Multicultural Arts and Entertainment News

Multicultural Entertainment News is a special edition of MMRnews featuring news about theater, film, music, dining and entertainment events and entertainment marketing news with a multicultural focus. It covers audience and outreach campaigns aimed at markets including Hispanics, African Americans, Asian Americans, women, GLBT and people with disabilities. Sign up to subscribe to MMRnews.

Tribeca Film Institute’s® Historic Tribeca All Access® Program Expands to Include Interactive Storytellers through $200,000 Grant from MacArthur Foundation

Tribeca Film Institute (TFI) will expand its Tribeca All Access (TAA) program to include grants and resources for interactive storytellers statistically underrepresented in the media maker community, made possible by $200,000 in support from the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation. Since 2004, the diversity-focused TAA program has served as TFI’s premiere scripted and documentary filmmaker program, specializing in providing a range of programming for storytellers who create groundbreaking films that bring unheard voices to the mainstream. As a result of this expansion, TFI will implement three new programming initiatives under TAA: an Interactive Prototype Fund, a workshop for TAA Interactive grantees and a dedicated TAA hackathon. These initiatives will also broaden the program’s diversity of artistic mediums and create engaging and infinitely ‘share-able’ work to inspire dialogue and action about issues facing our society. Submissions for the inaugural Interactive Prototype Fund, which aims to build new bridges between technology and filmmaking, opened on January 8th. The grant will encourage the development of exceptional and novel ideas from applicants for projects, rather than work that is already in development. The second programming initiative is the residential workshop, which will be offered to TAA Interactive grantees and will run for three consecutive days during Fall 2015. Led by an experienced facilitator and TFI staff, this workshop will allow the grantees to engage with their projects and build community with each other in order to encourage more collaboration in this emerging space. Lastly, to amplify the message of the work being achieved through the TAA Interactive grants, TFI will design an audience-facing hackathon to rapidly prototype projects around a central issue or theme. TFI, in partnership with The MacArthur Foundation, will develop the topic and programming, which will reflect the organizations’ mutual goals for social impact. This hackathon will be held over a 4-5-day-long workshop with an emphasis on the final product. The participants will be different from the Interactive Prototype Fund grantees, and will be selected with an eye towards diversity in recognition of the serious lack of diversity in the technology field. For more information and Rules & Regulations on the grants, please visit Tribeca Film Institute website,


“The Last Laugh: An Alternate History of Spanish Comedy,” Film Series at New York’s Film Society of Lincoln Center, December 12-18, NYC

The Film Society of Lincoln Center will present “The Last Laugh: An Alternate History of Spanish Comedy,” a series focusing on the tradition of grotesque humor throughout the history of Spanish cinema, from December 12-18, and will include appearances by Santiago Aguilar, José Luis Cuerda, Isaki Lacuesta, and Óscar Pérez. Politically charged, with healthy doses of black humor, the films in the series portray how drastically Spanish culture and society have changed over the last 60 years at the same time that they show how many aspects of Spain have hardly changed at all. The series includes: "20 Centimeters" by Ramón Salazar, "Amanece, que no es poco" by José Luis Cuerda, “Astronauts" by Santi Amodeo, "Holy Thriller" by María Cañas, "Caution to the Wind" by Isaki Lacuesta, "Justino: A Senior Citizen Killer" by Santiago Aguilar and Luis Guridi, "The Last Circus" by Álex de la Iglesia, "Mommy’s a Fool" by Santiago Lorenzo and several classics including "El verdugo" by Luis García Berlanga. For more information, visit


New Gloria & Emilio Estefan Musical ON YOUR FEET! Sets Broadway Dates

James L. Nederlander, Estefan Enterprises, Inc and Bernie Yuman announced that ON YOUR FEET! – a new musical based on the life story of seven-time GRAMMY® winning international superstar Gloria Estefan and her husband, producer-musician-entrepreneur Emilio Estefan – will have its Opening Night on Broadway on Thursday, November 5, 2015, withpreview performances beginning Monday, October 5, 2015 at the Marquis Theatre in New York City. ON YOUR FEET! is the story of two people who—through an unwavering dedication to one another and their pursuit of the American dream—showcased their talent, their music and their heritage to the world in a remarkable rise to global superstardom. Set to Gloria’s chart-topping hits such as “Rhythm Is Gonna Get You,” “1-2-3,” “Mi Tierra,” and “Conga,” in addition to new music penned by the Estefans, the show will be choreographed by four-time Drama Desk nominee Sergio Trujillo (Jersey Boys, Memphis) with a book by two-time Drama Desk nominee Alexander Dinelaris (The Bodyguard Musical, Zanna Don't). The musical, directed by two-time Tony Award® winner Jerry Mitchell (Kinky Boots, Hairspray), will land on Broadway following a five-week World Premiere engagement at the Oriental Theatre in Chicago, from June 2 – July 5, 2015. The production also launched an international casting search, Reach Gloria (#ReachGloria) which offered performers around the world a chance to audition for all roles in the Broadway cast of ON YOUR FEET! by submitting audition videos online at


