Celebrate the Harvest Moon Festival at Flushing Town Hall

In celebration of the Harvest Moon Festival, Flushing Town Hall is presenting virtual Asian programming this season with a focus on highlighting stories of Asian/Asian American experience. The festival, also known as the Mid-Autumn Festival, celebrates the time when the moon is brightest and offers an opportunity to gather together and give thanks for the harvest. Aligning with the spirit of appreciating hard works done in the past and celebrating present time with friends and family, the series bring the audience through a music journey of blending old and new while offer stories of revealing one’s family story and experience of establishing new life in the U.S.

True to its mission to bring people together in a global community, Flushing Town Hall’s presentations are designed for people of all ages and—now that the venue’s programming is virtual amid COVID-19–from all parts of the globe.

The season features psychedelic Korean folk group Coreyah on September 29 (in partnership with Global Music Month 2020); Spica Wobbe’s Hand in Hand storytelling through shadow theater from September 30 to October 15; and, a play reading of Marcus Yi’s Lucky 88 on October 4.

Audiences should tune in on September 29 at 7:00 PM EDT to experience Coreyah, a psychedelic Korean folk music group whose six members integrate traditional Korean instruments, vocals, guitar, and percussion. The prerecorded concert will stream on YouTube at www.youtube.com/flushingtownhall.

Since their 2010 debut, Coreyah has pioneered a new style of Korean music that blends genres of contemporary ethnic and popular sounds while still maintaining the distinctive characteristics of traditional Korean instruments. The group’s unique freewheeling, polystylistic vision combines a variety of influences, including Anglo-American rock, Balkan gypsy, and genres from South America and Africa.

The band consists of Kim Dongkun (daegeum, sogeum, tungso), Ham Boyoung (vocal), Kim Chorong (percussion, Chulhyungeum), Kyungyi (percussion), Na Sunjin (geomungo), and Ko Jaehyeon (guitar).

Coreyah will perform music from their latest album, “Clap & Applause”, which was released in July 2020 and showcases their long-standing effort to infuse pop into traditional music through bold, youthful style, heartfelt lyrics, and a psychedelic sound. The album celebrates their 10th anniversary with a dance-inducing, exciting new vision for Korean world music.

The name Coreyah is a Sino-Korean homonym that refers to the inheritance of the past and also in Korean means “whale”—the group’s totem animal and good luck charm. Coreyah has toured around the world visiting over 50 cities in 34 countries, and continues to delight audiences at home and abroad. Learn more at http://www.flushingtownhall.org/coreyah.

This program is presented in partnership with Global Music Month 2020, a month-long, online festival of global music featuring concerts, presentations and panels, running now through October 1. GMM 2020 combines 19 different U.S. and Canadian festivals and presenters’ events under one banner for a celebration of international music. Each online event is unique — with no repeat performers — offering a mix of livestreams and archived performances. Learn more at https://www.globalmusicmonth.org.

Also on tap, starting September and all through October, Spica Wobbe will present Hand in Hand: Storytelling Through Shadow Puppetry, a three-part series with performance and workshops in English and Mandarin. In the performance (for audiences age 10 and older), a mother holds her daughter’s hand, which conveys how the previous generation took care of the next generation. Through shadow puppets, light, music and storytelling, it also tells how a self-taught artist, Ms. Shia Zhaozhi, used her paintings to document her life stories growing up in Taipei, Taiwan and a moving conversation between a mother and a daughter who moves abroad.

Follow the performance, there will be a storytelling workshop and a shadow theater workshop, and participants will have a chance to create their own story and bring it to life with shadow puppetry.

Spica Wobbe (Shu-yun Cheng) is a puppetry artist – and a Flushing Town Hall Teaching Artist – originally from Taiwan. Her work has been seen in Taiwan, Hong Kong, Korea, Japan, Holland, Germany, Israel, Austria and the U.S.  Now based in NYC, she works as a puppetry designer, performer and educator.  She received her M.A. in Educational Theater from New York University in 2003.  She established Double Image Theater Lab in 2011 to create cross-cultural productions that explore the world of the past and the present.  Spica received the Exemplary Teaching Artist Award from New York University in 2014. She is a two-time recipient of the Jim Henson Foundation grant and is a 2015 Sandglass Theater New Vision Series Resident Artist. Spica was the featured artist in Shadow, Light… Hide & Seek Exhibit at WenShan Theater in Taipei in 2015 and “Heaven of Puppets Exhibit” at Taipei Puppet Museum in 2016.

Both the storytelling workshop and the shadow theater workshop encourages participants to create their original stories, make shadow puppets and perform together with their family members.

Hand in Hand will be presented in English on September 30, and October 7 and 13; and in Mandarin on October 1, 8 and 15. All presentations will be at 7:00 PM EDT. To learn more about the program and updates on how to RSVP, please visit: http://flushingtownhall.org/hand-in-hand. Although it is highly encouraged that people attend all three events in the series, audiences can select any number of events (and content will still be understandable).

Wrapping up the special programming will be a play reading of Marcus Yi’s Lucky 88 Food Court the Musical on October 4 at 2:00 PM EDT, presented in partnership with the Queens Council on the Arts as part of the Artist Commissioning Program. The new, two-hour virtual musical theatre play reading is inspired by all of the food courts in Flushing, using this environment to explore the multi-faceted lives of people that the average American might not otherwise get a chance to know. Discover more at http://www.flushingtownhall.org/acp-live.

