From film to literature to music, 15 ways to celebrate Black History Month in St. Louis | St. Louis Public Radio

From film to literature to music, 15 ways to celebrate Black History Month in St. Louis

Feb 1, 2017

The idea of setting a special time for Americans to learn about black history began in 1926 from educator Carter G. Woodson. Concerned about lack of awareness about accomplishments of African-Americans, Woodson, the son of former slaves, set aside a week for students to learn about people who received scant attention in history books. Since 1976, every U.S. president has designated February as Black History Month. Other countries, including Canada and the United Kingdom, also devote a month to celebrating black history.

Here are 15 events you can attend this month to learn about black history:

SATURDAY, FEB. 4

Africa to America
2 p.m. | St. Louis County Library

A performance involving the history culture, language and creation of three dance styles: West African, Jazz Swing and Hip Hop. Presented by Beyond Measure Dance Theater. All ages.

SUNDAY, FEB. 5

Jean-Michel Basquiat: The Radiant Child
1 p.m. | St. Louis Art Museum

The museum will screen films starring, directed, or produced by African-Americans. $5 public and free for members.

MONDAY, FEB. 6

Kaitlyn Greenidge, "We Love You, Charlie Freeman"
7 p.m. | St. Louis County Library Headquarters

An author talk with Kaitlyn Greenidge. The novel explores of America's failure to find a language to talk about race.

SATURDAY, FEB. 11

Steppin' into Higher Ed
11 a.m. - 4 p.m | St. Louis Public Library - Schlafly Branch

Panel discussion on the "Decline of Black Education," followed by a community fair with representatives from local colleges and a step performance by a Greek organization.

African-American Read-In
2 p.m. | St. Louis County Library - Indian Trails Branch

Join more than a million readers nationally to celebrate African-American literature. Bring your own book or borrow one of ours. 

Pinx Dance Performance
3 p.m. | St. Louis County Library - Natural Bridge Branch

Pinx Academy of Dance presents a Katherine Dunham-style youth performance.

SUNDAY, FEB. 12

A Ballerina's Tale
12 p.m. | St. Louis Art Museum

The museum will screen films starring, directed, or produced by African-Americans. $5 public and free for members.

Larry Wilmore, formerly with "The Nightly Show with Larry Wilmore"
2 p.m. | St. Louis Central Library

In addition to Wilmore's appearance, library branches will hold programs throughout the month of February, focusing the theme, “The Crisis in Black Education.” 

FRIDAY, FEB. 17

Set the Night to Music
7 p.m. | St. Louis County Library - Lewis and Clark Branch

Saxophonist and songwriter, Rod Tate performs smooth, contemporary, worship jazz and R&B. Also featuring Love Jones the Band, performing a variety of music.

Lift Every Voice: Black History Month Celebration
7:30 p.m. | Powell Hall

The concert will celebrate African-American culture and traditions that have influenced the history of St. Louis and cities around the world.

SATURDAY, FEB. 18

Gentlemen of Vision
1 p.m. | St. Louis County Library - Jamestown Bluffs Branch

A performance from the dance troupe Gentlemen of Vision.

SUNDAY, FEB. 19

Beasts of the Southern Wild
1 p.m. | St. Louis Art Museum

The museum will screen films starring, directed, or produced by African-Americans. $5 public and free for members.

THURSDAY, FEB. 23

The Black Experience: Specializing in the Art of the Impossible
6 p.m. | St. Louis County Library - Headquarters

Educators Stefan Bradley and De Nichols lead a conversation and art about challenges victories African-Americans face. 

Henry "Box" Brown and Tales of The Underground Railroad
6:30 p.m. | St. Louis County Library - Headquarters

Bobby Norfolk shares the story of a slave turned hero, along with other tales of ordinary people taking extraordinary risks in the name of freedom.

SATURDAY, FEB. 25

Gift of Gospel Celebration
6 p.m. | St. Louis County Library - Lewis & Clark Branch

Program features recording artist Eneazer Blissett Layne and Pastor David Catron, a St. Louis area musician and singer. The New Mount Zion choir will also perform, along with other special guests. Light refreshments will follow the program.

TUESDAY, FEB. 28

Words from the Drum
7 p.m. | St. Louis County Library - Indian Trails Branch

Kunama Mtendaji drums, sings, dances and tells stories from the United States, Africa, Brazil and the Caribbean.