The already-excellent “Soul of a Nation: Art in the Age of Black Power 1963–1983” is well worth a visit: The Broad’s standout Black Art exhibition feels alive with eye-catching canvases and powerful pieces. But how about a summertime jazz series, staged outside of and throughout the Downtown museum, to sweeten the deal?
The Broad is hosting two summertime jazz series, kicking off with the Soul of a Nation Celebration on on June 1. Legendary producer Quincy Jones has curated—and will introduce—an evening of jazz at the museum’s olive-tree–lined outdoor plaza. Bozoma “Boz” Saint John hosts an evening that includes performances from Terrace Martin, Cory Henry, Arin Ray, Eryn Allen Kane and Alex Isley.
Later on, the museum will host a pair of concerts as part of its Black Fire Sessions. Expect a more challenging, experimental slate of music from these two shows, which draw inspiration from “Soul of a Nation’s” more radically inventive works. On July 17, saxophonist Roscoe Mitchel and pianist Brett Carson lead an evening with additional performances across the museum: scat from Busdriver and vocals and keys from Georgia Anne Muldrow and Declaime in the Oculus Hall, layered “beat music” from Teebs in the lobby and dance pieces from Mecca Vazie Andrews in the first-floor galleries. On August 14, find composer Anthony Braxton and harpist Jacqueline Kerrod in the lobby; with soulful singer Kelsey Lu, politically-charged rapper Beans and an a cappella jazz choir led by Jimetta Rose in the Oculus Hall; as well as performance art from Maurice Harris in the galleries.
Admission to each show costs $25 (just a few bucks more than the special exhibition’s $18 entry fee) and includes access to “Soul of a Nation” as well as the museum’s third-floor galleries (unfortunately, Yayoi Kusama’s Infinity Mirrored Room—The Souls of Millions of Light Years Away won’t be open during the event).