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Sunday 4/14 show: Carl Hancock Rux

The next show will air on Sunday April 17, 2013 from 11 PM to 1 AM Eastern Standard Time on WBAI Radio, 99.5 FM in the NYC metro area or streaming online at wbai.org. This installment of the program will feature award-winning poet, playwright, novelist, essayist and recording artist Carl Hancock Rux. Listen to a short preview below:

RuxCarl Hancock Rux is an award-winning poet, playwright, novelist, essayist and recording artist. He is the former head of the MFA Writing for Performance Program at the California Institute of the Arts (2006–09) and has taught or been in residence at the University San of California–Diego, Stanford University, the University of Massachusetts Amherst, Hollins University, the University of Iowa and Brown University.Rux is the author of the novel, Asphalt, the OBIE Award winning play, Talk, and the Village Voice Literary prize-winning collection of poetry, Pagan Operetta. Rux has also worked as a writer and frequent guest performer in dance, collaborating with Marlies Yearby’s Movin’ Spirits Dance Theater, Urban Bush Women, Jane Comfort & Co., Bill T. Jones/Arnie Zane Dance Company, the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater and Martha Clark. Rux received a BESSIE© award for his direction of the Lisa Jones/Alva Rogers dance musical, Stained. Rux originated the title role in the folk opera production of The Temptation of St. Anthony, directed by Robert Wilson with book, libretto and music by Bernice Johnson Reagon as part of the RuhrTriennale festival in Duisburg, Germany. The opera made its American premiere at the Brooklyn Academy of Music/ BAM Next Wave Festival in October 2004 and official world premiere at the Paris Opera, Garnier.

His film credits include The Grand Inquisitor (as The One) directed by Tony Torn, Brooklyn Boheme (documentary) and Migrations directed by Nelson George; The Revolution Will Not Be Televised: a film About Gil Scott-Heron (documentary) among others.

Rux is the subject of the Voices of America television documentary, Carl Hancock Rux, Coming of Age, recipient of the CINE Golden Eagle Award (Larry Clamage/Richard Maniscalo producers), was host and programming director of the WBAI radio show, Live from The Nuyorican Poets Cafe, contributing correspondent for XM radio’s The Bob Edwards Show and frequent guest host on WNYC’s Soundcheck. Rux co-wrote and narrated the radio documentary, Walt Whitman; Songs of Myself, awarded the New York Press Club Journalism Award for Entertainment News. Originally aired in 2005, Songs of Myself has been broadcasted annually, most recently on WNYC 93.9 FM on April 24, 2011.

In August 2007 Rux’s “The Blackamoor Angel” was performed as part of Bard Summerscape at Bard College in Annandale-on-Hudson, New York. Rux joined forces with composer Deirdre Murray to reimagine the curious life of Angelo Soliman (1721- 1797). Born in what is known today as Cameroon, he was abducted by slave traders at a young age, eventually landing in Vienna and tutoring two emperors, reputedly rubbing elbows with Mozart in a Masonic lodge and married to a cousin of Napoleon Bonaparte. However, in death Soliman wound up as taxidermy–stuffed and showcased beside elephants and apes at Vienna’s Schoenbrunn Zoological Garden.

To mark the 10th anniversary of 9/11, WNYC’s the Greene Space commissioned Rux to create and perform a spoken word piece meant to be a mosaic of remembrance of this historical event. Titled: A City Reimagined: Voices of 9/11 in Poetry and Performance, the piece was presented in partnership with The New Press and the Columbia Center for Oral History live in the Greene Space on September 7 & 8, 2011. Excerpts were subsequently aired on WKCR in NYC. Rux recited poetry he had crafted for the occasion. Actors Joan Allen, Ruben Santiago-Hudson, Rocco Sisto, Peter Strauss, Rachel Ticotin, Ty Jones, Tamela Aldridge and Ishani Das read stories and remembrances excerpted from the Columbia Center for Oral History’s and the Institute for Social and Economic Research and Policy’s collection of the accounts and observations of hundreds of people from diverse New York neighborhoods and backgrounds immediately after 9/11. The production featured live music from cellist/ trombonist Dana Leong and an art installation designed by Cey Adams.

It was Rux’s return to the Greene Space after a memorable appearance in A Global Piano and Literary Salon: Bebop Spoken Here on May 12, 2011 where he had entranced the audience with an impromptu recitation accompanied by jazz pianist, Gerald Clayton.

Mr. Rux’s last appeared onstage in the Foundry Theatre’s production How Much is Enough? in its three week run at avante garde performance space, St. Ann’s Warehouse last fall.

Mr. Rux is the curator of the WeDaPeoples Cabaret originally conceived by Sekou Sundiata and presented each September by Harlem Stage. Last fall the cabaret featured the comedienne and political satirist, Reno, and a mesmerizing performance by Nona Hendryx at the Harlem Stage Gatehouse.

His cds include Rux Revue (Sony/550), Apothecary Rx (Giant Step) and Good Bread Alley (Thirsty Ear). His latest release is “Homeostasis,” which is “an exploration of jazz and 1960s/70s psychedelic vinyl…lush arrangements—a return to music beyond the cookie cutter format of beats and the omnipresent vocoder vocals.”

He is the recipient of several awards including the Herb Alpert Prize, NYFA Prize, NYFA Gregory Millard Fellow, and NEA/TCG Artist-in-Residency Fellow. He is currently working on his new novel and awaiting the premiere of his opera, Mackandal, in the fall of 2013 ((book & lyrics by Rux/ music by Yosvany Terry/art by Edouard Duval Carríe)

More information about Rux’s April 19 and 20 Apollo Theater dates is available here.

Watch pianist Gerald Clayton ahd Carl Hancock Rux perform live in WNYC Radio’s Greene Space.

Also see Rux’s video of the blues-inflected “Good Bread Alley”.


Sunday 1/13 show: Jayne Cortez

The next show will air on Sunday January 13, 2013 from 11:00pm – 1:00am Eastern Standard Time Monday on WBAI, 99.5 FM in the NYC metro area or streaming online at wbai.org. On Friday, December 28, 2012, Jayne Cortez left this world. As a tribute to her life and spirit, we will rebroadcast our exchange with this writer, poet, performance artist, and co-founder of Yari Yari, an international conference on literature by women of African descent. You can hear a 30-second preview of the show below.

Poet, writer, activist, performer Jayne Cortez interviewed on this Suga in My Bowl episodeJayne Cortez was born in Arizona, grew up in California, and currently lives in New York City and Dakar, Senegal. She is the author of ten books of poems and performer of her poetry with music on nine recordings. Her voice is celebrated for its political, surrealistic, dynamic innovations in lyricism, and visceral sound. Cortez has presented her work and ideas at universities, museums, and festivals in Africa, Asia, Europe, South America, the Caribbean and the United States. Her poems have been translated into many languages and widely published in anthologies, journals, and magazines. She is the recipient of several awards including: Arts International, the National Endowment for the Arts, the International African Festival Award, The Langston Hughes Award, and the American Book Award. Her most recent books are “The Beautiful Book” Bola Press 2007, “Jazz Fan Looks Back” published by Hanging Loose Press, and “Somewhere In Advance of Nowhere” published by Serpent’s Tail Ltd. Her latest CD recordings with the Firespitter Band are “Taking the Blues Back Home,” produced by Harmolodic and by Verve Records, “Borders of Disorderly Time” and “Find Your Own Voice” released by Bola Press. Cortez is director of the film “Yari Yari: Black Women Writers and the Future,” organizer of “Slave Routes the Long Memory” and “Yari Yari Pamberi: Black Women Writer Dissecting Globalization.” Both conferences were held at New York University. She is president of the Organization of Women Writers of Africa, Inc. and is on screen in the films: “Women In Jazz” and “Poetry In Motion.”

Hosted, Produced, and Engineered by Arts Producer Joyce Jones.

Editors note: Here at Suga’ in My Bowl, we already miss Jayne a lot. We saw her often at various events and feel fortunate to have known her and heard her perform live. We’ve heard that plans are underway for public tributes and will post them on the site and via our Facebook and Twitter streams when we get concrete dates for these.

Web Extras

Read Jayne’s obituaries at the New York Times and The Guardian.

Watch Jayne perform live with drummer (and son) Denardo Coleman

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