The show focuses on three food stalls and the people that work there: 60-year-old Shen Zha Wang at the hand pulled noodle stall struggling to put his son through law school; 50-year-old widow Mei Ling Fu at the dumpling stall who is ready to start dating again; and 50-year-old Si Ling Xiu at the boba tea stall hiding her cancer diagnosis from her daughter.

Marcus Yi is an award-winning musical theater writer and composer based in New York. He was the winner of 11th Annual NJ Playwrights Contest (Musical), was named one of Indie Theater Now’s 2014 People of the Year, an inaugural member of the 92nd Street Y Musical Theater Development Lab Collective, and 2018 member of Prospect Musical Theater Lab. His work has been produced by the National Asian Artists Project, Yangtze Rep, Prospect Theater, Pan Asian Rep, and Ingenue Theater. His musicals have been seen at the New York Times Center, Green Room 42, The Duplex, and National Opera Center.

 Flushing Town Hall’s facilities are temporarily closed to the public in accordance with COVID-19 safety regulations. Flushing Town Hall’s latest statement pertaining to COVID-19 can be found here.

Hot House Profiles Jazz Jam’s Carol Sudhalter

Hot House, New York’s Premier Jazz Guide Since 1982, profiles Carol Sudhalter in its September issue. As many of you know, Carol leads our monthly Jazz Jams (now virtual!).

In the piece – which you can read here – Carol tells Hot House that, “Everything happening in our lives, in our world, is filtering over into jazz. It may change the nature of jazz and bring it to a new phase.”

Since its inception six months ago, Flushing Town Hall’s monthly Virtual Jazz Jam: Celebrating the Legacy of Louis Armstrong has brought hundreds of artists together online, as 15 jammers from anywhere in the world perform. On Wednesday, September 9 at 7:00 PM (EST), Flushing Town Hall’s monthly Jazz Jam will celebrate, “SEPTEMBER: the Season, the Composers, the Artists, Reflections,” when musicians can choose to play “September songs,” or the work of a composer, singer or musician with a September birthday.

The Jazz Jam is led by Astoria resident Carol Sudhalter along with Flushing Town Hall’s house band, comprised of illustrious musicians Joe Vincent Tranchina, Scott Neumann and Eric Lemon. They will pay tribute to the great Louis Armstrong, performing songs associated with the legendary trumpeter/vocalist.  The Louis Armstrong Educational Foundation has supported this jam for many years.

The Jazz Jam is open to amateur and professional musicians, and is part of Flushing Town Hall’s online entertainment series, FTH at Home! While the historic venue’s doors are still closed due to COVID-19, online programming is bringing peopletogether to enjoy music as one—something that is profoundly embedded in Flushing Town Hall’s mission of bringing global arts to a global community.

Every month, the Jazz Jam is open to a maximum of 15 jammers – on a first-come-first-served basis – from anywhere in the world. Participating musicians will perform jazz tunes that celebrate the month of September and remember 9/11. All members of the public are invited to watch the live stream but interested singers and instrumentalists must register to participate (the first 15 to sign up will be featured).

The Jazz Jam has become a haven for jazz lovers from around the world—with participants reaching from New York to Italy to New Zealand. Viewers have tuned in on Facebook from as far as Australia. The virtual Jazz Jam has become another international showcase of the global arts institution. The latest jam on August 12 was viewed by more than 80 people, more visitors than the in-person jam usually hosts. Since the first jam in April, reach on Facebook exceeded 8,900, with nearly 1,000 engagements online—numbers that surpassed the participation and capacity of the venue during previous in-person sessions.

Interested participants should email education@flushingtownhall.org and identify a three- to four-minute tune they intend to share that is in keeping with the theme. It can be live or a pre-recorded audio or video (but not a professional, edited recording). Musicians who already played at any previous virtual jam since April should not apply again, as the venue is rotating in new participants. Audiences can watch this session LIVE and for FREE by simply tuning in to Flushing Town Hall’s Facebook page or Zoom on Wednesday, September 9 at 7:00 PM (EST).

Highlighting stories of Asian/ Asian American experience at Flushing Town Hall

Flushing Town Hall will present virtual Asian programming this fall with a focus on highlighting stories of Asian/ Asian American experience. The season will kick off with a play reading of Jaime Sunwoo’s Specially Processed American Me on September 2, and featuring Spica Wobbe’s Hand in Hand storytelling through shadow theater in September and October, and Marcus Yi’s Lucky 88 premiere on October 4. These stories range from tracing one’s roots and discovering family stories, as well as experience building a new life in America.

The series of events begin with a play reading and talkback of Jaime Sunwoo’s Specially Processed American Me, presented by Queens Council on the Arts’ Artist Commissioning Program (ACP) and Flushing Town Hall, on September 2 from 8:00 PM to 9:30 PM EDT.

