Black Renaissance & Chill: Finish Black History Month Strong With This Week's Virtual Events

Illustration for article titled Black Renaissance & Chill: Finish Black History Month Strong With This Week's Virtual Events
Image: Courtesy of YouTube Originals

Well folks, it seems that we’ve come to the end of this year’s Black History Month Road—but I can’t let you go just yet without providing another installment of virtual events to help you say goodbye the right way. However, there is good news to report! Next month is Women’s History Month—or as we call it, “Black HerStory Month”—and since we here at The Root celebrate all things Black, I’d like to leave you with a haiku to welcome the transition: All Black women are bomb. All Black women are hella lit. Black women are everything. Because all Black women have always been it. (Okay, so maybe that wasn’t really a traditional haiku but, you get the point.) Anyway, onto the virtual events!

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First up, I’d like to highlight a few pretty fantastic happenings:

 “Her Love Below,” an IG Live Series presented by My Brown Box in partnership with Planned Parenthood, has been celebrating and contemplating the many ways in which Black women create agency around our bodies, pleasure, and sexual health. Using Planned Parenthood’s “Stand With Black Women” campaign as a lens, “Her Love Below” serves as an intimate testimony of the many ways in which Black women have created Black joy by re-defining their own paths toward sexual, mental and physical freedom and wellness. The last live of the series is tonight and features Zen & Kush founder Lizzy Jeff in conversation with Nicole Moore of Planned Parenthood. To join the conversation, be sure to tune into My Brown Box’s Instagram at 7 p.m. ET. You can also watch all three previous conversations there as well.

Illustration for article titled Black Renaissance & Chill: Finish Black History Month Strong With This Week's Virtual Events
Image: Courtesy of Planned Parenthood and My Brown Box

What’s next in fashion? New York Fashion Week may have been brief this year, but you can still see what’s trending. Emerge!, one of a few innovative virtual events featuring Black designers aired their 10th Anniversary Fashion Show Special during the week; hosted by Fashion Bomb Daily’s Claire Sulmers, the special highlighted unique design, creativity and innovation, as Emerge! celebrated 10 years of diversity on the runway. Celebrity stylist Law Roach also received the 2021 Fashion Innovator Award with Andre’ Leon Talley and Fern Mallis making guest appearances as well. The special is available to view on demand by visiting here.

Illustration for article titled Black Renaissance & Chill: Finish Black History Month Strong With This Week's Virtual Events
Image: Emerge!

Lastly, Broadway and Beyond TV is closing out Black History Month with a slew of all new programming and shows focus on leading Black theatre-makers. From February 24-27th, viewers can catch several enlightening conversations hosted by Catherine Schreiber with influential Broadway artists such as Stephen Byrd, Alia Jones-Harvey, Paul Tazewell, and Colleen Jennings-Roggensack. Each episode will be available on Broadway and Beyond TV’s website and social channels, Reach TV and Catherine Schreiber Productions.

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February 25

At 7p.m. ET, join Human Rights Campaign (HRC) President Alphonso David for ‘Honoring The Past, Making History Today: LGBTQ Black History Month — Honor, Celebrate, and Dream.” The virtual panel discussion will start with a special introductory conversation on the Equality Act followed by a larger conversation on the impact that Black LGBTQ history continues to have on the trajectory of the LGBTQ and Black liberation movements. For the first time ever, all six of the nationally influential organizations represented on this panel are being led by Black executive directors. Those directors include National Center for Lesbian Rights Executive Director Imani Rupert-Gordon, National LGBTQ Task Force Executive Director Kierra Johnson, Black and Pink Executive Director Dominique Morgan, National Black Justice Coalition Executive Director David Johns, and GLSEN Interim Executive Director Melanie Willingham-Jaggers. The event is free, but you must RSVP.

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Illustration for article titled Black Renaissance & Chill: Finish Black History Month Strong With This Week's Virtual Events
Image: Human Rights Campaign

City Park Foundation’s SummerStage Anywhere will be sharing an exclusive presentation of Michael Mwenso: Hope, Resist & Heal, Performance and Conversation with Shannon Effinger. Growing up an African-born queer man in London and New York, Mwenso will dive into a wide range of his own discoveries while shedding light on the Black experience through interludes of his music. A live studio recording performance with his group, Mwenso and the Shakes, a multicultural New York jazz group will be paired with an intimate conversation with arts journalist Shannon Effinger that will focus on the continuum and power of Black roots music. The free presentation will be available to view at 7 p.m. ET on SummerStage Anywhere’s website and all social channels.

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Illustration for article titled Black Renaissance & Chill: Finish Black History Month Strong With This Week's Virtual Events
Image: Courtesy of SummerStage Anywhere

America’s Black Holocaust Museum will host its first book club of 2021 to celebrate the birthday of its founder, the late Dr. James Cameron. The ABHM Book Club will read Dr. Cameron’s memoir, A Time of Terror: A Survivor’s Story, which recounts his experience surviving a lynching in 1930 when he was just 16 years old. Book Club participants will need to secure their own copies. Dr. Cameron’s book can be found at your nearest library branch or anywhere that books are sold. If you are having trouble finding a copy, please email admin@abhmuseum.org. The ABHM Book Club discussion will take place via Zoom starting at 6 p.m. ET. For more information on how to register, be sure to visit the ABHM Facebook page or website.

