Get Out: BAM Cafe Live, Black Cinema Film Festival and Saul Williams

Culture, art and film events are buzzing this weekend for Black History Month! There's so much to do, we could hardly fit it into one post!

WHAT: BAM Café Live: Aziza and Friends Present “Music From My DNA”

WHEN/WHERE: Friday, February 15, 9:30 p.m., Bam Café, Peter Jay Sharp Building, 30 Lafayette Avenue

WHY GO: Aziza, aka Linda Williams, was Natalie Cole’s music director and taught music to a teenage Alicia Keys before stepping into the spotlight herself. And she has the performance chops to match. Delivering velvety R&B and funky soul, the magnetic singer and keyboardist comes to BAMcafé Live for Valentine’s Day weekend to present a set of highly personal songs exploring the contours of love. Food and drink available for sale.



WHAT: New Voices in Black Cinema Film Festival Weekend

WHEN/WHERE: Saturday, February 16, BAM Rose Cinemas, 30 Lafayette Avenue

12pm: The United States of Hoodoo

2pm: (panel) Wild West 2.0 - Creating, Crowdfunding, and Capturing
An Audience for your Content Online - at South Oxford Space

3pm: High Chicago

6pm: Aujourd'hui (Tey)

9:15pm: FunkJazz Kafé: Diary of a Decade

WHY GO: This third annual film festival features a wide-array of films that both represent and challenge Black cultural and family dynamics. Co-presented by ActNow Foundation. Since its founding in 2005, ActNow Foundation has been a stepping-stone for filmmakers, playwrights and artists interested in working for non-profit arts organizations. ActNow hosts regular events in Brooklyn to showcase the best in independent theater and film. Additionally, they are dedicated to fostering the growth of New York’s brightest and most talented artists through our playwright and actor workshops.

HOW MUCH: $13. Get tickets for this show and all shows here.


WHAT: The Freedom Fighters Exhibit and Brunch (Heroes and False Idols: A Tribute to Black History Month)

WHEN/WHERE: Saturday, February 16, 2:00 p.m. – 5:00 p.m., SoCo Brooklyn, 509 Myrtle Avenue

WHY GO: The “Freedom Fighters: Heroes and False Idols” Exhibit – is a tribute to Black History Month, celebrating heroes and icons that assisted in shaping black history in America through their philosophies, activism, art, music, sports and personal sacrifices. The exhibit includes illustrations depicting the historical and mainstream impact people of the African Diaspora has had on the cultural fabric of the United States.  The exhibition questions whether some icons are heroes or false idols, yet we leave it up to the viewer to judge and determine why these personalities are celebrated. Works will include paintings, superimposed graphic portraits and mixed media art. This exhibit will be presented by SoCo Brooklyn, curated by Rasu Jilani of Coup d’etat Arts and is part of the Myrtle Avenue Brooklyn Partnership Black History Month Programming: "Black Artstory Month on Myrtle". The exhibit will be available until the end of the month.

HOW MUCH: The cost of brunch


WHAT: Film & Discussion: Prep School Negro

WHEN/WHERE: Saturday, February 16, 4:00 p.m., Brooklyn Public Library, The Dweck Center, 10 Grand Army Plaza

WHY GO: This film and discussion is a part of the Brooklyn Public Library’s Black History Month programming. “Prep School Negro” is a documentary that looks at the hurdles faced by prep school students of color, namely filmmaker André Robert Lee, whose full scholarship for an elite education cost more than anyone could have anticipated. After the screening, stay for a discussion with Lee on accelerated desegregation and racial naïveté.



WHAT: BAM Café Live: Music and Words, a Performance by Saul Williams

WHEN/WHERE: Saturday, February 16, 9:30 p.m., Bam Café, Peter Jay Sharp Building, 30 Lafayette Avenue

WHY GO: Eminent poet, actor, and musician Saul Williams has garnered countless accolades across genres and styles. Crowned the Nuyorican Poets Café’s Grand Slam Champion in 1996, he has appeared in numerous films (Slam, Lackawana Blues, K-PAX); performed with artists like Nas and Blackalicious; and collaborated with producers like Trent Reznor on albums that set the bar ever and ever higher for progressive hip-hop. He appears at BAMcafé Live following the BAMcinématek screening of the Williams vehicle Aujourd'hui (Tey), part of the series Act Now: New Voices in Black Cinema.


Rebelwithacause February 17, 2013 at 04:06 PM
The "Freedom Fighters" event never happened! Soco was packed, yet there was no exhibit to speak of. This so-called event appears to have been a ploy to get customers into the restaurant to spend money. A huge disappointment and waste of time. Many people came from the outer boroughs to attend only to sit and listen to music?! I could do that in my home. Shame on you Soco lounge!
Arts4BK February 19, 2013 at 08:18 PM
I just wanted to poke my head in and say I was there on Saturday and it was a great event! There were- in my memory- at least 15-20 pieces on the walls and since it was not billed as a full on art exhibit and was also billed as a brunch- that's exactly what it was. A combo of both. Myself and everyone I know who stopped through had an amazing time! Props to Rasu and Coup d'etat!
Rasu February 20, 2013 at 08:32 PM
Dear Rebelwithacause, The Freedom Fighters event did actually happen! I am sorry you may have turned away prematurely.. Saturday, February 16th, 2013, Coup d'etat Arts in collaboration with SocoBK hosted an "Art Brunch". The intention of the event was to provide an unconventional platform for Artists who would normally show art in a gallery. I am a major supporter of the idea that art doesn't just belong in a gallery or museum, but art belongs everywhere - as a reminder that art is life and life is art. I do not work for the restaurant, so the suggestion of the Art Brunch being a "ploy to get customers into the restaurant" is untrue. However the mission of the collaborative effort was to celebrate local black artists paired with locally, black-owned businesses for Black History Month (as a part of Myrtle Avenue Brooklyn Partnership's "Black Artstory Month.) Unfortunately, the implications of your comments can be damaging to the reputations me (as an art producer) and the restaurant which happens to be a very well ran Black-owned business. The exhibit is still happening for the remainder of the month! If you have time, please go back to restaurant and check it out. I'd love for you to actually see what you came to see, Saturday. Here are some images of last weekend exhibit: http://bed-stuy.patch.com/articles/photos-arts-brunch-at-soco-brooklyn#photo-13412646 Thank you for your support. Rasu.


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