The play is a surreal autobiographical performance using SPAM, the canned meat, as a portal into her Asian American upbringing and her family’s experiences of the Korean War. It investigates SPAM’s legacy in the military, its significance in the Asia-Pacific, and its influence on Asian cuisine through music, shadowplay, and cooking. Oscillating wildly between absurd humor and sober tragedy, Specially Processed American Me is a thought-provoking exploration of one of America’s most misunderstood foods.

This event is free though RSVP’s are required. Registered attendees will receive an email with the watch link. Learn more information at http://www.flushingtownhall.org/acp-live.

The play was written by Jaime Sunwoo, directed by Karim Muasher, and dramaturgy and stage management is by Alex Lee. Music, lyrics, and stream tech are by Matt Chilton. Performances are by Jaime Sunwoo, Juella Baltonado, Arielle Rabano, Yurina Kutsukake, Adrianna Mateo, Eunji Lim, and Nathaniel Basch-Gould. Stage directions are read by Vanessa Rappa. Visual designs are provided by Jaime Sunwoo, Kyu Shin, and Cinthia Chen.

Jaime Sunwoo is a Korean American multidisciplinary artist from Brooklyn, New York. She combines video, audio, sculpture, and storytelling to create sensory performances in galleries, theaters, and public spaces. She studied art at Yale University, and is an alum of the Laundromat Project for socially engaged art. Her work has been seen at JACK, Abrons Art Center, BAX, The Tank, Flux Factory, Open Source Gallery, DUMBO Arts Festival, and Art in Odd Places. She is one of the hundred women artists commissioned for Park Avenue Armory’s 100 Years | 100 Women. She was a resident artist for HB Studio Rehearsal Space Residency and received awards from the Queens Council on the Arts’ Artist Commissioning Program and the NYC Women’s Fund for Specially Processed American Me, a performance reflecting on the significance of SPAM in the Asian American community.

On October 4 at 2:00 PM EDT, Queens Council on the Arts and Flushing Town Hall, as part of the Artist Commissioning Program, will present a two-hour virtual showcase of Marcus Yi’s Lucky 88 Food Court the Musical, a new musical theatre piece. Inspired by all of the food courts in Flushing, this new musical uses the food court environment to explore the multi-faceted lives of people that the average American might not otherwise get a chance to know. To learn more, visit http://www.flushingtownhall.org/acp-live.

The show focuses on three food stalls and the people that work there: 60-year-old Shen Zha Wang at the hand pulled noodle stall struggling to put his son through law school; 50-year-old widow Mei Ling Fu at the dumpling stall who is ready to start dating again; and 50-year-old Si Ling Xiu at the boba tea stall hiding her cancer diagnosis from her daughter.

Marcus Yi is an award-winning musical theater writer and composer based in New York. He was the winner of 11th Annual NJ Playwrights Contest (Musical), was named one of Indie Theater Now’s 2014 People of the Year, an inaugural member of the 92nd Street Y Musical Theater Development Lab Collective, and 2018 member of Prospect Musical Theater Lab. His work has been produced by the National Asian Artists Project, Yangtze Rep, Prospect Theater, Pan Asian Rep, and Ingenue Theater. His musicals have been seen at the New York Times Center, Green Room 42, The Duplex, and National Opera Center.

Finally, starting in late September and all through October, Spica Wobbe will present Hand in Hand: Storytelling Through Shadow Puppetry, a three-part series with performance and workshops in English and Mandarin. In the performance (for audiences age 10 and older), a mother holds her daughter’s hand, which conveys how the previous generation took care of the next generation. Through shadow puppets, light, music and storytelling, it also tells how a self-taught artist, Ms. Shia Zhaozhi, used her paintings to document her life stories growing up in Taipei, Taiwan.

Follow the performance, there will be a storytelling workshop and a shadow theater workshop, and participants will have a chance to create their own story and bring it to life with shadow puppetry.

Spica Wobbe (Shu-yun Cheng) is a puppetry artist – and a Flushing Town Hall Teaching Artist – originally from Taiwan. Her work has been seen in Taiwan, Hong Kong, Korea, Japan, Holland, Germany, Israel, Austria and the U.S.  Now based in NYC, she works as a puppetry designer, performer and educator.  She received her M.A. in Educational Theater from New York University in 2003.  She established Double Image Theater Lab in 2011 to create cross-cultural productions that explore the world of the past and the present.  Spica received the Exemplary Teaching Artist Award from New York University in 2014. She is a two-time recipient of the Jim Henson Foundation grant and is a 2015 Sandglass Theater New Vision Series Resident Artist. Spica was the featured artist in Shadow, Light… Hide & Seek Exhibit at WenShan Theater in Taipei in 2015 and “Heaven of Puppets Exhibit” at Taipei Puppet Museum in 2016.

Both the storytelling workshop and the shadow theater workshop encourages participants to create their original stories, make shadow puppets and perform together with their family members.

Hand in Hand will be presented in English on September 30, and October 7 and 13; and in Mandarin on October 1, 8 and 15. All presentations will be at 7:00 PM. To learn more about the program and updates on how to RSVP, please visit: http://flushingtownhall.org/hand-in-hand. Although it is highly encouraged that people attend all three events in the series, audiences can select any number of events (and content will still be understandable).

