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UofL, Empower West Louisville marks Black History Month with music, dance, speakers

The University of Louisville and Empower West Louisville will mark Black History Month with several public programs. All events are free unless otherwise noted.
The University of Louisville
Feb. 1 – a black history celebration and keynote address by Blair Imani, an activist for black, Muslim and femme communities and executive director of Equality for HER. The 6 p.m. program in Strickler Hall’s auditorium begins with music by UofL’s Black Diamond Choir followed by more music, dances and comments from students and community members around the theme of “Carrying the Torch.”
Feb. 2-6 and 9-12 – “Baltimore,” a play by Kirsten Greenidge directed by Theatre Arts Department Chair and Professor Nefertiti Burton. Performed by students in the African American Theatre Program, the play examines the implications and aftermath of a racially charged incident on a college campus. Performances are Feb. 2-6 and Feb. 9-12 (no performances Feb. 7-8) at 8 p.m. weekdays and Saturdays and 3 p.m. Sundays, Thrust Theatre, 2314 S. Floyd St. Admission is $8-$15.
Feb. 13 – Composer and conductor Quincy Hilliard performs with the University Symphonic Band and Noe Middle School Band as part of an African American Music Heritage Institute event, 7 p.m., School of Music, Comstock Hall. General admission is $10 and $5 for students. It is free for UofL students.
Feb. 17-26 – “Empowerment: Making and Shaping History,” a new series at the Gheens Science Hall and Rauch Planetarium that explores themes in social justice.  Shows are 6 p.m.  Feb. 17, 18 and 24 and 2 p.m. Feb. 18, 19, 25 and 26.
Feb. 19 – “A Salute to African American Athletes: Trailblazers Who Broke Color Barriers in College Sports” will be the UofL/Yearlings Club’s Black History Month program, 4-6 p.m., Yearlings Club, 4309 W. Broadway.
Civil Rights Tours
UofL also offers free online guides to two Louisville civil rights tours: a self-guided tour of Louisville civil rights history, compiled by the Anne Braden Institute for Social Justice Research, and a trail tour of downtown markers noting civil rights demonstration spots near businesses that refused to serve African Americans. The College of Arts and Sciences developed both tours with community partners.
For the marker tour, contact Clest Lanier at 502-852-3042 or cvlani01@louisville.edu or check the Louisville Visitor Center; for the civil rights history tour, contact Dionne Griffiths at 502-852-6142 or dcgrif02@louisville.edu.   

Empower West Louisville Citywide Book Read
Empower West Louisville, a collection of churches and religious organizations from throughout Louisville, is sponsoring Louisville’s second citywide book read during Black History Month.

Dr. Carol Anderson, author of the book "White Rage: The Unspoken Truth of Our Racial Divide," will discuss the book and engage in conversation with Dr. Kevin Cosby on February 2 at 7 p.m. at Crescent Hill Baptist Church, 2800 Frankfort Avenue. 

White Rage is the book Empower West Louisville is encouraging people to read during Black History Month, which was recently named a finalist for a National Book Critics Circle Award for 2016.

Spaces are limited and can be reserved here.

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