Greetings! November, GBE’s Black Business Month, opens with the announcement that Berry Gordy, the legendary founder of Motown Records who received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame on Oct. 24, 1996, and Grammy winner Smokey Robinson will be honored with the Grammy Museum’s first-ever Architects of Sound Award. The recognition is for their unparalleled contributions to the Motown genre.
The inaugural Grammy Museum benefit gala dinner and concert will be hold on Monday, Nov. 11 at Club Nokia in Los Angeles. Proceeds will go toward the museum, which is dedicated to engaging both children and adults in the power of music through dynamic exhibits, educational programs, live performances and more. The host for the historic first-time event will be music industry veteran and television personality Randy Jackson.
“Motown: The Musical,” with book by Berry Gordy Jr. and featuring 2013 Tony nominee Valisia LeKae as Diana Ross, Tony nominee Charl Brown as Smokey Robinson and Brandon Dixon as Berry Gordy, is now playing at the Lunt-Fontanne Theatre, 205 W. 46th St. (between Eighth Avenue and Broadway). For tickets, visit ticketmaster.com or motownthemusical.com.
In “A Time to Kill,” Rupert Holmes revisits John Grisham’s 1989 legal story on race and justice, focusing on an African-American defendant (John Douglas Thompson) threatened with capital punishment for the murder of white rapists. He is defended by a white lawyer (Sebastian Arcelus). It is playing now through Dec. 31 at the John Golden Theatre, 252 W. 45th St., between Seventh and Eighth avenues. For tickets and information, call 212-239-6200 or visit atimetokillonbroadway.com.
“Platanos, Collard Greens & Callaloo”—that’s right, “callaloo!” This hilarious remix of the successful franchise brings the West Indian brethren in. It’s now playing at the Baruch Performing Arts Center, 55 Lexington Ave. (enter on 25th Street between Lexington and Third Avenue). For more information, call Theatermania at 212-352-3101, visit theatermania.com or visit plantanosandcollardgreens.com.
“Lady Day: The Billie Holiday Musical,” featuring Dee Dee Bridgewater and written and directed by Stephen Stahl, is now playing at the Little Shubert Theatre, 422 W. 42nd St., between Ninth and 10th avenues. For tickets, call 212-239-6200, visit telecharge.com or visit ladydaythemusical.com.
Woodie King Jr.’s New Federal Theatre presents the revival of the Ed Bullins classic “In the Wine Time” Thursdays through Saturdays at 7:30 p.m. and Saturdays and Sundays at 2 p.m. at the Castillo Theatre, 543 W. 42nd St. For more information, call 212-941-5800 or visit newfederaltheatre.com.
On Oct. 31, the Jimmy Heath Big Band performs live at the Blue Note, 131 W. Third St. Sets at 8 p.m. and 10:30 p.m. For more information, visit bluenotejazz.com.
The Temptations and the Four Tops perform at the New Jersey Performing Arts Center on Saturday, Nov. 2 at 8 p.m.; Kevin Maynor and Trilogy: An Opera Company present “Paul Robeson Remembered” on Sunday, Nov. 3; and NJPAC celebrates Amiri Baraka and the 50th anniversary of his book “Blues People: Negro Music in White America” on Tuesday, Nov. 5. NJPAC is located at 1 Center St., Newark, N.J. For more information, call 888-466-5722 or visit njpac.org.
“The African Americans: Many Rivers to Cross,” a six-part documentary series by Henry Louis Gates Jr., is airing Tuesdays, now through Nov. 26 at 8 p.m. ET/PT. It details the African-American saga from the origins of slavery on the African continent and the arrival of the first Black conquistador, Juan Garrido, in Florida in 1513, through five centuries of historic events right up to today—with President Barack Obama serving his second term in the White House. Check your local PBS TV stations, WNET and WLIW.
Look for an exclusive mid-November New York City pre-screening of “Mandela: A Long Walk to Freedom,” an epic film based on former South African President Nelson Mandela’s autobiography of the same name. Starring actor Idris Elba as Mandela, this inspirational film chronicles Mandela’s humble early life in rural South Africa to his becoming the country’s first democratically elected president. For more information, visit sharedinterest.org.
“12 Years a Slave” tells the story of Solomon Northrup, a free Black man from upstate New York who is abducted and sold into slavery. Check your local theaters for listings.
The Pan African Film Festival (PAFF) has announced the final call for submissions. Late submissions will be accepted until Nov. 16. Official selection announcements will be made beginning Dec. 16. The 22nd annual PAFF will be held on Feb. 6-17, 2014, in Los Angeles. For festival information, submission procedures, fees and registration, call 310-337-4737 or visit www.paff.org.
The Pre-Black Solidarity Day celebration will take place on Sunday, Nov. 3. Speakers will include Michael Hooper, Assemblywoman Inez Barron, Bob Law and Salim Adofo. There will be cultural presentations, martial arts and performances by Capoeira Angola, Harlem Poet Laureate Geoge Edward Tait, the Afrikan Community Drummers, children of the International Sankofa Academy, Empress Idama and Brother Wakili on Sunday, Nov. 3 at 2 p.m. at the Fort Greene Senior Citizens Center, 966 Fulton St., Brooklyn. The Afrikan Vendors Market opens at 2 p.m. Admission is free. For information, contact Michael Hooper at 718-773-0246.
Black Solidarity Day in Harlem will take place on Monday, Nov. 4 at 6 p.m. at the State Office Building at 163 W. 125th St. (just east of Adam Clayton Powell Jr. Boulevard and Seventh Avenue). Special guests will include Amadi Ajamu,
John Watusi Branch, Jah Man, attorney Roger Wareham, George Edward Tait and yours truly, Imhotep Gary Byrd, the radio griot. For more information, call 718-398-1766.
Hear Imhotep Gary Byrd on 107.5 WBLS-FM daily with “Imhotep’s On-Air Guide to Black Events” and “Express Yourself,” Sunday evenings from 7 to 9 p.m., and on WLIB-AM with “The GBE Mind Flight,” Sunday evenings from 9 p.m. to midnight. The full show can be heard on HD radio at WBLS-HD2. IGB is also heard on WBAI-FM 99.5 with Radio GBE: The “Global Black Experience” and “Global Beat Experience,” Saturdays from 5 to 7 p.m. We are archived online with both shows at www.wbai.org. To contact us for bookings or to reach us about your event, email email@example.com, find Imhotep Gary Byrd on Facebook or follow us on Twitter @GBELIFE or call 212-592-3279.