News Blurb: Alex and Andrew Smith's new film “Winter In The Blood”

The film is based on the Acclaimed Novel by James Welch. Directors Alex and Andrew Smith, in their first movie since The Slaughter Rule, (which introduced the world to Ryan Gosling and Amy Adams) have made a film that is true to the lyrical and unflinching spirit of James Welch’s classic 1974 novel of Native American life. The film was shot in the badlands of Montana and is accompanied by an unforgettable score from the acclaimed Austin band, Heartless Bastards and features brand new songs by Robert Plant, Cass McCombs, Cowboy and Indian and Black Prairie, among other musical artists. Associate produced by Sherman Alexie, a Spokane/Coeur d'Alene Indian who grew up on the Spokane Indian Reservation, and is an internationally renowned Native American writer, poet, screenwriter and filmmaker.The film will be released by Kino Lorber in NYC at the IFC Center on August 20th with rollout to follow.


Tribeca Film Institute Announces 150K in Grants to Outstanding Underrepresented Filmmakers

The Tribeca Film Institute (TFI) today announced ten promising new film projects selected for the 11th annual Tribeca All Access (TAA) program. The TAA program supports filmmakers from statistically underrepresented communities and will grant each project $15,000, as well as offer year-round support, guidance, and resources to help filmmakers complete them.  This year’s winners boast an especially diverse collection of stories, including:   Read more >>

News Blurb: The Film Society of Lincoln Center Announces Lineup for the 21st Edition of “Spanish Cinema Now”, December 7-16

The Film Society of Lincoln Center announces the lineup for the 21st edition of “Spanish Cinema Now”, December 7-16, featuring the latest films from Spain, as well as a salute to surrealist master, Luis Buñuel. Kicking off this year’s series is Spain’s official Foreign Language Oscar submission, Pablo Berger’s “Blancanieves”, a silent retelling of Snow White, complete with a traveling troupe of bullfighting dwarves. Closing out the festival is director Alvaro Longoria’s “Sons of the Clouds”, the newest film featuring Academy Award-winning actor Javier Bardem who takes audiences on a journey to the Western Sahara, where the Sahawai people wait for permission to return to their ancestral lands. Spanish Cinema Now will feature a selection of films celebrating the director, producer and screenwriter, Luis Buñuel. The sidebar includes “Tristana”, starring young screen siren Catherine Deneuve. The Film Society of Lincoln Center will also present a one-week theatrical run of Buñuel’s 1972 hit, “The Discreet Charm of the Bourgeoisie” to celebrate the film’s 40th anniversary. The Instituto Cervantes New York will also be hosting lectures and special screenings to celebrate Buñuel on December 11-14. Tickets are now on sale both at the box office and online at   Read more >>

News Blurb: World Premieres in Dance, Music and Opera Anchor Harlem Stage’s 30th Anniversary Season, NYC

Harlem Stage announced highlights of its 30th Anniversary season, including world-premiere performances commissioned through its WaterWorks program by well-known artists of color working in dance, music, opera and more.  A national leader in producing and presenting, Harlem Stage will premiere the commissioned works this fall and next spring, along with its ongoing mix of diverse and intriguing artistic programs in various disciplines. “These exciting premieres showcase what’s wonderful about providing new opportunities of artistic expression by artists of color who may not otherwise have had a chance to fully realize and present  their ideas on  stage,” says Harlem Stage Executive Director Patricia Cruz.  Premieres in Harlem Stage’s 2012/2013 season year include  “Holding It Down: The Veterans Dreams Project” and “Sleep Songs”, a two-part musical and poetic distillation of the dreams and nightmares of veterans of color from the Iraq and Afghanistan conflicts on the one hand and the response from those affected by the conflict in Iraq; “Pavement”, a dance/theater work inspired by the seminal 1980s John Singleton film “Boyz N The Hood” by choreographer Kyle Abraham, who says the work “examines the state of Black males and the communities that have shaped them”; “We Insist! – Freedom Now Suite”, a new dance/music work conceived by Alexa Birdsong and choreographed by Ayo Jackson that reinterprets the 1963 Max Roach jazz suite on the occasion of the 150th anniversary of the Emancipation Proclamation.; “Makandal”, an ambitious new contemporary opera produced by Harlem Stage presented in English, Creole and Spanish inspired by the life of the revolutionary 18th Century Haitian leader and the relentless pursuit of freedom by the generations that followed him. Harlem Stage dedicates resources from its WaterWorks program to develop groundbreaking new work, or “art that reverberates,” as its current season theme indicates. For more information, visit   Read more >>

