We all know the poem: "A Dream Deferred." Langston Hughes wrote it, if you hadn't heard. "Does it dry up like a raisin in the sun? Or fester like a sore -- and then run?" One of the greatest black literary figures of the 20th Century, Hughes was a prolific writer of poems, plays, short stories, and novels. He was considered a key player in the Harlem Renaissance of the 1920s, with work that was heavily influenced by jazz music and the common language and culture of black America. As part of Black History Month, Miami-based jazz violinist and composer Nicole Yarling sings and recites a tribute to Hughes with her own quartet. Trumpet player Melton Mustafa helps out and jazzy poet Dan Jaffe lends his verse too. No slouch, Yarling has worked and recorded with Jimmy Buffett, Dizzy Gillespie, and Joe Williams. The tribute begins at 2:00 p.m. at the Coral Reef public library, 9211 Coral Reef Dr. Admission is free. Call 305-233-8324. -- By John Anderson
Choirs raise beautiful noise
Are you blessed? Are you truly blessed to the point that you can't help smiling? Here's a tip in case you're not quite feeling the spirit: Listen to gospel music, the deep delightful sound of black gospel. The choirs stomp and sway and harmonize in an infectious manner that will make the most churlish crab a believer. Featured performers include the award-winning Florida Memorial College Gospel Choir, Rashan Amir Bryant of the Blessed Destiny Ministry, Donna Bryant-Jones, and South Florida soloist Cynthia Lee. The concert starts at 6:00 p.m. at the Miami Beach Community Church, 1620 Drexel Ave., Miami Beach. Donations are accepted. Call 305-538-4511. -- By Juan Carlos Rodriguez
SUN 2/22 A couple of classical music powerhouses from Paris take the stage together at 4:00 during Sunday Afternoons of Music. On cello will be Paris resident (but Canada-born) Gary Hoffman (above). Lauded for his skillful, sensitive stylings, he was the 1986 winner of the Rostropovich International Cello Competition and at age 22 the youngest faculty appointee at the Indiana University School of Music, where he taught for 8 years. Pianist Philippe Bianconi was born in France and has performed solo and with orchestras all over the world, earning praise for his technical mastery and lively interpretations. The dazzling duo will offer works by Brahms, Bach, and Grieg at Gusman Hall, 1314 Miller Dr., Coral Gables. Tickets cost $40. Call 305-271-7150. -- By Nina KormanChutney Jam
India's music, dance celebrated
SAT 2/21 "It's about time," says Bollywood star Akshay Kumar. The singing and dancing hunk is referring to the recently announced Bollywood concerts scheduled to take place in Pakistan. The development is significant as India and Pakistan have been embroiled in war virtually since their acrimonious partition in 1947. Headliner artists such as Kumar and Amitabh Bachchan (regarded by many as the Elvis Presley of Bollywood) are warming the cultural ties between the two countries.
Meanwhile in Broward County, the Indian community and its hyphenated offspring will be performing music and dance representing all parts of the subcontinent. Vocalist Manisha Upadhyay will be singing traditional songs accompanied by tabla master Rajesh Bhandari. Violinist Rama Krisha Srinivasan will perform music from southern India while University of Miami statistics professor S. Rama-Krishnan jams on percussion.
Additionally 4 groups from across South Florida will be performing traditional moves such as the garbo circle dance and ras stick dance. One group will use red-hot bhangra music, a colorful hybrid of ancient sounds with electronic back beats.
Indian Classical Music and Folk Dancesbegins at 7:00 p.m. at the Broward County Main Library Auditorium, 100 S. Andrews Ave., Fort Lauderdale. Tickets cost $10 and $20. Call 954-885-1466. -- By Juan Carlos Rodriguez
Figuring out the world Shanley style
THU 2/19 Life stinks perhaps a little more than it stunk back in 1990, when John Patrick Shanley's play, The Big Funk, was first produced in New York. Just ask a knife thrower with a pregnant wife, their unemployed actor friend, and the woman he finds covered with petroleum jelly in a local bar. They're the characters Shanley unites to create what might be something stinky indeed. The outcome of all the weirdness? We won't ruin it for you, but it's life-affirming and involves a bubble bath. At 8:00 p.m. local theater company the Madman Experiment stages the work at the Main Street Playhouse, 6766 Main St., Miami Lakes. Tickets cost $10 and $15. Call 305-490-5732. -- By Nina Korman