Harlem’s Apollo Theater will present the New York premiere of the opera Charlie Parker’s Yardbird on April 1 at 8 p.m. Composed by Daniel Schnyder and directed by Ron Daniels, the opera is described as a free-form expedition into the mind heart and personal purgatory of the bebop great, played by Lawrence Brownlee.
To mark the occasion, the theater has announced that during the month of March it will also offer Charlie Parker-related cultural events for the public.
On March 15, there will be a free panel discussion on Parker’s music and legacy at the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture. The panel will feature jazz scholar and historian Prof. Robert O’Meally of Columbia University, New York City music station WQXR host Terrance McKnight, poet and playwright Bridgette Wimberly and Charlie Parker’s Yardland librettist and host of the annual Charlie Parker Jazz Festival in Harlem Sheila E. Anderson.
On March 26, there will be a Charlie Parker Harlem Tour led by Harlem historian John Reddick.
On March 30, the saxophonist will be inducted in the Apollo Walk of Fame. The induction will feature presentations by Parker contemporary Jimmy Heath and more. This will be followed by a special dress rehearsal of Charlie Parker’s Yardbird for community and education groups.
For more information, visit http://www.apollotheater.org/