Our deepest condolences to the family and many friends of the late Harold Johnson, co-founder of eta Creative Arts Foundation, who served as its artistic director from 1971-1989. A Memorial Service will be held Wednesday (today), beginning with a Receptio


Our deepest condolences to the family and many friends of the late Harold Johnson, co-founder of eta Creative Arts Foundation, who served as its artistic director from 1971-1989. A Memorial Service will be held Wednesday (today), beginning with a Reception from noon-1:30 p.m., at eta, 7558 S. South Chicago Ave., followed by a Tribute Ceremony from 1:45-5 p.m.



In addition to skills as an actor, director, playwright and theater artist, Johnson was also a renowned acting instructor who has trained legions of students throughout the Midwest. He has exposed people from all walks of life to the magic of the theater through his productions, including S.C.L.C: Second Coming, Last Chance, The Regal Theater, Kintu and The Law of Love, Strange Fruit and Don’t Get Around Much Anymore.



Johnson directed N.R Davidson‘s El Hajj Malik, Theodore Ward‘s A Candle in the Wind (featuring William Marshall), A Change is Gon’ Com’ by Joe Turner, Purlie Victorious by Ossie Davis, Fats Waller: His Life and Times by Runako Jahi; and Jazz Set by Ron Milner. He also directed Richard Durham‘s legendary soap opera for WTTW Bird of an Iron Feather. His film credits include Sam Greenlee‘s The Spook Who Sat by the Door and Robert Altman’s The Wedding.



Gone, but never-ever forgotten!




Women’s Work – Carla Harris, managing director of Morgan Stanley and author of Expect to Win: 10 Proven Strategies for Thriving in the Workplace, keynotes the eighth annual Power: Opening Doors for Women, May 3, 3:30-9 p.m., at Merchandise Mart. The afternoon-evening event which consists of professional development sessions and a reception with the keynoter followed by simultaneous theme-based dinners hosted at various sites across the city. It also promotes and develops women leaders by providing a unique educational opportunity for women at all levels within their careers to interact and exchange ideas with thought leaders, industry experts and peers.

Deirdre Joy Smith is founder, president and visionary behind the seven-year-old organization that brings together senior level and high-potential women for educational sessions and a discourse on leadership. Since its inception, it has attracted more than 6,000 participants from across the nation and has garnered support from Fortune 500 companies and some of the country’s premier law firms and civic organizations. Currently, the program holds events in four U.S. markets: Chicago, Detroit, Philadelphia and Atlanta. The program is on track to expand to additional cities nationally and internationally. Among co-hosts: Nicole Johnson-Scales, Patricia Brown Holmes, Julie Kanak, Cynde Munzer, Rachel Mangoubi, Kathy Downey, Regine Corrado, Eileen Sweeney and Gail Golden. For more, call Deirdre Joy Smith, (312) 258-4585.



Moms’ Day Music – An Evening with Dennis Edwards and the Temptations Revue and Ray Silkman, jazz saxophonist, will take centerstage on Mothers’ Day, May 13, 6 p.m. at Christ Universal Temple at a benefit showcase presented by CUT and the Rev. Derrick B. Wells, senior minister. Partial proceeds will fund Living in the Spirit, Polished Pebbles, Voices International and other women’s community programs. Donations: general admission, $50; V.I.P. seating and reception, $100. Get tickets at CUT’s bookstore, online or call (773) 568-2282. Sharing the music we love with the ones we love!




Fest Music – Ravinia Festival has added new shows to its 2012 season line-up, including the debut of soul singer Macy Gray and R&B/soul legend Anita Baker, echoing with rhythm and blues, including the debut of Gray who opens for the July 22 Seal concert. The Grammy award-winner’s top-charting hits include Request Line and I Try. Baker, who makes her long-awaited Ravinia debut on Aug. 25, who has been performing for over three decades, has won eight Grammys, creating such hits as Rapture, Sweet Love and Giving You the Best That I Got. See Ravinia.org for more details. Public ticket online sales begin April 26. Both concerts will feature lawn screens.




Fore! Play! – Friends of JoAnn Thompson, alderman and committeeman of the 16th Ward host a fundraising Golf Outing in her name on July 26 at Lincolnshire Country Club in south suburban Crete. William L. Dods is chairing the event, and among co-chairs are Jimmy Akintonde, Chuck Bowen, Phil Mappa, Mike Mozal, Enrique Munoz, Henry Page, Young Pate Jr., Bill Payton Sr., Johnny Smith, John Tolbott and Joseph Williams. Mayor Rahm Emanuel is honorary chair. Sponsorship levels range from $7,500 – $650. Golf levels: $800, lunch and dinner for a foursome; $150, per individual for golf, lunch and dinner; $100, per individual, golf only; $75, dinner only. Want advance reservations? Call (773) 434-3889.




Newsy Names – Condoleezza Rice, former secretary of state, comes this way May 17 to speak before The Executive Club of Chicago’s Global Leaders Luncheon at a location yet to be announced Hats off to dear and long-time favorite family friend, Covette Durham Hamilton, retired school tea

cher who has just recently published Begethie Wenferd Meets King Tut, the second children’s book of the Begethie Wenferd adventure series. She’s been a classroom teacher and reading specialist and now operates her own Afterschool Reading Lab … Melanie Marshall, co-star of Fela!, the high-energy, three-time Tony Award winning African-themed dance-musical, visited Trinity United Church of Christ and ministered in song at the Easter Sunday service. (And by the way, Fela!, has been extended one week through this Sunday at the Oriental Theatre) Tickets are moving fast, fast, fast for Saturday’s showcase featuring Common (aka Lonnie Rashid Lynn Jr., the award-winning hip hop rapper, actor, author and poet), at Chicago Illuminating Co., 19 E. 21st St., and hosted by Kenny Johnson, Mark Fuller and the Common Ground Foundation.



Congrats to Dr. Pamela C. Cannamore, associate professor at City Colleges of Chicago, on being named recipient of Northern Illinois University Black Alumni Council’s Outstanding Alumni Award and will be honored at its 40th Annual Scholarship Awards Gala on April 21, 6-11 p.m., at DuSable Mueum. The $50-$60 per ticket event will feature an hors d’oeuvres buffet, open bar and live entertainment. Also honored: recipients of the Fanny Ruth Patterson Scholarship. Call Michelle Japlon, (815) 753-1452, for reservations Happy b’day to Monroe Anderson, Dr. Sonja Givens, Ald. Roderick Sawyer, Nate Grant, Corky McClerkin, Bryant Johnson, Stephen Smith, Brock Matthew Duerson.




Copyright 2012 Chicago Defender


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