Born April 7, 1915, Billie Holiday is considered one of the greatest American jazz singers of all time. Author Grayson Dantzic shares behind-the scenes anecdotes and images from his 18-year journey making his book Jerry Dantzic: Billie Holiday at Sugar Hill. Through the rediscovering of his late father Jerry Dantzic's unseen photographs of Billie Holiday taken in 1957, the previously known narrative changes resulting in a rediscovering of her humanity. Grayson Dantzic will be in conversation with jazz recording artist, composer and activist Candice Hoyes as they discuss the life and legacy of the amazing and iconic Lady Day. Candice Hoyes will perform and be accompanied by pianist Jonathan Thomas. Moderated by Daniel Dawson, NYU Gallatin professor and member of Kamoinge, a pioneering collective of African American photographers founded in 1963. Talk to be followed by a book signing.
Time: 6 – 8 pm
Location: Heights Alumni Lounge
NYU Silver Center • 32 Waverly Place, 1st Floor
(between Washington Square East and Greene Street)
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Grayson Dantzic is an archivist, curator, documentary videographer, musician and photographer. He is a graduate of Brandeis University and the Palmer School of Library & Information Science of Long Island University. He is the special projects archivist for the Warner Music Group Archives and the Paul Seligman Collection at the Metropolitan Opera Archives and has worked with many photographers and their collections. In 1999, he and his mother established the Jerry Dantzic Archives. He edited and wrote text for the books Jerry Dantzic's New York: The Fifties in Focus (Edition Stemmle, 2002) and Jerry Dantzic: Billie Holiday at Sugar Hill (Thames & Hudson, 2017). He has curated many photographic exhibitions, and is co-founder and Executive Vice President of the American Photography Archives Group (APAG) since it began in 2000. Currently he is working with Smithsonian Institution Traveling Exhibition Service (SITES) on a 4-year traveling exhibition based on his father's unseen Lady Day photographs from 1957 in Jerry Dantzic: Billie Holiday at Sugar Hill.
Candice Hoyes is a vocalist/composer NPR distinguished as “intentional about making music that reflects the world she lives in, as well as sounding great and grooving.” Soulful and classically trained, her love of music began at age six as she began studying piano and eavesdropping as her grandfather spun iconic jazz vinyls that filled their home. Hoyes began formal vocal study as an undergraduate at Harvard University, soon gracing the international stages of Carnegie Hall and Lincoln Center as an award-winning classical soloist. In 2015, she toured and recorded with the Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra under artistic director Wynton Marsalis, before releasing her own critically-acclaimed album debut, On A Turquoise Cloud. Hoyes has performed with Marsalis, Ray Angry of The Roots, Philip Glass, Deepak Chopra, and Wycliffe Gordon. In 2017, Hoyes delivered a TED Talk performance and created and led a new performance lecture series for Jazz at Lincoln Center and City University of New York. She is recording her second album, due in 2019.
With his musical roots firmly planted in his gospel upbringing, jazz pianist Jonathan Thomas brings a soulful and meaningful intent to every note he plays. Thomas earned a BFA on a full scholarship at The New School for Jazz and Contemporary Music in 2015 and began his study at The Juilliard School in 2017 for a Masters in Music. He has been student to pianists Aaron Goldberg, Dan Nimmer, Aaron Parks, and Taylor Eigsti. In 2012 he was awarded The ASCAP foundation Herb Alpert Young Jazz Composer Award. Deemed stunningly good by the New York Times, Thomas has played in jazz festivals around the world, opened for Benny Golson, and has performed with Charles Toliver, Bruce Williams, Richie Goods, Jazzmeia Horn, and the Cleveland Jazz Orchestra, among many others. He can be found at his bi-weekly residency at Smalls Jazz Club which he has hosted since 2015.
A multi-talented artist, Daniel Dawson has worked as a photographer, filmmaker, curator, arts administrator, consultant and scholar. He has served as Curator of Photography, Film and Video at the Studio Museum in Harlem (NYC), Director of Special Projects at the Caribbean Cultural Center (NYC), Program Manager at the American Museum of Natural History (NYC) and Curatorial Consultant and Director of Education at the Museum for African Art (NYC). As a photographer, he has shown in over 35 exhibitions. In addition he has curated more than 70 exhibitions including Harlem Heyday: The Photographs of James Van Der Zee and The Sound I Saw: The Jazz Photographs of Roy DeCarava. Professor Dawson has also been associated with many prize-winning films including Head and Heart by James Mannas and Capoeiras of Brazil by Warrington Hudlin. He has also taught seminars on African Spirituality in the Americas at the University of Iowa, Columbia University, New York University and Yale University. Professor Dawson is currently a member of Kamoinge, a pioneering collective of African American photographers founded in 1963.
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