Global Music Month

Flushing Town Hall also is participating in the Global Music Month 2020 online festival for a month-long celebration of international music this season. The festival featuring concerts, presentations and panels, running from August 29th through October 1st. GMM 2020 combines 19 different U.S. and Canadian festivals and presenters’ events under one banner for a celebration of international music. Each online event is unique — with no repeat performers — offering a mix of livestreams and archived performances. globalmusicmonth.org

Fans of Flushing Town Hall can watch a replay of the highly popular 2018 Global Mashups concerts, each of which paired two, very different ensembles together on stage for a collaborative and spontaneous jam session. The 2018 mashups to be streamed weekly include: Egypt meets Haiti, featuring Zikrayat and Agoci Band; Mexico meets Guinea, featuring Banda de los Muertos and Mandingo Ambassadors; The Balkans meet El Barrio, featuring Raya Brass Band and again, Spanglish Fly; and Texas meets Peru, featuring Brian Clayton and The Green River Band and the Corina Bartra Afro Peruvian Band.

Flushing Town Hall will close the month on September 29 with a psychedelic, Korean folk music performance from Coreyah. Since their 2010 debut, Coreyah has pioneered a new style of Korean music that blends genres of contemporary ethnic and popular sounds while still maintaining the distinctive characteristics of traditional Korean instruments. Coreyah will perform LIVE music from their latest album “Clap & Applause,” showcasing their long-standing effort to infuse pop into traditional music through bold, youthful style, heartfelt lyrics, and a psychedelic sound. Learn more at http://www.flushingtownhall.org/coreyah.

For details on all Global Music Month events, visit http://www.flushingtownhall.org/global-music-month. And, learn more about the Global Mashup replays at http://www.flushingtownhall.org/global-mashups-2018-replay.

 Flushing Town Hall’s facilities are temporarily closed to the public in accordance with COVID-19 safety regulations. Flushing Town Hall’s latest statement pertaining to COVID-19 can be found here.

We’re Celebrating World Music Month in September

In honor of World Music Month this September 2020, Flushing Town Hall will present a jam-packed schedule of virtual programming as part of the Global Music Month 2020 online festival, joining with 19 different presenters for a month-long celebration of international music.

The festival featuring concerts, presentations and panels, running from August 29th through October 1st. GMM 2020 combines 19 different U.S. and Canadian festivals and presenters’ events under one banner for a celebration of international music. Each online event is unique — with no repeat performers — offering a mix of livestreams and archived performances. globalmusicmonth.org

Fans of Flushing Town Hall can look forward to a replay of its highly popular 2018 Global Mashups concerts, each of which paired two, very different ensembles together on stage for a collaborative and spontaneous jam session. The 2018 mashups to be streamed weekly will include: Egypt meets Haiti, featuring Zikrayat and Agoci Band; Mexico meets Guinea, featuring Banda de los Muertos and Mandingo Ambassadors; The Balkans meet El Barrio, featuring Raya Brass Band and again, Spanglish Fly; and Texas meets Peru, featuring Brian Clayton and The Green River Band and the Corina Bartra Afro Peruvian Band.

Though not part of World Music Month, Flushing Town Hall will start the party a bit early with a replay of the 2018 Global Mashup Latin Boogaloo meets Afrobeat, featuring groups Spanglish Fly and Chop and Quench.

On September 16, Flushing Town Hall will present a Latin American Rhythms Night, celebrating New York City’s vibrant Brazilian, Mexican, and Argentinian music scenes with a diverse lineup of artists performing LIVE and in pre-recorded numbers, including David Vieira, Sinuhe Padilla, and Pedro Giraudo. Hosted and curated by Martin Vejarano (director of La Cumbiamba NY, Cumbia River Band, and NYC Gaita Club), this evening will feature music from New York’s favorite Latinx musicians, as well as stories and interviews in “Spanglish.”

Flushing Town Hall will close the month on September 29 with a psychedelic, Korean folk music performance from Coreyah. Since their 2010 debut, Coreyah has pioneered a new style of Korean music that blends genres of contemporary ethnic and popular sounds while still maintaining the distinctive characteristics of traditional Korean instruments. Coreyah will perform LIVE music from their latest album “Clap & Applause,” showcasing their long-standing effort to infuse pop into traditional music through bold, youthful style, heartfelt lyrics, and a psychedelic sound.

“As a cultural institution whose mission is to bring people together by presenting global arts for a global community, we couldn’t be more thrilled to be a part of this unique and diverse consortium and to participate in the Global Music Month 2020 online festival,” says Flushing Town Hall’s Executive & Artistic Director Ellen Kodadek. “The fact of it being virtual means audiences throughout the country and around the world can enjoy our content and not just those in New York, where our venue is located. We are especially proud to present this programming free of charge.”

