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Imhotep's Guide to Black Events 8/4

8/11/2011, 12:16 p.m.

Greetings! This has been a banner week for Black theater and several New York City Black theater companies are showcasing brilliant performances at this year's National Black Theatre Festival (NBTF), running through this weekend in Winston-Salem, N.C. The NBTF is the only national Black theater festival in the country, offering six consecutive days of professional theater, film, poetry, workshops, seminars and shopping. Visit them online at www.nbtf.org.

THEATER

"Mama, I Want to Sing: The Next Generation," by Vy Higginsen, with original music by Wesley Naylor, directed by Ken Wydro. Now playing at the Dempsey Theater, 127 W. 127th St. between Adam Clayton Powell Jr. and Malcolm X boulevards. For more information and tickets, visit www.mamafoundation.org.

"Baby it's You" follows the creation and rise of the independent record company that gave us the popular girl group the Shirelles, the Isley Brothers, Dionne Warwick, Chuck Jackson and more. At the Broadhurst Theatre, 235 W. 44th St. For more information, visit www.babyitsyouonbroadway.com.

"The Devil's Music: The Life and Blues of Bessie Smith." Now running on Broadway at St. Luke's Theater, 308 W. 46th St. For tickets, call (212) 239-6200 or visit www.stlukestheatre.com.

Whoopi Goldberg's "Sister Act," the stage musical based on the 1992 movie of the same name, features funky, soulful songs by Alan Menken and Glenn Slater and presents the dynamic debut of Patina Miller. At the Broadway Theatre, 1681 Broadway. For more information, visit www.sisteractbroadway.com.

FILM & ART

"Malcolm X: A Search for Truth" and "Romare Bearden: The Soul of Blackness-A Centennial Tribute" are on view now through Sat., Jan. 7 at the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture, 515 Malcolm X. Blvd.

MUSIC

Ailey II performs Alvin Ailey's signature work, "Revelations," one of the great masterpieces of American dance, at the Prospect Park bandshell in Brooklyn, Sat., Aug. 5 at 8 p.m. Free. For more information, visit www.bricartsmedia.org.

Janet Jackson is bringing her "Number Ones World Tour," a fan-based show, to the PNC Bank Arts Center in Holmdel, N.J., Sat., Aug. 6 at 9 p.m. Holmdel Township, Exit 116 off the Garden State Parkway. For more information, visit www.pncbankarts.centerholmdel.com

The Martin Luther King Jr. free concert series presents the "Men Of Soul": Jeffrey Osbourne, Peabo Bryson and Freddie Jackson. Mon., Aug. 8 at 7:30 p.m. at Wingate Field on Brooklyn Avenue between Rutland Road and Winthrop Street in Crown Heights, Brooklyn. Free. For more information, visit www.brooklynconcerts.com.

Coney Island's Seaside Concerts Under the Stars series presents "The Queen of Soul," Aretha Franklin, in a free concert Thurs., Aug. 4 at 7 p.m. in a new venue near the Brooklyn Cyclones' MCU Stadium at West 21st Street and Surf Avenue. The public is encouraged to bring their own chairs. A limited number of $5 rental chairs in a specially designated area are available on a first-come, first-served basis. No cameras, no audio or video recording, no alcohol, no pets, no bottles, no smoking. All persons and packages are subject to search prior to entry. For directions, visit www.mta.info or call (718) 330-1234. For other information, call the concert hotline, (718) 222-0600.