African-American Composers Exhibition Series / Classes and Workshops / March 2017

9th Annual African American Composer Series “Nearly Gone Gal: The Rescued Archives of Nellie Lutcher

The William Grant Still Arts Center Presents
Nearly Gone Gal: The Rescued Archives of Nellie Lutcher
March 11-June 10, 2017
Opening Reception: Saturday, March 11, 3:00-6:00pm

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Los Angeles (February 24, 2017) –  “Nearly Gone Gal: The Rescued Archives of Nellie Lutcher”,March 11-June 10, will exhibit archival recordings, newspaper articles, personal letters, original photographs, and significant archives related to jazz and pop singer, songwriter and pianist Nellie Lutcher.

The William Grant Still Arts Center will present our annual African American Composers Series Exhibition and Music Education Program. This year, the Center has the unprecedented opportunity to exhibit and highlight the life and work of jazz pianist and vocalist Nellie Lutcher. We will feature the personal and discarded archives of the artist credited as an influence on Nina Simone and the sound of Jazz and Pop in the 50’s and 60’s. Nellie Lutcher once made her home in the West Adams community where she was a longtime resident, living on Van Ness and Washington. Local historian and community
activist, Billie Green rescued her discarded archives from Washington and Hobart.

Displaying studio portraits, intimate family photos, contracts, handwritten charts, music and much more, the exhibition weaves a narrative of a  pivotal American composer, while stressing the importance of preserving legacies, archives and histories through community efforts. The archives also include hand written ledgers and materials of Musician’s Union, Local 47, which Lutcher served as Board Director.

An opening reception and concert for “Nearly Gone Gal: The Rescued Archives of Nellie Lutcher”, March 11-June 10, will take place on Saturday, March 11 from 3:00-6:00p.m. It will feature music performed live by vocalist Elaine Gibbs (finalist on the television program The X-Factor) and her band, paying tribute to Nellie Lutcher.

The life and work of Nellie Lutcher is this year’s focus for The William Grant Still Arts Center’s Annual African-American Composers Series. Now in its ninth year, the exhibition series celebrates the life and work of African-American composers each spring. Combining community archives with original artwork and music education, past exhibitions in the series have included So What! The Artistry of Miles Davis (2016), Duke Ellington, Love You Madly (2015)I Got My Pride: The Blues Tales of Leadbelly (2014), Arkestry of the Cosmos: The Universe Language of Sun Ra (2013), Deeds Not Words: The Life and Work of Max Roach and Abbey Lincoln (2012), A New Day: Nina Simone (2011) and The High Priest of Bop: The Jazz Odyssey of Thelonious Monk (2010).

The music of Nellie Lutcher is also being presented in conjunction with DCA’s African-American Heritage Music Education Program. The William Grant Still Arts Center focuses on teaching music and cultural history to beginning and intermediate students of all ages through practice and playing experience via the works of groundbreaking musical innovators in the tradition of the ArtsCenter’s namesake, Dr. William Grant Still.

The exhibition and music education program is also being presented
with support from local neighborhood councils United Neighborhoods
Neighborhood Council (UNNC) and Mid-City Neighborhood Council (MINC).

African-American Composers Arts & Music Education Program:

The eight-week free education series, beginning March 14, offers students the opportunity to learn music and art through the lens of the featured year’s composer as a way of passing lineage and heritage through the unique experience of being immersed in the work both visually and sonically. The William Grant Still Arts Center focuses on teaching music and cultural history to beginning and intermediate students of all ages through practice and playing experience in the tradition of the Arts Center’s namesake, who coined the term “Art Music”, Dr. William Grant Still.

Required registration for all classes will take place from March 4 – 9, and registration will be held in person for four days on a first come, first-served basis on March 4 from 12 noon to 5 PM, and March 7, 8. and 9 from 12 Noon -5 PM.