Learn more at: http://www.flushingtownhall.org/global-music-month

 

TUESDAY AUGUST 25 @ 7:00 PM

2018 Global Mashup #1: Latin Boogaloo meets Afrobeat

Featuring Spanglish Fly, New York City’s only band dedicated to reviving and renewing Latin Boogaloo’s soul and R&B mix, and Chop and Quench, comprised of members of the cast and band of FELA! The Musical

 

TUESDAY SEPTEMBER 1 @ 7:00 PM

2018 Global Mashup #2: Egypt meets Haiti

With Zikrayat playing a wide repertory of Egyptian music, ranging from belly dance numbers to virtuosic improvisations, and the Agoci Band combinging hip hop, roots, and calypso flavors with Haitian compas

 

TUESDAY SEPTEMBER 8 @ 7:00 PM

2018 Global Mashup #3: Mexico meets Guinea

Featuring Banda de los Muertos playing the boisterous Mexican brass/contemporary music known as “banda,” and Mandingo Ambassadors led by guitarist Mamady “Djelike” Kouyaté, a veteran of the golden age of Guinean dance bands

 

TUESDAY SEPTEMBER 15 @ 7:00 PM

2018 Global Mashup #4: The Balkans meet El Barrio

Raya Brass Band thrills with intense, soul-shaking Balkan wedding music and Spanglish Fly returns with irresistible grooves that play 60’s, Latin boogaloo-inspired soul

 

WEDNESDAY SEPTEMBER 16 @ 7:00PM

Latin American Rhythms Night

A celebration of NYC’s vibrant Brazilian, Mexican, and Argentinian music scene featuring live and pre-recorded performances, stories, and interviews with Martin Vejarano, David Vieira, Sinuhe Padilla, and Pedro Giraudo.

 

TUESDAY SEPTEMBER 22 @ 7:00 PM

2018 Global Mashup #5: Texas meets Peru

Featuring Brian Clayton and The Green River Band, comprised of six of the finest country musicians, and Corina Bartra Afro Peruvian Band palying infectious Afro-Peruvian music

 

TUESDAY SEPTEMBER 29 @ 7:00 PM

Coreyah: Psychedelic Korean Folk

Coreyah performing music from their latest album ‘Clap & Applause,” showcasing their long-standing effort to infuse pop into traditional music through bold and youthful style, heartfelt lyrics, and a psychedelic sound

 

Flushing Town Hall’s facilities are temporarily closed to the public in accordance with COVID-19 safety regulations. Flushing Town Hall’s latest statement pertaining to COVID-19 can be found here.

Call and Response: Art at Flushing Town Hall

Gabrielle M. Hamilton, the Director of Education & Public Programs at Flushing Town Hall, recently discussed the venue’s art initiatives – including the new “Call and Response: Grief, Resiliency and Hope” exhibition launched this summer on the fence outside of Flushing Town Hall – with writer Meagan Meehan. You can read the full interview here, and we’ve included some portions below.

MM: How did you come up with the idea for the outdoor art exhibition and how has it been received?

GMH: We were wondering “what can FTH do for our community?” The trauma and grief of the moment reminded me so much of the feeling of loss and hopelessness we all felt on 9/11; and the anxiety and panic we felt during Superstorm Sandy. We needed something to bring the community together even during quarantine — in much the same way that people left flowers, messages, and banners at sites around the city during those times. Flushing Town Hall has the 50-foot fence and that immediately seems to me like the perfect “gallery” to express our feelings and process our trauma. Our community of FTH Teaching Artists were the first to create artwork for the exhibition and their work is stunning. Slowly the word has gotten out and I’m so pleased to say that we currently have 20 pieces from amateur and professional artists hanging now. If artists cannot hang their work themselves, they can scan or photograph it, and send it to us and we’ll print it out, laminate it and hang it for them. In mid-August, we gave away over 67 art kits to families, and we hope they will create artwork for the exhibition too.

MM: How many pieces are in the show (aka on the fence) so far and do you have any favorites? If so, which ones and why?

GMH: We have 20 to-date, and it would be hard to pick a favorite. Nearly all of the artists submitted a statement and those statements express some personal experiences of what motivated the artist and it makes each piece that more profound. By the way, we hung the statements too. Two pieces to look for are: Stephanie Lee’s “We’ll Get Through This Together” featuring a princely mouse (since it is the “Year of the Rat”) wearing a mask, painted in the Korean minhwa style and transferred to vinyl; and Tina Seligman’s “Music Mandala” where she has photographed instruments to create a symbol of peace and hope, and the joy of music usually heard at FTH.

MM: How do the arts programs usually work at Flushing Town Hall and are you currently moving any of them to virtual platforms?

GMH: Every FTH program, with theexception of the outdoor exhibition, is virtual these days following NY State’s opening guidelines for theaters, until we receive the go-ahead to re-open FTH

You can read the full interview here!

Celebrating Colombian Music at a Latin American Rhythms Night on August 19

On Wednesday, August 19 at 7:00 PM, Flushing Town Hall will celebrate New York City’s vibrant Colombian music scene with a stellar cast of artists who will reunite for an evening of music and stories, remembering Diego Obregon, a master Colombian musician and marimba maker who passed away unexpectedly last month.

Hosted and curated by Martin Vejarano of La Cumbiamba NY, NYC Gaita Club, and Cumbia River Band, the event will also feature: Ronald Polo, Moris Cañate, and Johanna Castaneda of Grupo Rebolú; Pablo Major of Folklore Urbano and Encuentro NYC on piano, Sebastián Cruz on guitar; the NYC Gaita Club featuring Christian Rodriguez, Camilo Martinez, and Cristian Quimbay; and will include remembrances shared by Freddy Castiblanco of Terraza 7.

