Savannah Black Heritage Festival Brings Artistic Performances

Staff Report From Savannah CEO

Tuesday, January 30th, 2018

The 29th annual Savannah Black Heritage Festival will present numerous performing arts events. The 2018 SBHF theme “Celebrating the Dynamics of Cultures and Shared Experiences” will be observed February 1-18, 2018.

Opening the 29th festival is a performance from the Dayton Contemporary Dance Company. The premiere evening performance will be held Friday, February 2, 7:30 p.m., Johnny Mercer Theater. This performance is free and open to the public, and admission tickets will not be required. Seating will be on a first-come, first-seated basis. There will be a limited reserved-seat section for military families and seniors; however, these seats will be released 10 minutes prior to curtain call.

Debbie Blunden-Diggs, artistic director of the DCDC, will hold a public conversation February 1, 6:30 p.m., Jordan Bldg., Torian Auditorium, SSU campus. Additionally, DCDC will hold a community dance workshop and master class February 3, 9 a.m. Call 912-358-4309 for reservations.

The Savannah State University voice program, together with students from Beach, Johnson, Groves, Jenkins and Savannah high schools, will perform “Music by Black Composers,” February 4, 3 p.m., Butler Presbyterian Church, 603 W. Victory Dr.

Bright Star Theatre will present Freedom Songs: The Music of Black History, February 5, 6:30 p.m., Lithay Baptist Church, 2335 Thunderbolt Rd., and February 6, 5 p.m., Tatumville Neighborhood Center, 333 Coleman St. Bright Star will also perform a number of closed shows in schools throughout the festival.

The annual gospel concert will feature a BET Sunday Best winner, with opening performances by the SSU Wesleyan Gospel Choir, the Georgia Southern Anointed Voices, Armstrong Campus, and the Savannah Mass Choir of the Georgia Music Workshop of America. It will be held February 11, 5:30 p.m., Overcoming by Faith Ministries, 9700 Middleground Rd.

The annual Future of Jazz Concert and Tribute to the late Ben Tucker will be held February 13, 7 p.m., Jewish Educational Alliance, 5111 Abercorn St., and will feature local and regional young jazz vocalists and instrumentalists. The public can learn more about Tucker at a screening for the documentary In Tune: The Ben Tucker Story, February 17, 3 p.m., St. John Baptist Church, 522-28 Hartridge Street.

SSU Players by the Sea present two one-act plays: Contribution by Ted Shine and Day of Absence by Douglas Turner Ward, February 15, 8 p.m. This one-night, free performance requires advance reservations by emailing walkert@savannahstate.edu. Savannah State University, Kennedy Fine Arts Theatre.

Master storyteller Lillian Grant-Baptiste and the choir of historic First African Baptist of East Savannah will present “Still I Rise: The Resilience and Power of Our Story” through storytelling, music and folklore as tools of resistance and reconciliation throughout African-American history, February 18, 5:30 p.m., First African Baptist Church of East Savannah, 402 Treat Ave.