The Wallis & Brooklyn's National Sawdust Projects Present (M)IYAMOTO IS BLACK ENOUGH
The Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts and National Sawdust Projects, the producing arm of Brooklyn's acclaimed National Sawdust, present (M)iyamoto is Black Enough, a collaborative musical and spoken word exploration of meaning and conversation based on the controversy surrounding Ariana Miyamoto, the biracial Miss Universe Japan 2015 winner who weathered backlash for her lack of "pure" parentage - that she was not "Japanese enough" - on Thursday, March 14 and Friday, March 15, 2019, 8:00 pm, in the Lovelace Studio Theater at The Wallis. With music composed by Andy Akiho and text by two-time National Poetry Slam champion Roger Bonair-Agard, (M)iyamoto is Black Enough creates a brash symphony of hard-driving funk and punk rhythms and biting social commentary. It features Akiho on steel pan and percussion, Sean Dixon on percussion, Jeffrey Zeigler on cello and Bonair-Agard's spoken word. This bold narrative about people, justice, struggle, joy and celebration is also a cerebral jaunt through belief systems. Critics proclaim, "This is exactly what we need to hear right now," (Arts & Culture Texas).This is the first collaboration between The Wallis and National Sawdust, a non-profit organization that provides resources and programmatic support to both emerging and established multi-cultural artists and composers who tell their stories through music. National Sawdust is named after the building's original tenant, a sawdust factory.
"National Sawdust, a celebrated incubator of classical and new music, fosters groundbreaking work with a distinctive social viewpoint," says The Wallis' Artistic Director, Paul Crewes. "The Wallis is pleased to partner with them to bring the powerful and compelling (M)iyamoto is Black Enough to audiences in Southern California."
Miyamoto, a Japanese national who grew up as a self-described mixed race "hafu," is the child of an African American father and Japanese mother. As the country's first biracial pageant winner to represent Japan at The Miss Universe competition, where she made it to top 10, she drew hostile criticism, much of it on social media. But for the artists involved in (M)iyamoto is Black Enough, including two "hafu" - a Trinidadian-Brooklynite Black man, and an Irish/Finnish/Swedish hip-hop influenced drummer- Miyamoto is certainly Black enough.
A free pre-concert "Prelude" at 7:00 pm, which includes a complimentary glass of wine provided by The Henry Wine Group, features Classical KUSC's Brian Lauritzen in conversation about the evening's program with the musicians.
Single tickets are $40. Visit TheWallis.org, call 310.746.4000, or stop by in person at the Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts Ticket Services Office located at 9390 N. Santa Monica Blvd., Beverly Hills, CA 90210.