Audiences who tune in to the Facebook livestream will be able to hear Obregon’s very own marimba, a unique percussive instrument from the Afro-Colombian community, played by Harold Gutierrez – a pianist, composer, and educator.

Obregon was an Afro-Colombian immigrant artist of incredible talent and generous spirit. He helped establish the Colombian music scene in New York City, fronting his own band Grupo Chonta (so named for the wood he used to make his marimbas) and mentoring the next generation of musicians. He helped introduce and elevate Colombia’s rich, Pacific coast music to New York audiences, as well collaborated and sat-in with artists from the around the world, all the while working a non-music job in a local graveyard to support his family.

Latin American Rhythms Night will stream live on Facebook at no charge to viewers. Those wishing to support Flushing Town Hall while the venue remains temporarily closed for COVID safety measures may donate to the Step Up for Flushing Town Hall campaign. Those wishing to support Obregon’s family may donate to the GoFundMe campaign created by his colleague.

Express Yourself Through Art Outside Flushing Town Hall

What are you feeling in 2020? Hope? Pain? Worry? Fear? Gratitude?

Flushing Town Hall would like you to express those feelings and desires through art – and display them for the world to see.

This month, the historic venue unveiled Call and Response: Grief, Resiliency and Hope, an outdoor, public-driven exhibition where New Yorkers can showcase their feelings on the venue’s fence at 137-35 Northern Boulevard.

All are welcome— amateur and professional artists alike, and contributors of all ages. And since the exhibition began, several have already hung their artwork up themselves – and you can, too. There already are about a half dozen pieces of art and poetry adorning the fence.

“I originally painted this at the beginning of the year 2020 to celebrate the year of the white rat,” says Stephanie Lee about her artwork. “In my work, I reinterpret the style of traditional Korean Folk Art, Minwha, which contains good wishes and virtues to others. Also, in Asia, there is a tradition to build a statue of 12 zodiac animals to protect the tomb as guardians. So, I painted the white rat with a diamond in a posture of moving forward, hoping to guard people all year-round with a strong and prosperous life.”

She adds, “Then COVID-19 hit us hard this year, so I tried to bring awareness of how important it is to wear a mask to prevent the spreading of the virus. It has nothing to do with politics, and we really can’t fight the virus alone. I truly hope we can get through this together. ”

Artwork can honor those we have lost during the pandemic to the disease, or honor those we have lost as a result of racial or social injustice. Artists can choose to thank healthcare providers for their efforts to heal, or explore racial injustice, express anxiety or fears, illustrate hope for a brighter future, or anything else they are feeling.  As art helps us process our feelings, we will be building our community’s mental resiliency.

Says Flushing Town Hall’s Director of Education and Public Programs Gabrielle M. Hamilton, “We need to acknowledge the trauma of this moment which is profoundly tied our nation’s history and attempt to address our collective pain through artistic expression. This exhibition will be an ongoing artistic testament to our community’s mental resiliency in times of crises.”

Check out a few of the recent contributions below:

Artist: Steve Palermo
Artist: Audrey Dove

 

Poem by Steven T. Licardi / Artwork by Stella McKeown

 

Artwork by Xun Ye

 

Artwork by Xun Ye

If you wish to participate, here are some guidelines:

  • Work can be up to 27”x 39” inches on paper, fabric or ribbon.
  • After you complete your work, write your name on your piece (if you like), punch a hole in the artwork at the top, and tie a string through it.
  • If your artwork is very big, you can tape it to the fence with masking tape
  • Artwork will be exposed to the elements and will not be protected from the weather.
  • Artwork will not be returned.
  • Artwork may be photographed and shared online through a virtual exhibition, unless specifically noted by the artists on the back of the artwork.
  • Flushing Town Hall reserves the right to remove any artwork that uses hate speech, profanity or obscenity, or depicts violence, sexual acts or unlawful or illegal behavior.

The exhibition will be up all summer long. And, if you do not want to travel to Flushing, you can still participate by emailing your work to education@flushingtownhall.org. And staff will print it, laminate it, and they’ll hang it, too, like Sio Man Lam, our Education and Public Programs Coordinator, did this week.

 

Our Summer Lineup Will Keep Audiences Dancing, Clapping, and Learning – at Home!

Flushing Town Hall has unveiled an all-new lineup of virtual programming for audiences to enjoy from the safety of home this July and August. All you need is a good internet connection a nd a comfy couch (or backyard or front stoop)!

“We love our artists and audiences and can’t wait to welcome everyone back, but until our doors open again, we are proud to continue providing online programs that educate and entertain,” says Executive & Artistic Director Ellen Kodadek. “Our global community has experienced great hardship this year. As a service to the public, we are offering the majority of our virtual content free of charge. The arts uplift our spirits in dark times and remind us that we are not alone. Join us online and be part of our global community!”

Upcoming, free programs through FTH at Home! will include Facebook watch parties featuring Flushing Town Hall’s wildly popular 2018 Global Mashups, streaming weekly on Tuesday evenings starting July 28. World music fans can tune in for a diverse lineup of incredible bands together on stage in unusual combinations, like Egypt meets Haiti and The Balkans meet El Barrio.

