Tag Archives: Ray Lockhart
For those assigned to commit James Weldon Johnson’s narratives to memory in their younger days, M Ensemble’s God’s Trombones will wrap them in warm nostalgia. For others, M Ensemble skillful interpretation should elicit praise for introducing, and keeping, this important treasure of cultural history in the public eye.
The Mighty Gents is a poignant moving tale worthy of a Greek tragedy except that the protagonists are members of a street gang from the mid-1960s, emotionally, economically and sociologically lost in a Newark ghetto in 1978.
Music, sometimes tenderly introspective, sometimes upliftingly powerful, is deftly woven throughout the surging triumph of both the rise of the all-black 1939 New York Renaissance basketball team and M Ensemble’s moving recreation of the “Rens” banner year in Layon Gray’s Kings of Harlem.
Imagine white water rapids raging past you; now imagine the liquid is molten lava – a heedless force of nature threatening to destroy everything. Such images are the by-product of watching the incomparable Ethan Henry bringing one of August Wilson’s tragic heroes to three-dimensional life in M Ensemble’s The Piano Lesson.