Black Stars of the Great White Way Concert, With Ben Vereen, Norm Lewis, André De Shields and More, Held Feb. 17
By Michael Gioia
Tony Award winner Ben Vereen and Tony nominee Norm Lewis (Porgy & Bess) are among the artists taking part in Black Stars of the Great White Way, celebrating Black History Month, Feb. 17 at the Queensborough Performing Arts Center.
Joining Vereen and Lewis at the 3 PM event are Tony nominees Keith David (Jelly's Last Jam, Hot Feet), André De Shields (The Full Monty, Play On!) and Larry Marshall (The Color Purple) as well as Tony-nominated choreographer Ted L. Levy (Jelly's Last Jam).
There will be a salute from Bubbling Brown Sugar trumpeter Longineu Parsons to Louis Armstrong and a special guest performance by Broadway's Bring In The Noise, Bring In The Funk tapper Omar A. Edwards.
Broadway choral director-arranger Chapman Roberts (Bubbling Brown Sugar, Eubie!, Blues in the Night, Five Guys Named Moe), who co-hosts the event alongside Susan Agin, created Black Stars of the Great White Way, which features Broadway showstoppers that salute a parade of great entertainers in history, including Louis Jordan, Eubie Blake, Duke Ellington, Louis Armstrong, Cab Calloway, Fats Waller, Sammy Davis Jr. and Nat King Cole.
Pianist Frank Owens is joined on the bandstand by bassist Clyde Bullard, South African drummer Sipho Kunene, guitarist Keith Robinson, Ray Naccari, Tom Zablinger and the York College Big Band. Additionally, 14-year-old piano prodigy Julius Rodriguez is introduced.
Queensborough Performing Arts Center is located at Queensborough Community College at 222-05 56th Avenue in Bayside. For more information, visit QCC.Cuny.edu/QPac.
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