The Girls in the Band is set to run at New York’s Lincoln Center starting today and running throughout next week. In addition to the Lincoln Center screenings, the award-winning documentary film will soon appear for a week-long run at Laemmle Noho 7, a handsome new theater situated in the middle of the arts district in North Hollywood, California. The Girls in the Band tells the story of female jazz instrumentalists and their struggle for recognition from the 1920s to the present. Written, directed and co-produced by Judy Chaikin, the film will premier at the Laemmle during an invitation-only screening on June 4, then run for the general public from June 7-13.
Combining rarely seen archival footage and interviews with musicians including trombonist Melba Liston (pictured above) drummer Viola Smith, saxophonist Roz Cron, bassist Carline Ray and trumpeter Clora Bryant, Chaikin explores how these and other women helped shaped the history of American music, usually in the face of extreme sexism and racism. The film also explores how female musicians of today—Maria Schneider, Anat Cohen, Esperanza Spalding and others—are building upon the legacy of their predecessors.