News Blurb: The Apollo Announces a Special Engagement of “Ask Your Mama” with Jessye Norman and the Roots, March 23rd, NYC

The Apollo Theater and the Manhattan School of Music in New York collaborated and announced the first show of “Ask Your Mama” crafted by Emmy Award-winning composer Laura Karpman and Grammy winner Jessye Norman will be on March 23, 2013 for Apollo’s 2012-13 season. “Ask Your Mama” is a 90-minute sonic tapestry of music, film, and spoken word by EmmyAward- winning composer Laura Karpman based on Langston Hughes’s “Ask Your Mama: 12 Moods for Jazz” that bursts the boundaries of time, place, and verbal expression to trace the currents and tributaries of cultural diasporas. This is the first time the work is being performed at the Apollo stage, a  fitting home for the piece as it is just blocks away from the Harlem home of Langston Hughes, one of the foremost figures in the Harlem Renaissance. The performance will feature the Manhattan School of Music Chamber Sinfonia conducted by George Manahan, who also conducted the sold-out world premiere at Carnegie Hall and a subsequent performance at the Hollywood Bowl. The Apollo is a national treasure that has had significant impact on the development of American culture and its popularity around the world. Tickets are $35, $55, $75 and $125 (VIP Tickets) and will go on sale Monday, Nov 19th at 10 a.m. through Ticketmaster. Visit  Read more >>

News Blurb: 13th New York International Latino Film Festival Returns, August 13-19, NYC

The 13th Annual New York International Latino Film Festival (NYILFF), the premier Latino film festival in the country, runs from Monday, August 13 through Sunday, August 19, 2012 at the Chelsea Clearview Cinemas, NYC. The festival features U.S. and International features, documentaries and shorts.  Panels, red carpet premieres, celebrity appearances and free outdoor screenings. Launched in 1999, the New York International Latino Film Festival (NYILFF) mission is to showcase the works of the hottest emerging Latino filmmaking talent in the U.S. and Latin America, offer expansive images of the Latino experience, and celebrate the diversity and spirit of the Latino community. NYILFF presented by HBO™, is the only film event to have had the endorsement of Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s NYC Latin Media and Entertainment Commission since its formation in 2003. For tickets and more information, visit    Read more >>

News Blurb: The Apollo Cultural Exchange Series Presents A Celebration of June’s Black Music Month Starring African Reggae Star Tiken Jah Fakoly, June 16th, NYC

Apollo TheaterIn recognition of Black Music Month in June 2012, the Apollo Theater’s Cultural Exchange Series will celebrate over 50 years of reggae music with a special concert starring African Reggae icon Tiken Jah Fakoly on Saturday, June 16th at 8pm. Known for his politically charged lyrics, Tiken Jah Fakoly is the premier artist in African reggae and has often been called the African Bob Marley, drawing comparisons to the reggae legend for his soulful vocals, the revolutionary messages in his music, and his mastery of roots-reggae. The world music star has sold out stadiums and venues all over Europe and Africa and will now make a rare trip to the United States for his first ever appearance on the legendary Apollo stage, where he will perform classics and material from his latest album, the critically acclaimed  African Revolution. This special Cross Cultural concert coincides with the 50thanniversary of Jamaica’s independence, a milestone that has brought international attention to reggae music’s evolution, its impact on popular culture around the world, and the international sub-genres it has inspired, including African reggae. The Apollo’s Cross Cultural Exchange presentations focus on music, artists, or projects representing diverse cultures that may be U.S. or internationally-based.  Many of the artists presented represent cultural communities in Harlem and Upper Manhattan, including artists of Dominican, Puerto Rican, Senegalese, Ivorian and Malian cultural heritage. This show will also feature popular New York City based reggae outfit The Cannabis Cup Band. Based on its cultural significance and architecture, the Apollo Theater received state and city landmark designation in 1983 and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Tickets are on sale ($25 to $55) at the Apollo Theater Box Office. The Apollo in New York City is a national treasure that has had significant impact on the development of American culture and its popularity around the world. For more information, visit  Read more >>