Shabutaso Inc. is a nonprofit 501(c)(3) connecting and reconnecting to traditional African culture and values. The St. Joseph’s Historic Foundation is committed to the Hayti Heritage Center, the former St. Joseph’s AME Church, a National Historic Landmark, as a cultural and economic anchor to the greater Durham community. St. Joseph’s Historic Foundation, Inc. is a nonprofit, charitable organization under Section 501(c)(3) of the U.S. Internal Revenue Code.
Hayti Heritage Film Festival 2019 Call for Entries
Durham, NC, November 19, 2018 – Submissions are currently open for the Hayti Heritage Film Festival. The 25th Annual African American Film Festival is presented by the Hayti Heritage Cultural Center through St. Joseph’s Historic Foundation, is one of the nation’s longest-running Black film festivals. The 2019 festival takes place February 14-16, at the St. Joseph’s Historic Foundation/Hayti Heritage Center at 804 Old Fayetteville Rd in Durham, NC. Interested filmmakers should submit to: https://filmfreeway.com/HaytiHeritageFilmFest through Friday, December 7.
For the second consecutive year filmmaker Lana Garland will serve as festival director and curator. Garland is the Executive Producer of production company Insibah Media, and a Fulbright educator in film. “We are creating a robust program that includes some of the most innovative Black films of the past few years, films from the local community, and an opening night that celebrates the proud history of Black Durham through film and photographs,“ shares Garland.
“We believe in the power of images and image-makers to transform communities by curating artistic, informative, and innovative films by African American filmmakers, and by providing a platform for exhibition for these artists who oftentimes struggle to get film distribution.” Say Hayti Center Director, Angela Lee.
The festival opens on Thursday, February 14th with a screening of the documentary, Mr. Soul! All-access passes go on sale, December 15th.
About Hayti Heritage Center and Hayti Heritage Film Festival: Hayti, under the guidance of the St. Joseph’s Historic Foundation, presents The Hayti Heritage Film Festival as a signature event each year to keep Black film alive. New and veteran artists screen films before a diverse crowd of film enthusiasts while vendors provide great food, beverages, arts and crafts. The Center preserves and advances the heritage and culture of the historic Hayti community in Durham, NC and the African American experience through programs that benefit the broader community locally, nationally and globally.
Hayti Heritage Center AnnouncesNewDate for Legendary Blues Festival and NewPartnership
Durham, NC (August 23rd, 2018) – The Bull Durham Blues Festival has a new look! The Hayti Heritage Center presents Blues and Roots, a two-day festival honoring the legacy of African American contributions to the Blues and Roots music genres with iconic headliners The B.B. King Blues Band with Tito Jackson.
This year’s event has been rescheduled from September to Friday and Saturday, October 5th and 6th, at the historic Hayti Heritage Center. “There is no better way to honor Hayti’s rich past, vibrant present and bright future than by presenting music rooted in the African American experience in a venue that remains an African American cultural hub for the City,” states Hayti Executive Director Angela Lee. “We are going to have a great weekend!”
The celebration continues on Saturday from 11:00 am until 6:00 pm on Fayetteville Street with a unique partnership with Phoenix Fest, which celebrates 17 years as the funkiest FREE street music festival in the historic Hayti community.
Blues and Roots excellence continues Saturday evening at 7:00 pm with Lenora Helmand producer Lana Garland performing their original multi-media production Blues Women and concludes with the iconic B.B. King Blues Band with guitarist, songwriter, and vocalist Tito Jackson of the famed Jackson family. Blues and Roots will provide an unforgettable experience celebrating Hayti’s return to the blues.
Since 1891 the historic brick structure located at the corner of Fayetteville and Lakewood Streets has been a cultural hub for Durham’s African American community. An anchor of “Black Wall Street,” the Center continues offering quality visual and performing arts program along with facility rentals and tours year round. From the acoustically near-flawless Performance Hall to the Lyda Moore Merrick Gallery to the Chuck Davis Dance Emporium, Hayti offers a vibrant space for artists, arts advocates, individuals, groups and organizations, and is committed to practices of equity and inclusion. We love this place!
