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Black Artists You Should Know: James Weldon Johnson

Some people are defined by a singular skill or specific contribution to society. Then there are those of us who have so much to give, their impact can be found across multiple disciplines touch a wide away of groups and people. Such is the case with composer, playwright, teacher, author, and poet James Weldon Johnson.

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Pretty Little Salma: an Educational Debut

 Dir. of Marketing and Programming Lynn Duvall introducing  Storytelling Through Music

Dir. of Marketing and Programming Lynn Duvall introducing Storytelling Through Music

It was that time of year once again for Free Fun Fridays in the city of Boston. I am thankful to the Museum of African American History for allowing COOS Educational Director Seychelle Dunn-Corbin and I to debut my new educational seminar Storytelling Through Music. Participants laughed, sang, and solved problems with us as we learned how music can be used to enhance Niki Daly's Pretty Little Salma. An Africanized retelling of Red Riding Hood, Niki Daly's tale allowed us to introduce to audiences how music can be used to symbolize objects and enhance the movements of the actors on stage. This gave a new meaning and life to how music can be used to represent the emotions that music can convey.

Storytelling Through Music was well received by our debut audience! They watched with trepidation as Mr. Dog (convincingly played by Ms. Dunn-Corbin) tricked Salma (played by yours truly) to turn over her favorite distinctive trinkets so that he could impersonate Salma at Granny's house. After our galvanized group effort to save Granny from Mr. Dog's clutches, thanks to help from the audience, they got to celebrate with us once Salma had been reunited with her family.

All and all, Seychelle and I had a wonderful time wearing our acting hats and look forward to sharing Pretty Little Salma with more audiences to come this COOS season.

Pretty Little Salma is published by Clarion Books and is available for purchase on amazon.

 
 Seychelle and I in costume as Pretty Little Salma and Mr. Dog!

Seychelle and I in costume as Pretty Little Salma and Mr. Dog!

Want to bring Storytelling Through Music or another one of the COOS educational seminars to your school or community center? Contact Educational Director Seychelle Dunn to schedule a performance!