Schomburg Center Announces 2019 Annual Women’s Jazz Festival

MEDIA CONTACT: Ayofemi Kirby |

FEBRUARY 26, 2019 – The Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture today announced its 2019 Annual Women’s Jazz Festival celebrating the contributions of Black women performers across the genre, and featuring both well-known and unsung women performers in jazz today.

Hosted in honor of Women’s History Month, the festival will be held at Schomburg Center over four consecutive Mondays beginning on March 4 and ending on March 25.  Tickets to each evening’s performance are $35 are available for purchase at


  • March 4: Dear Nina

    Power, poise and passion reign supreme in this pairing of voice and strings that celebrates the legendary and at times uncharted cannon of Nina Simone. Drea d'Nur (vocalist/pianist) accompanied by a six-piece string ensemble courtesy of Rootstock Republic: LIVE, share center stage in this uniquely intimate and newly orchestrated songbook of Nina's love songs, blues and protest music. Dear Nina is a sonic love letter to Nina Simone.

  • March 11: A Salute to Women in Bebop

    An evening curated by musician, jazz composer, and Obie Award winner Diedre L. Murray, composer of the original score for Two River Theater's upcoming production of Oo-Bla-Dee, created by Golden Globe-winning actor and playwright Regina Taylor. Oo-Bla-Dee paints a shimmering portrait of an all-female band of African-American bebop musicians traveling the country following the end of World War II. The evening’s performance includes Gabrielle Murphy (alto saxophone and flute), Brandon McCune (piano), Mimi Jones (bass), and Eli Fountain (percussion and drums).

  • March 18: Lekecia Benjamin

    Join us for a special evening with dynamic saxophonist and bandleader Lakecia Benjamin presenting "A Woman’s Perspective, We March On" as a part of her A Women's Perspective series, paying special tribute to Aretha Franklin, Nancy Wilson, and Nina Simone.

  • March 25: A Great Day in Harlem with Jazzmeia Horn!

    A celebration of the women in the iconic "Great Day in Harlem" photo captured by Art Kane in 1958 with jazz vocalist Jazzmeia Horn. The image featured jazz icons from Count Basie to Sonny Rollins. But of the many women in the field, only three are present in the photo - band leader Mary Lou Williams, vocalist Maxine Sullivan, and pianist Marian McPartland. On our closing night, we'll celebrate the enduring influence of jazz vocalists and the unsung women in jazz history.

Each performance and program of the 2019 Women’s Jazz Festival is open to the media. Professional photography and video recordings are prohibited without expressed consent. To request media credentials, please contact Ayofemi Kirby at  

About the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture

Founded in 1925 and named a National Historic Landmark in 2017, the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture is one of the world’s leading cultural institutions devoted to the preservation, research, interpretation, and exhibition of materials focused on African American, African Diasporan, and African experiences. As a research division of The New York Public Library, the Schomburg Center features diverse programming and collections totaling over 11 million items that illuminate the richness of global black history, arts, and culture. Learn more at

About the New York Public Library

The New York Public Library is a free provider of education and information for the people of New York and beyond. With 92 locations—including research and branch libraries—throughout the Bronx, Manhattan, and Staten Island, the Library offers free materials, computer access, classes, exhibitions, programming and more to everyone from toddlers to scholars, and has seen record numbers of attendance and circulation in recent years. The New York Public Library serves more than 18 million patrons who come through its doors annually and millions more around the globe who use its resources at To offer this wide array of free programming, The New York Public Library relies on both public and private funding. Learn more about how to support the Library at