originally included musical cues to accompany his poem, intending to work with musical contemporaries on a full production; regrettably, Hughes died in 1967 before a production could be developed.

“I felt that the unrealized work had enormous potential, not only to entertain, but more importantly to introduce modern audiences to the power of Hughes’ words and the eloquence of his political discourse,” said McCurdy

A collaborative effort between McCurdy and film maker Damani Baker expanded on Hughes’ original concept, adding an accompanying jazz suite based on Hughes’ original notes, composed and arranged by McCurdy and Eli Brueggeman. McCurdy presents The Langston Hughes Project in both performances and master classes on the college circuit and for African American Heritage celebrations throughout the nation.

Information about The Langston Hughes Project is available at: .

“As children of the South Miami-Dade County, my law partner and I are proud to return home to our community where the South Miami-Dade Cultural Arts Center shines as a jewel for our artistic soul and heritage. We are thankful for a community that gave us so much,” stated Marlon Hill, founding partner, delancyhill, P.A.

Sponsors and community partners of the 8th Annual Black History Month Celebration will include Bilmor with Advertising Specialties, Caribbean Today, Chef Irie Spice, Circle of One Marketing, Community Bank of Florida, Mercedes Benz of Cutler Bay, Invizio, Medium Four, Richhaus Media, and South Florida Caribbean News.

About the Artists

Malcolm Jamal-Warner

Emmy-nominated actor and director Malcolm-Jamal Warner
has become known in the entertainment business for not only his seasoned acting talents, but also his accomplishments on the music, directing, and producing fronts, making him one of the most accomplished talents in the industry today. As a staple in television and film for over twenty-five years, Warner first rose to national prominence by starring on the celebrated and long-running classic television series “The Cosby Show.” His work on the show garnered him a Primetime Emmy Nomination for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series, and set the stage for him to have a long career in the public eye. Most recently, Warner has been seen on some of the hottest television series on television, including a notable, recurring role on NBC's hit show “Community,” and guest star roles on TNT's “Hawthorne,” CBS' “The Cleaner,”and Showtime's “Dexter.” In October 2011, Warner will return to television, starring on the highly anticipated, BET original series “Reed Between the Lines.” The series will follow the lives of Alex, an English professor, [played by Warner] and Carla, a psychologist, [played by Tracee Ellis Ross] as they navigate life's ups and downs with wit and humor.

As a seasoned director, Warner has worked on an abundance of television series, including being a regular director [and producer] on the comedy series “Malcolm & Eddie,” and also having directed several episodes of “The Cosby Show,” “All That,” “Keenan & Kel,” “The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air,” “Sesame Street,” and the AIDS awareness video “Timeout: The Truth about HIV, AIDS, and YOU” [which starred Magic Johnson and Arsenio Hall, and earned Warner the NAACP Key of Life Image Award]. His short film, “This Old Man,” received critical acclaim on the theater festival circuit. Warner is continuing his passion of directing now, and is slated to direct episodes of his upcoming series, “Reed Between the Lines.”

In addition to his television credits, Warner made his feature film debut in Paramount Pictures DROP ZONE, and was also seen in Warner Bros Pictures FOOLS GOLD opposite Matthew McConaughey, Kate Hudson, and Donald Sutherland. He also co-starred in the independent films RESTAURANT with Adrien Brody, A FARE TO REMEMBER, and THE LIST with Wayne Brady. On stage, Warner has starred in the off-Broadway plays “Three Ways Home,” “Cryinʼ Shame,” for which he received the NAACP Theater Award for Best Supporting Actor, “Freefall” at the Victory Garden Theatre in Chicago, and in “A Midsummer Nightsʼ Dream,” at the La Jolla Playhouse in California. Most recently, Warner received critical acclaim for his West Coast debut of his one-man theatrical production of “Love and Other Social Issues.”Warner's voice may be as well known as his likeness, for four seasons he was heard as the voice of the “Producer” on PBS'  “The Magic School Bus.” Currently, he can be heard on the audio book version of “The Marvelous Effect” published by Berkley Trade, as well as in Simon & Schuster's “Fatherhood” by Bill Cosby. When not acting and directing, Warner is a poet and a bass player. His jazz-funk band Miles Long has performed in several major jazz festivals, including the Playboy Jazz Festival, and has opened for high profile artists including Earl Klugh and the late Luther Vandross, and he recently performed at the historic Apollo Theater. Both of Warner's independently distributed CD's, “The Miles Long Mix Tape” and “Love and Other Social Issues,” which have become popular on the underground music scene, can now be purchased on iTunes and . Warner currently lives in LosAngeles, California.