Phoenix Fest is back on Saturday October 6, 2018 for its 17th year as Durham NC’s funkiest street music festival that celebrates the cultural legacy of Durham NC’s historic Hayti community and delivers a fun-filled day of family-friendly entertainment for thousands on historic Fayetteville Street free of charge. After the 9am opening parade with high-stepping bands, businesses and community groups, Fayetteville Street will be transformed into a bustling bazaar with eye-teasing vendor displays and lip-smacking food followed by all-day music on Center Stage from 11 am until 6 pm. Bring the family and stay all day, and swing by Hayti’s Blues and Roots Festival featuring Lenora Helmand producerLana Garland performing their original multi-media production Blues Women and concludes with the iconicB.B. King Blues Bandwith guitarist, songwriter, and vocalistTito Jackson of the famed Jackson family at 7pm
For Immediate Release
804 Old Fayetteville Street
Durham, NC 27701
COME BACK TO THE BLUES
Hayti Heritage Center Announces Blues and Roots Celebration: A New Look for the Legendary Blues Festival
Durham, NC (July 16th, 2018) – The Bull Durham Blues Festival has a new look! The Hayti Heritage Center presents its “Blues and Roots Celebration,” a two-day festival honoring the legacy of African American contributions to the Blues and Roots music genres.
The event takes place Friday and Saturday, September 7th and 8th, at the historic Hayti Heritage Center. “We understand the long-standing tradition of the Bull Durham Blues Festival being an outdoor experience. However, there is no better way to honor Hayti’s rich past, vibrant present and bright future than by presenting music rooted in the African American experience in a venue that remains an African American cultural hub for the City,” states Hayti Executive Director Angela Lee.
Friday’s celebration kicks off with a juke joint themed reception followed by performances from Baron Tymas and his band “Hit Ya Right Here” and Justin Robinson of the Carolina Chocolate Drops.
Blues and Roots excellence continues on Saturday with Lenora Helm performing her original production Blues Woman and concludes with the iconic B.B. King Blues Band with guitarist, songwriter, and vocalist Tito Jackson of the famed Jackson family. Blues and Roots will provide an unforgettable experience celebrating Hayti’s return to the blues. This celebration supports the mission of keeping alive music rooted in the African American experience. Tickets are now on sale at evenbrite (search Hayti Blues & Roots). For additional information contact Angela Lee at firstname.lastname@example.org or visit hayti.org.
Since 1891 the historic brick structure located at the corner of Fayetteville and Lakewood Streets has been a cultural hub for Durham’s African American community. An anchor of “Black Wall Street,” the Center continues offering quality visual and performing arts program along with facility rentals and tours year round. From the acoustically near-flawless Performance Hall to the Lyda Moore Merrick Gallery to the Chuck Davis Dance Emporium, Hayti offers a vibrant space for artists, arts advocates, individuals, groups and organizations, and is committed to practices of equity and inclusion. Owned and operated by St. Joseph’s Historic Foundation, Hayti’s future is as rich as its past and as vital as its present. Hayti.org.
2017: Year of the Blues
March was Women’s History Month and Hayti collaborated with SOULOWORKS to present an excellent program, [email protected], in celebration. From start to finish this intergenerational celebration demonstrated the power of women past and present.
Thirty years ago the Bull Durham Blues Festival began. As the group Sounds of Blackness sang, “Everybody wants to sing my blues, nobody wants to live my blues.” Those words rang true then, and they ring true now. Among those powerful women whose lives helped shape the blues through music were Bessie Smith, Big Mama Thornton and Ella Baker, all born in March.
Another woman, born in March, helped shape our notion of the blues through comedy. Jackie “Moms” Mabley was undoubtedly one of the [email protected] whose comedy brought to life what many African-Americans, especially women, experienced during the early to mid-1900’s. Like Richard Pryor, Moms Mabley found a comedic voice for the darkness that was cast on her life at an early age.
The woman who would become known as famed comedian Moms Mabley was born Loretta Mary Aiken in Brevard, North Carolina, on March 19, 1894 to a large family. She experienced a horrifying, traumatic childhood. Her firefighter father was killed in an explosion when she was 11 and her mother was later hit and killed by a truck on Christmas Day. By age 14 Aiken had been raped twice (by and elderly black man and by a white sheriff) and become pregnant from both encounters, with both children being taken away.
Starting in the late 1930s, Mabley became the first woman comedian to be featured at the famed Apollo Theater, going on to appear on the theater’s stage more times than any other performer. Mabley’s standup routines were riotous due to the aesthetic she presented as being an older, housedress-clad woman in a floppy hat who provided commentary on racial bigotry to African-American audiences. Her jokes also pointed towards a lusty attraction to younger men. Loretta Aiken took her stage name, Jackie Mabley, from an early boyfriend, commenting in a 1970s interview that he had taken so much from her, it was the least she could do to take his name! Later she became known as “Moms” because she was indeed a “Mom” to many other comedians on the circuit in the 1950s and 1960s.