On July 18 and 19, audiences can tune in to Concert for Cuba, for which Flushing Town Hall is a co-presenter and social media partner hosting a Facebook watch party. The concert features Orquesta Aragón, Susana Baca, Jane Bunnett and Danae Olano, Los Van Van, and Arturo O’Farrill, among many other great performers, as well as notable speakers, including Michael Moore, Danny Glover, and Congresswoman Barbara Lee.

On August 6 and August 13, in collaboration with Queens Council on the Arts’ Artist Commissioning Program, Flushing Town Hall will present two virtual showcases of works in progress. The first is Jaime Sunwoo’s “Specially Processed American Me,” featuring SPAM, the famous canned meat, in a surreal performance that explores the artist’s Asian American upbringing and her family’s experience of the Korean War. The second work in progress will be Marcus Yi’s “Lucky 88 The Food Court Musical,” inspired by the food courts of Flushing. Both completed works will premier this fall as part of FTH at Home!. Both works, selected by a group of art commissioners who are community members of Flushing, tell untold stories that highlight underrepresented protagonists.

Fans of Flushing Town Hall’s monthly Louis Armstrong Legacy Jazz Jam can look forward to its return on August 12. Up to 20 musicians may register to play (or sing!) in the virtual jam session held over Zoom, and all members of the public may watch in the audience. For participants selecting their tunes, the theme for August’s jam will be “unity.”

Also this summer, FTH Teaching Artists will participate in the #ArtsAreEssential social media campaign, a citywide effort to advocate for the arts, and for artists, amidst the pandemic.

“The arts sector is vital to our city’s mental, physical, and economic recovery,” says Gabrielle M. Hamilton, Director of Education and Public Programs, “and arts educators are uniquely equipped to help our children process their trauma, build resiliency, and rekindle their innate joy and curiosity. Flushing Town Hall’s master teaching artists from around the world support students with cross-cultural programming that helps unify our community.”

Beginning this month and continuing through September, Flushing Town Hall will share across its social channels a series of one-minute #ArtsAreEssential videos in English, Mandarin, Korean, and Spanish. In these videos, FTH Teaching Artists explore why “arts are essential” to them with engaging music, dance, visual arts, theater and puppetry activities. Each video is supported with complementary activities and worksheets to engage learners of all ages.

For those looking for more formal instruction, Flushing Town Hall is excited to offer its first-ever Virtual World Dance Camp, the only program for which it is charging a fee. Participants can register for introductory classes in traditional Indian dance, Mexican dance, Chinese dance, and American jazz dance, each offering daily, hour-long sessions for the span of one week, with separate groups for Children (age 12 and under), and Teens & Adults. Classes begin July 13 and run through August 7 and participants can register for however many they choose.

In addition to its virtual programming, Flushing Town Hall has launched a physical art exhibition, Call & Response: Grief, Resiliency and Hope, to showcase artwork submissions from the public along its Northern Boulevard fence outside the venue. New Yorkers are invited to create artworks for hanging that reflect this defining moment in time and that give expression to their experiences of the COVID19 pandemic, racial injustice, and the Black Lives Matter movement. Amateur artists and professionals are invited to hang their artwork directly onto the fence or submit images of their art by email. For specifications and instructions, visit: http://www.flushingtownhall.org/call-and-response.

Finally, Flushing Town Hall will continue to host its weekly Zoom Artist Hang for Queens artists of all disciplines on Fridays at 5:00 PM.

Summer 2020 Schedule for Calendars: 

CURRENT EXHIBITION

Call and Response: Grief, Resiliency, and Hope

http://www.flushingtownhall.org/call-and-response

 

MONDAY JULY 13 – FRIDAY AUGUST 7

Virtual World Dance Camp

http://www.flushingtownhall.org/virtual-world-dance-camp

 

SATURDAY JULY 18 & SUNDAY JULY 19 @ 8:00 PM

Concert for Cuba

http://www.flushingtownhall.org/fth-at-home-watch-party

 

TUESDAYS (JULY 28, AUGUST 4, 11, 18, 24) @ 7:00 PM

Global Mashups

http://www.flushingtownhall.org/fth-at-home-watch-party

 

THURSDAY AUGUST 6 @ 7:00 PM

ACP Live Presents: Jaime Sunwoo

http://www.flushingtownhall.org/acp-live

 

THURSDAY AUGUST 13 @ 7:00 PM

ACP Live Presents: Marcus Yi

http://www.flushingtownhall.org/acp-live

 

WEDNESDAY AUGUST 12 @ 7:00 PM

Louis Armstrong Legacy Virtual Jazz Jam

http://www.flushingtownhall.org/virtual-jazz-jam

 

FRIDAYS @ 5:00 PM

Zoom Hang for Queens artists

URL: https://zoom.us/j/283009195

Meeting ID: 283 009 195

 

Flushing Town Hall’s facilities are temporarily closed to the public in accordance with COVID-19 safety regulations. Flushing Town Hall’s latest statement pertaining to COVID-19 can be found here.

It’s safe to dance all summer – at our Virtual World Dance Camp!

Flushing Town Hall Education, long-beloved by school partners and families in the community, will run a Virtual World Dance Camp this summer that is open to all (no prior dance experience needed!).

