Monday, September 23, 2019

A reinterpretation of 'The Jazz Singer' on the Lower East Side

[Art by Jarrett Key @jar.key]

Abrons Arts Center is staging a production of The Jazz Singer, directed by East Village resident Joshua William Gelb.

Some details via the EVG inbox...

Abrons Arts Center is proud to present the world premiere of jazz singer, a theatrical exhumation of the first feature-length “sound film” The Jazz Singer, reinterpreted by director and performer Joshua William Gelb and composer and performer Nehemiah Luckett.

Set on the Lower East Side, the 1927 film tells the story of a “jazz crooner” forced to choose between his immigrant Jewish heritage and his aspirations of becoming a Broadway star. Though the film is historically significant for its integration of synchronized sound, it is most remembered for its controversial use of blackface. Gelb and Luckett’s musical rendering offers a contemporary take on this distinctly American story, one that interrogates appropriation, assimilation, atonement, and whether escape from the specter of blackface is possible.

The production opens tomorrow (Tuesday) evening and runs through Oct. 12 at the Abrons Arts Center, 466 Grand St. in the Henry Street Settlement. Find more details on tickets and the staging at this link.

No comments: