Houston's Juneteenth Celebration presents an exciting music lineup to celebrate Juneteenth, one of the region's most significant historic events, which commemorates the abolition of slavery in Texas. Music fans will gather from across the region at Miller Outdoor Theatre, Houston's largest public outdoor theatre, at 7pm on Sunday, June 19, 2011, to hear performances by noted artists representing the rich African American musical traditions of the region, including blues, jazz, brass band, funk and zydeco. Houston's Juneteenth Celebration attracts 8,000 - 9,000 Houstonians and visitors to the city each year. The event is free.
Highlighting this year's musical performances is the Glen David Andrews Band, from New Orleans, Louisiana. Singer and trombone player Glen David Andrews, whose cousin is Troy Andrews (Trombone Shorty), is equally as studied and practiced in the traditions of New Orleans music, including brass band and second line music, traditional jazz and gospel, and modern funk and R&B. A rising star, Glen David Andrews appears in two seasons of HBO's "Tremé", and is featured in numerous documentaries, including Lolis Eric Elie's "Faubourg Tremé: The Untold Story of Black New Orleans" and Spike Lee's "When the Levees Broke".
While the Glen David Andrews Band will bring his lively New Orleans jazz and brass band sound to Miller Outdoor Theatre, Corey Ledet and His Zydeco Band will present the rural Creole zydeco music that is always a hit with Houston audiences. Originally from Houston, Texas, Ledet began playing zydeco music at age 10 and soon moved to southwest Louisiana to hone his zydeco skills with legends of the music and tour the festival circuit after releasing his first CD in 1999.
Blues legend Texas Johnny Brown and the Quality Blues Band will provide the soul-searching blues sound to the lineup. Brown's extensive career as a recording artist and major festival attraction started when he toured with Bobby "Blue" Bland and Junior Parker in the 1950s and 1960s as guitarist and bandleader, and worked as a studio musician for Houston's Duke-Peacock Records.
Houston's Juneteenth Celebration will honor Ms. Izola Ethel Fedford Collins of Galveston, Texas, a writer and educator who is the author of numerous articles and books, including "Island of Color: Where Juneteenth Started". She will be present to meet with interested audience members and sign books. Informative presentations will be made by Congresswoman Sheila Jackson Lee, City Council Members Wanda Adams and Jolanda Jones, and other community leaders.
During music breaks, the audience will be treated to short readings by young poets who were featured in the "Space City Slam: Grand Slam 2011" Houston competition, who will go on to national competition.
Juneteenth ("Emancipation Day"), with its roots in Galveston, Texas, is a historical observance growing in popularity across the Gulf Coast and the United States. Officially observed in more than 26 states, Juneteenth is honored in many of the same ways as July 4th – with family get-togethers, cookouts, religious gatherings, and live music. Juneteenth began on June 19, 1865 when Major General Gordon Granger read General Order No. 3 in Galveston, more than two months after the end of the Civil War, proclaiming "Slaves are free." Juneteenth spread to Houston, where it has been celebrated annually for nearly 150 years. In 2008, Houston's Juneteenth Celebration was called the "Number 3 Hotspot in the Nation" by Smithsonian Magazine in an article about summer festival destinations. The event is attended by people from coast to coast – from San Jose, California to Bangor, Maine.
Houstonians are urged to strengthen the tradition of Juneteenth by coming to Hermann Park early on Sunday, June 19, 2011, to celebrate with family, friends and coworkers. The park features 445 wooded acres with picnic tables and grills, along with fountains, gardens, statues, playgrounds for children and educational facilities, such as the Houston Museum of Natural Science and the Houston Zoo.
Miller Outdoor Theatre is located in Hermann Park at 6000 Hermann Park Drive, Houston, Texas, 77030. Miller Outdoor Theatre is wheelchair accessible. MetroRail serves Hermann Park. Information can be found at www.ridemetro.org. Concert-goers bringing cars are encouraged to carpool.
Houston's Juneteenth Celebration, is produced by Houston Institute for Culture with support from the City of Houston through the Miller Theatre Advisory Board and the National Endowment for the Arts.
Go to the Miller Outdoor Theatre WEBSITE.
Invite family and friends on FACEBOOK.
Link to JUNE19.ORG.
Miller Outdoor Theatre is located in Houston's Hermann Park. Plan your visit.
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Juneteenth is a celebration of freedom and commemoration of the abolition of slavery. It has been honored since 1865. LEARN MORE
Emancipation Park was established in Houston's Third Ward as a site for freed slaves and their descendents to celebrate Juneteenth. LEARN MORE
Frederick Douglass has been called "the father of the Civil Rights movement in the United States."
The Emancipation Proclamation was effective by authority of President Abraham Lincoln on January 1, 1863. LEARN MORE
"Juneteenth Revisited" - Houston Press columnist John Nova Lomax recounts the history of the Juneteenth Blues Festival. LEARN MORE
Smithsonian Magazine, in its May 2008 issue, recommends Houston's Juneteenth celebration as the Number 3 "Hotspot" in the nation in "Destination America."
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