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New York, NY
Sunday, April 14th, 2013 at 7:00pm
Kris Johnson's musical "Jim Crow's Tears"
"Jim Crow's Tears" is a jazz oratorio composed by Kris Johnson and influenced by the history of minstrelsy and blackface entertainment in the United States. This educational presentation combines musical, theatrical, and visual arts to tell the story of a young slave who was forced to become a minstrel performer. "Jim Crow's Tears" makes ties between minstrel shows and modern day media; focusing on the perpetuation of the negative stereotypes of African Americans.
The composition is orchestrated for vocal quartet, jazz octet, string quartet, and woodwind quartet, featuring text read by a narrator. There is also a black iconography slide show of negative images from the past and present that contribute a great deal to the audience's understanding of the demeaning and disturbing nature of the racial prejudices formed against African Americans in this country.