Women’s History Month: Katherine Dunham

Katherine Dunham was an American dancer-choreographer who was best known for incorporating African American, Caribbean, African, and South American movement styles and themes into her ballets. The Katherine Dunham Collection at the Library of Congress consists of moving image materials that document the extraordinary journey of a woman who changed the face of American modern […]

African-American History Month: James Reese Europe

“He was our benefactor and inspiration. Even more, he was the Martin Luther King of Music.” Pianist Eubie Blake said this of  composer/bandleader James Reese Europe,  who was born in Mobile, Alabama on February 22, 1881. Europe’s accomplishments run from the grand “Concert of Negro Music” that he conducted for a 125-man orchestra at Carnegie Hall in […]

Happy Birthday Mister President, Happy Birthday to You

We all can’t be Marilyn Monroe cooing a personal birthday greeting to the Commander-in-Chief. But this President’s Day weekend gives all Americans a chance to remember our iconic leaders and take advantage of holiday sales — and gives the Mid-Atlantic States more time to dig out from the record-breaking snowfall that brought the region to […]

Happy Holidays from the Music Division!

Imagine what the holidays were like in the years before there was such a thing as Black Friday or Cyber Monday. Sing along to “I’ll be home for Christmas.”  Sense the wonder and joy – and perhaps a bit of fear – in children’s hearts when you tell them that magical disembodied voice is  Santa Claus […]

Songs for the Solstice

The winter solstice arrived at 5:47 pm Eastern Standard Time Greenwich Mean Time. As the East coast digs out from a major snowstorm,  let us bundle up by the fire and sing and dance to songs of winters past. From the Historic Sheet Music Collection, 1800-1922, come several indicators of the amorousness with which a […]

About

The Performing Arts Blog will showcase treasures in the Music Division’s collections of Music, Theater and Dance, from works of the great masters to long forgotten slices of our musical heritage. This blog will also highlight events in the Library’s concert series in the Coolidge Auditorium.   Sources of selected images from site banner African […]