Ron OJ Parson named artistic consultant for ‘Porgy and Bess’

George Gershwin’s “Porgy & Bess,” which remains one of his most significant theatrical musicals, is staged to appear at the Court Theatre at the University of Chicago May 12 through June 19 with Ron OJ Parson serving as the artistic cons

George Gershwin’s “Porgy & Bess,” which remains one of his most significant theatrical musicals, is staged to appear at the Court Theatre at the University of Chicago May 12 through June 19 with Ron OJ Parson serving as the artistic consultant, Charles Newell as director and Doug Peck as the musical director. The score includes such classics as Summertime” and “It Ain’t Necessarily So,” and others that were performed by such stars as Billie Holiday to Ella Fitzgerald. Parson and an all-African cast will present a thoughtful, never-before-seen retelling of Gershwin and Heyward’s “folk opera.” For tickets contact the Court Theat Theatre Box Office at (773)753-4472, or visit Court’s website at www.CourtTheatre.org. Groups of 10 or more may purchase tickets by calling Milan Penjovich in Court’s Group Sales Office at (773) 834-3243.

A PASTOR WITH SECRETS at eta Creative Arts Foundation appears in the play “Birthright”, a production set in Slidell, La. one year after Hurricane Katrina, with the action of this drama consisting of many plot twists. “Birthright” is featured at eta Square, 7558 S. South Chicago Ave., at 8 p.m. Thursday through Saturday and Sundays at 3 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. Vaun Monroe, famous filmmaker, directs this exciting production. For more information call (773) 752-3955 or visit www.etacreativearts.org. General admission is $30. Senior and group rates.

PHOTOGRAPHIC IMAGES by Cassandra Armstrong and David H. Jenkins are featured in eta Gallery in the adjoining area of the theater.

CHICAGO JAZZ ENSEMBLE with JON FADDIS and a special memorial tribute to Mahalia Jackson is booked at the Chicago Symphony Center, 220 S. Michigan Ave., May 20 at 8 p.m. The tribute is to one of the world’s great gospel vocal legends. Jackson was the first gospel singer to perform at Carnegie Hall, she sang at Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s funeral and she performed at John F. Kennedy’s presidential inauguration.

GUS GIORDANO DANCE SCHOOL is moving to its new location in the Andersonville area at 5230 N. Clark St.

“THE GOSPEL ACCORDING TO JAMES” written and directed by Charles Smith, will have its Chicago premiere May 14. The production will run through June 12 at the Victory Garden Biograph Theater, 2433 N. Lincoln Ave., in Lincoln Park. The Gospel According to James features two-time Tony-nominated actor Andre DeShields.

BALLIWICK CHICAGO’S “PASSING STRANGE” FEATURES JAYSON “JC” BROOKS who was acclaimed for his performance as Coalhouse Walker in Porchlight’s “Ragtime” at Chicago for the Performing Arts, 777 N. Green St. Tickets for the regular run are $25 and general admission are $35 reserved seating.

BROADWAY IN CHICAGO announces the revival of “WEST SIDE STORY” at the Cadillac Palace Theatre, 151 W. Randolph. The production opens July 19 and runs through August 14.

Copyright 2011 Chicago Defender

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