Harlem and jazz are intertwined with one another, the influence of the music created during the Harlem Renaissance is a lesson in American history. To walk the wide, tree-shaded streets of Harlem is a unique experience. Brownstones stand strong and powerful, with the stories of music, art, and culture as much a part of their foundation as each stone. You are invited to experience the legacy of jazz and it’s ongoing development through a new exhibit opening May 23.
The Children’s Museum of Manhattan (CMOM) and the National Jazz Museum in Harlem (NJMH) have collaborated to present an interactive multimedia exhibit designed to bring original art and live performances to families. “Jazzed! The Changing Beat of 125th Street” is a celebration of artistic achievements during the 1920’s-1940’s, and the jazz icons who helped shape that era. Opening May 23, and running through December 31, 2014, visitors will have the opportunity to experience the energy of the birth of Harlem jazz culture, at CMOM located at 212 West 83rd street.
Guests are encouraged to participate in hands-on art and music workshops through singing, dancing, score composition, instrument crafting, and even an opportunity to make your own tap shoes. Other immersions into the world of jazz include a ballroom designed for Duke Ellington and his jazz orchestra, a theater starring Bill “Bojangles” Robinson, and a jazz club featuring Ella Fitzgerald.
The NJMH All-Star Band will perform a special concert series opening weekend May 24-25. Continuing throughout the exhibit, piano presentations and live performances by jazz artists and dance companies will display how art can break through social barriers, tell a story, frame history and influence the future.
The Children’s Museum of Manhattan is devoted to child development through early education, creativity, and culture. The National Jazz Museum in Harlem embodies a commitment to the preservation, promotion, appreciation and celebration of jazz locally and internationally. The collaboration of these institutions for this exhibit, funded in part by the Institute of Museum and Library Services, will bring together children and adults, into the world of jazz history and the Harlem Renaissance.