Last night Seattle was royally treated to its first major concert at the newly renovated Langston Hughes Performing Arts Center (LHPAC). The star was Jennifer Johns, Langston Hughes Performing Arts Center’s inaugural Artist in Residence, from Oakland, CA. She was chosen for her internationally recognized talents and dedication to community building. Johns has graced the stage with Lauryn Hill, The Black Eyed Peas, Mos Def and Blackalicious to name a few. She is a fellow for Green for All, Bold Foods and Food First and has travelled for the last couple of years inquiring about people’s definitions of poverty and sustainable living.
Beside the artist, a number of other local and national personalities were at the performance. One of the more interesting was Moni T. Law (from Berkeley), an actress that has received numerous roles as a look-alike for First Lady Michelle Obama.
However, the real performance was on stage as Ms Johns and friends, put on an unbelievable show and one not to be missed.
- Johns’ friends included:
- Erwin E. A. Thomas| Director/Narrator
- Gabriel Teodros| MC/Graphic Design
- Yirim Seck| MC
- Felicia V. Loud| Vocalist/MC
- Thione Diop| Percussionist
- Aaron Walker-Loud| Drums
- Paris King| Guitar
- Keith Judelman| Piano
- Owuar Arunga| Trumpet
- Senaiest Zerom| Vocalist
- Ranaie Berhe| Vocalist
- Rokea Jones| Chef
- Kevin Harkins| Tech Virtuoso
The audience (see photos) was extremely diverse as well as the topics the show addressed such as Social Justice, Food First, Sustainability, Hip Hop and the Arts of the African Diaspora. Further, this performance just underscores the strength, outreach and vision of the LHPAC in that it and its mission brings an art and a message that’s universal and serves a total community not just any one group of citizens.
Welcome back Langston Hughes Performing Arts Center, with performances like this one, you will be around for a long time.
|Artistic Director, Jackie Moscou and Executive Director, Royal Alley Barnes|