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92Y is bringing together a group of the nation’s most celebrated Black scholars, critics and writers for a yearlong series on all the novels of Toni Morrison—from The Bluest Eye, which she wrote between her day job as a book editor and her life as a single mother; to God Help the Child, from which she read on the 92Y stage in 2015, the last of her many appearances over the years. Each scholar will deliver a 45-minute lecture on a novel and engage in a Q&A via Zoom’s chat feature. First up is The Bluest Eye with Yvette Christiansë. To take part in the conversation be sure to go here.

February 26

Join ‘me too.’ and the Movement For Black Lives for an intimate conversation about how we as a community can take the next step in showing up for Black Survivors in beyond Black History x Black Futures Month. Cultural Engineer and Mass Engagement Organizer with the Movement for Black Lives Fresco Steez and Director of Programs at ‘me too.’ International Shesheena Bray will discuss seeking answers to the question of how survivors are integral to Black liberation and how to address strengthening the bridge between these movements. The talk is going down at 6 p.m. ET on ‘me too.’s Instagram page, so make sure you turn your notifications on so you don’t miss out.

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In partnership with Choose Chicago, The League of Chicago Theatres is putting on a reimagined Theatre Week for 2021 (#CTW21). Chicago Theatre Week, an annual celebration of the rich tradition of theatre-going in Chicago, is in its ninth year and is currently going on now through March 7, 2021. Chicago Theatre Week 2021 will shift the focus of the celebration to support theatres and engage with digital content. Find more information at ChicagoTheatreWeek.com.

YouTube Originals, in partnership with Google Arts & Culture will premiere Black Renaissance: a new special celebrating the contributions of Black History makers who shaped the world with powerful performances, history breaks and inspirational calls-to-action from living legends about the Black creatives and artists who have fueled change. Special guests include President Obama, Michelle Obama, Stacey Abrams, H.E.R., Anderson .Paak, Kelly Rowland, Jason Reynolds, Killer Mike, Desus Nice & The Kid Mero, Jemele Hill, artist Shantell Martin, Tobe Nwigwe, Bob the Drag Queen, Ziwe Fumudoh, Maurice Harris, Yung BBQ, Nicole Byer, and so many more. Check out the trailer below and be sure to catch Black Renaissance on the YouTube Originals channel.

February 27

The collective 25 Black Women in Beauty will be hosting a full day summit on topics shaping Black Women and the Future of Beauty. From emerging brands, product innovation, insight and Black muses redefining the beauty landscape, they hope to provide various sessions packed with information and a healthy dose of inspiration. Featured speaker include CEO and Co-Owner of Black Opal Desiree Rogers, Vice President of Marketing at Ulta Beauty Karla Davis, Founder and CEO of Camille Rose Organics Janell Stephens, Chief Marketing Officer of Tatcha Sarah Curtis Henry and many more. Capacity is limited so for more information on how to secure your seat, visit here.

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Illustration for article titled Black Renaissance & Chill: Finish Black History Month Strong With This Week's Virtual Events
Image: Courtesy of 25BWB

Fresh Prince of Bel-Air star Janet Hubert will star in a virtual reading of Douglas Lyons’ family comedy, Chicken and Biscuits at 8:00p.m. ET to benefit Lyon’s The Next Wave Initiative. The comedy centers an African-American family who becomes forced to confront their skeletons head on, as sisters attempt to put their differences aside to bury their father. Chicken and Biscuits stars Janet Hubert as Baneatta, Michael Urie as Logan, Carly Hughes as Brianna, Danny Johnson  as Reginald, Alana Raquel Bowers as Simone, Ebony Marshall-Oliver as Beverly, Devere Rogers as Kenny, and Aigner Mizzelle as La’trice. Next Wave is a series of scholarships gifted to young Black college theatre artists, crowning them for their work and encouraging them to push forward. The reading will stream live on Saturday with a recorded version of the event available to view on demand through March 3. Tickets to the event are donation only and can be obtained by visiting here.

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Illustration for article titled Black Renaissance & Chill: Finish Black History Month Strong With This Week's Virtual Events
Image: Courtesy of Douglas Lyons Productions


February 28

At 2 p.m. ET, SFJAZZ will host a FREE virtual panel discussion that will examine the current state of the intersection of jazz and race and its historical context from the music’s inception to the present day, hosted by educator, author, and SFJAZZ Board Trustee Claude Steele. Panelists for this discussion include four world-renowned artists and writers with unique perspectives on the subject: drummer and composer Terri Lyne Carrington; former-NYTimes jazz critic and author Nate Chinen; author, educator and SFJAZZ Board Trustee Angela Davis; and multi-instrumentalist and vocalist Rhiannon Giddens. A Q&A session will follow the discussion, allowing viewers to submit questions to the panelists. Registration is required, so be sure to visit their website.

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March 3

The Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco has procured a selection of forthcoming virtual programming and community partnerships for the spring and summer of 2021. The lineup centers around the Museums’ new Virtual Wednesdays initiative. Notably, a new partnership with the SeeBlackWomxn collective will launch a five-part event series to discuss the future of aesthetic and somatic expression in the contemporary Black Arts scene. Contributing their voices and perspectives to the Museums’ programming are artists Lava Thomas (discussing the Maya Angelou monument), Catherine Wagner, and Alison Saar, classical-music organization Mercury Soul, Fredrika Newton of the Dr. Huey P. Newton Foundation, the #SayHerName Movement, Susan Cervantes of the Precita Eyes Muralists, artist duo Rue Bainbridge, artist and composer Gryphon Rue, artist Peter Simensky, mindfulness coach Nkechi Deanna Njaka, and more. This Wednesday’s programming will feature The Dr. Huey P. Newton Foundation as they reflect on and celebrate Dr. Newton’s Legacy. For more info, visit here.

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