With both a Kids group (ages 13 and under) and a Teens & Adults group, participants of all ages are invited to experience the artistic expression, physical exercise, and joyful learning that engaging in world dance provides.

Recognizing that New Yorkers spent months stuck indoors as the city weathered the worst of the coronavirus pandemic, Flushing Town Hall Education is excited to get everyone moving together again.

“Dance provides the social, emotional, and physical release we need right now,” says Gabrielle Hamilton, Director of Education & Public Programs. “What’s more, during these troubling times, our Virtual World Dance Camp will allow us to explore and learn more about our diverse community and to deepen our appreciation for one another’s traditions.” 

Its masterful Teaching Artists will lead hour-long, introductory classes by Zoom in Jazz, Indian, Mexican, and Chinese dance styles. Participants can learn more and register here for as many class offerings as they choose: http://www.flushingtownhall.org/virtual-world-dance-camp

Class Schedule:

Week 1: Jazz Dance with Angela Rostick

Kids Group  |  July 13-17, 2020 at 11am-12pm EST  |  $60 / $50 for member

Easy to follow, one hour-long pop style Jazz, with a hip/hop flare. Includes a warm-up, freestyle session and dance moves leading up to a final performance. The music is upbeat for an energetic experience.

Teens & Adults Group  |  July 13-17, 2020 at 5pm-6pm EST  |  $60 / $50 for member

Easy to follow, one hour-long Broadway Style Jazz. Includes a warm-up, across the floor, and basic beginner jazz dance steps to form a dance combination. Let the music move you! You will feel as though you are on Broadway!

Week 2: Traditional Indian Dance with Abha Roy

Kids Group  |  July 20-24, 2020 at 11am-12pm EST  |  $60 / $50 for member

Starting with a fun & calm breathing exercise, students will then be introduced to one particular state (region) of India through its dance movements, rhythms, and folk songs. This series will conclude with a final performance, all students are encouraged to wear their DIY folk wardrobe.

Teens & Adults Group  |  July 20-24, 2020 at 5pm-6pm EST  |  $60 / $50 for member

Indian dances have a strong storytelling and expressive aspect. Each session starts with yoga and breathing exercises for teens and adults, followed by learning one particular Indian folk or Kathak dance, and concludes with a revision and sharing session.

Week 3: Traditional Mexican Dance with Alberto Lopez

Kids Group  |  July 27-31, 2020 at 11am-12pm EST  |  $60 / $50 for member

Let’s learn together the dances from Chihuahua, Mexico, which includes zapateados, skirts and the very traditional gritos (calls)! Students will also be introduced to related Spanish vocabulary, folk terms and dance traditions.

Teens & Adults Group  |  July 27-31, 2020 at 5pm-6pm EST  |  $60 / $50 for member

This dance series will introduce you to the Mexican Polka, a traditional dance with joyful music from Chihuahua and a full body workout! As the largest state of Mexico, Chihuahua is located in Northwestern Mexico and is bordered by the states of Sonora to the west, Sinaloa to the southwest, Durango to the south, and Coahuila to the east. It shares an extensive border with the U.S. adjacent to the U.S. states of New Mexico and Texas.

Week 4: Traditional Chinese Dance with Ling Tang

Kids Group  |  August 3-7, 2020 at 11am-12pm EST  |  $60 / $50 for member

How can we use dance movements to discover culture? Each session begins with fun warm-up exercises, followed by learning a mini repertoire such as Kung-Fu, Inner-Mongolian dance, and ribbon dances with DIY props. Kids will also learn Chinese words and songs, as well as creative movements to explore space, time, energy and body parts.

Teens & Adults Group  |  August 3-7, 2020 at 5pm-6pm EST  |  $60 / $50 for member

This virtual workshop series introduces teens and adults to the historic and cultural development of Chinese dance, from ancient classical court dance to various ethnic/folk dances. Each session begins with warm-up exercises inspired by Tai-Chi and classical body rhymes, followed by learning excerpts of Chinese traditional opera, Inner-Mongolian, Uighur and ribbons with DIY props, as well as movement improvisation to explore your own dance style.

About Flushing Town Hall

Flushing Town Hall (FTH), a Smithsonian affiliate, presents multi-disciplinary global arts that engage and educate the global communities of Queens and New York City, in order to foster mutual appreciation.  As advocates of arts equity since 1979, we support local, immigrant, national, and international artists, developing partnerships and collaborations that enhance our efforts.  As a member of New York City’s Cultural Institutions Group (CIG), we serve to restore, manage and program the historic 1862 landmark on behalf of the City of New York. FTH celebrates the history of Queens as the home of Jazz, by presenting the finest in Jazz performance.  We are committed to arts education and hands-on learning, for the arts-curious, arts enthusiasts, and professional artists.  We serve one of the most diverse communities in the world and strive to uphold the legacy of inclusiveness that has defined our community since the Flushing Remonstrance of 1657.

Flushing Town Hall’s facilities are temporarily closed to the public in accordance with COVID-19 safety regulations. The latest information on Flushing Town Hall  pertaining to COVID-19 can be found here.

For more information, please visit our website at

www.flushingtownhall.org, or call us at

(718) 463-7700 x222

We are in the heart of Queens New York at

137-35 Northern Blvd. Flushing, NY 11354