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By Taki S. Raton
“Mahalia” for me was definitely musically informative and historically stimulating,” says Milwaukee entrepreneur Willie Smith.
Smith was among the audience members who nearly filled to capacity the 484 seat Friday, April 22 opening of “Mahalia” at Marcus Center for the Performing Arts’ Vogel Hall, 123 East State Street.
This 30th – year anniversary production of the Hansberry- Sands Theatre stands signature tradition reflective of work staged by this esteemed Milwaukee based ensemble.
“The play was magnificent,” says Milwaukee County Board of Supervisors chairman Lee Holloway.
“The performers were so excellent in …
HAATz Off to Pioneer Teachers of MPS Column:
By Vicki Singh
Willie Abney was born in Atmore, Alabama, some 60 plus years ago. His parents (Susie and Willie Sr.) had high hopes for all their children. “Miss Susie” as she is known by the Black artistic family, has attended nearly all of his productions. Abney was the only one of her children to become an actor in the theatre.
As a young boy in Atmore, he recognized his maternal grandfather was much better off than those in his small town. His grandfather owned …
With a voice that Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. once said “comes along once in a millennium,” the legend that is Mahalia Jackson is celebrated in A Gospel Calling: Mahalia Jackson Sings, gracing DVD April 13 from Infinity Entertainment Group.
Born into poverty in 1911, Mahalia Jackson’s throaty, fervent, rich and distinctive New Orleans-tinged contralto took her from Louisiana’s Plymouth Rock Baptist Church choir (performing from age four) to an international reputation as gospel’s first lady and “the greatest voice of the century.”
Decades after her 1972 death, Mahalia remains the world’s …