Dr. Ronald C. McCurdy

Dr. Ronald C. McCurdy is Professor of Music in the Thornton School of Music at the University of Southern California (USC) and is Past President of the International Association of Jazz Educators (IAJE). Prior to his appointment at USC he served as Director of the Thelonious Monk Institute of Jazz at USC. He has served as Professor of Music and chair of the Afro-African American Studies Department and served as Director of Jazz Studies at the University of Minnesota. In 1997, Dr. McCurdy served as Visiting Professor at Maria-Sklodowska- Curie University in Lublin, Poland. In 2001 Dr. McCurdy received the Distinguished Alumni Award from the University of Kansas.

Dr. McCurdy recently released CD titled, Once Again for the First Time on the INNOVA label and is author of Meet the Great Jazz Legends, published by Alfred Publishing Co. Dr. McCurdy is co-author of a vocal jazz improvisation series titled Approaching the Standards, published by Warner Bros. He is currently touring The Langston Hughes Project, Ask Your Mama: 12 Mood for Jazz. The multimedia presentation features jazz quartet, spoken-word and images from the Harlem Renaissance.

Dr. McCurdy is in demand as a guest clinician, soloist, speaker, director of honor Jazz Ensembles and Choirs throughout the United States and Canada. He has directed All State Jazz Ensembles in New York, Texas, Arizona, Vermont, Nebraska, Ohio, Nevada, Illinois, Oklahoma, and Florida to name a few. Dr. McCurdy received his undergraduate degree from Florida A & M University and his Masters and Ph. D. degrees from the University of Kansas.

Dr. McCurdy is a consultant to the Grammy Foundation educational programs including serving as director of the National Grammy Vocal Jazz Ensemble. He served as Director of the Walt Disney All-American Summer College Jazz Ensemble and Jazz Singers in Orlando, Florida for seven years and continues to serve as a consultant for the college program. A few of the guest artists he has worked with include Joe Williams, Rosemary Clooney, Leslie Uggams, Arturo Sandoval, Diane Schuur, Ramsey Lewis, Mercer Ellington, Dr. Billy Taylor, Maynard Ferguson, Lionel Hampton, and Dianne Reeves. He has served as a member of the Jamey Aebersold Jazz Camp faculty. Dr. McCurdy is a performing artist for the Yamaha International Corporation.

The South Miami-Dade Cultural Arts Center is managed by the Miami-Dade County Department of Cultural Affairs, with funding support from the Office of the Miami-Dade County Mayor and Board of County Commissioners. The Center is dedicated to presenting and supporting arts and culture and providing access to the arts to the entire Miami-Dade County community.

About the Building

South Miami-Dade Cultural Arts Center serves as a showcase for the performing and media arts, welcoming people from all backgrounds and economic means. The facility includes 966 seat state-of-the- art theater, which features a fly tower, orchestra pit, front of house spaces (box office, lobby, concessions, etc.) and back of house support spaces (dressing rooms, storage and work areas, administrative offices, etc.). The site also includes an activities building which houses lab / experimental theaters, and may be used for classrooms, rehearsals, and small-scale performances. A beautiful outdoor plaza allows for festivals, art shows, and other outdoor activities. The concert lawn “back yard” slopes to the Black Creek Canal, and can host outdoor concerts, performances and events.

About delancyhill, P.A.

With satellite offices in the downtown Miami, Kendall-Dadeland, and Miramar, Florida, and the innovative use of cloud office technology, delancyhill, P.A. serves as outside general counsel to corporations, entrepreneurs, small businesses, and municipal corporations in civil and commercial litigation and transactional matters. The firm practices in the areas of commercial, real estate/construction, and administrative litigation, as well as, general corporate, real estate, intellectual property, government, and immigration transactional matters. For additional information about the Firm, please call (786) 777-0184 or visit .

The Miami-Dade County Department of Cultural Affairs and the Cultural Affairs Council develop cultural excellence, diversity and participation throughout Miami-Dade County by strategically creating and promoting opportunities for artists and cultural organizations, and our residents and visitors who are their audiences. The Department directs the Art in Public Places program and its board, the Art in Public Places Trust, commissioning, curating, maintaining and promoting the County’s award-winning public art collection. Through staff, board and programmatic resources, the Department, the Council and the Trust promote, coordinate and support Miami-Dade County’s more than 1,000 not-for-profit cultural organizations as well as thousands of resident artists through grants, technical assistance, public information and interactive community planning. The Department receives funding through the Miami-Dade County Mayor and Board of County Commissioners, The Children’s Trust, the National Endowment for the Arts, the State of Florida through the Florida Department of State, Division of Cultural Affairs and the Florida Council on Arts and Culture, and the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation. Other support and services are provided by TicketWeb for the Culture Shock Miami program, the Greater Miami Convention and Visitors Bureau, the South Florida Cultural Consortium and the Tourist Development Council.


Joyce Brooks

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