Mabley was billed as “The Funniest Woman in the World” even though she tackled topics, such as racism, too edgy for most mainstream comics of the time. One of her regular themes was a romantic interest in handsome young men rather than old “washed-up geezers”, and she got away with it because of her stage persona, where she appeared as a toothless, bedraggled woman in a house dress and floppy hat.
One such joke about preferring younger men was: “I’d rather pay a young man’s way from here to California than to tell an old man the distance!”
Another one: “My old man was so old, one day he went to snap his fingers and broke his wrist!”
On racism: “I don’t ever want to go to Alabama. The Greyhound would take me down there and the blood hounds run me back!”
On health: “Never smoke in bed…the ashes that fall on the floor could be you!”
Moms Mabley lived the blues. In her career that spanned 60 years she reached professional milestones and gained crossover appeal after appearing on the Smothers Brothers comedy show. However, like most African-American artists of her time, she did not make much money. During her career she worked with another North Carolina comic trailblazer, Pigmeat Markham. She performed on stage, in movies, and on television. Her soulful rendition of the song “Abraham, Martin and John” hit #35 on the Billboard Hot 100 in 1969.
Jackie “Moms” Mabley lived the blues; good, bad and ugly. If you don’t know who she is, find out.
Everybody wants to sing my blues, nobody wants to live my blues!”
The Jambalaya Soul Spoken Word team continues to engage and instill in youth and young adults the power of oral expression. Every month Dasan and the poets remind us that spoken word and poetry are good for the mind, spirit, and soul.
Most of us were exposed to poetry at very young ages. As babies we were soothed by a familiar tune: “Rock-a-bye baby in the tree top, when the wind blows the cradle will rock; when the bough breaks the cradle will fall, and down will come baby, cradle and all.” Although the words were sung, it was poetry. “One-two buckle my shoe; three-four open the door; five-six pick up sticks; seven-eight open the gate; nine-ten a big fat hen.” Poetry! When we learned to pray at bedtime it was a familiar children’s prayer: “Now I lay me down to sleep, I pray the Lord my soul to keep. If I should die before I wake, I pray the Lord my soul to take.” Poetry! We learned children’s rhymes which were, in effect, poems. Can you remember “Mary had a little lamb, its feet were white as snow, and everywhere that Mary went the lamb was sure to go?” What about “Humpty Dumpty sat on a wall, Humpty Dumpty had a great fall. All the king’s horses and all the king’s men couldn’t put Humpty together again?” Poetry!
Although we didn’t create those poems, we learned them and can still remember those childhood expressions. Poetry has been a part of us for most of our lives, so it stands to reason that we are transformed by the power of spoken word and poetry. Maya Angelou, Langston Hughes, Paul Laurence Dunbar, Nikki Giovanni, Gil Scott Heron, and those in our lives whose early impact on our souls taught us to love poetry instilled in us the foundation for creating our own expressions, our own beats, our own stories….
Do you remember your first poems?
Andrea once again produced an amazing program honoring our women and history. From beginning to end women of all generations came together to acknowledge that we stand on the mighty and magnificent shoulders of women artists, educators, mentors, family and friends.
Thanks, Andrea, for conceiving the idea that led to our spontaneous program in 2016. That was a lot of fun and, because of the response among artists and community, resulted in the 2017 program that resulted in planning for 2018. As Andrea indicated during our conversations, many women artists spend so much time making life happen and working hard that we become isolated. Bringing together community and a diverse group of women artists is a great way to acknowledge one another and to thank our respective communities and sources of inspiration.
[email protected] featured our gracious emcee Kimberly Gautault and the addition this year of wimmin vendors who added to the atmosphere with their artistic contributions. From the opening performance Zebulo by Collage Dance Company, to 7-year-old Ajua Arnette’s powerful performance as Harriet Tubman, to the finale with director Nicole Oxendine and the Hillside Touring Dance Company, [email protected] demonstrates the depth of talent, creativity, and energy that abounds in and around Durham.
This year’s program honored the life of educator, journalist and activist Ida B. Wells (July 16, 1862-March 25, 1931) and the life of author, filmmaker, activist and professor Toni Cade Bambara (March 25, 1939 – December 9, 1995).
Thanks again to everyone: Andrea E. Woods Valdez, Saydenu Tukun, Jon Paul McClellan, Latisha Casey, our artists, vendors, volunteers, patrons, the Hayti Heritage Center staff, SOULOWORKS, and Duke University Faculty Research.