May 02, 2017
CELEBRATE MISSISSIPPI'S BICENTENNIAL
WITH "MONDAY MOVIE NIGHTS" AT DELTA BLUES MUSEUM
This official bicentennial project was made possible by a grant from the Mississippi Humanities Council, through support from the Mississippi Development Authority
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Mississippi - May 02, 2017] - In honor of
Mississippi's 2017 Bicentennial, the Delta Blues Museum
will present a monthly outdoor film series that reflects
the state's rich musical heritage. The monthly
series, "Monday Movie Nights: Celebrating Mississippi's
Music History and Heritage," begins on Monday,
May 22nd and will run through September. This official
bicentennial project was made possible by a grant
from the Mississippi Humanities Council, through support
from the Mississippi Development Authority. Films
will be shown on the museum's outdoor stage, and will
be free to the public.
Museum Director Shelley Ritter
shares the idea behind the series: "Our goal is
to help our audience understand the influence that
musicians from our state and the Delta region have
had on music and the arts, and this series will provide
an outlet where the community can come together to
celebrate this contribution. We want to create community
support that will ultimately sustain the series as
an annual series through donations and event volunteers.
We envision the event growing to include bi-monthly
films and perhaps food trucks that highlight a different
local restaurant each month".
A brief discussion and/or
"Question and Answer" session will be held prior to
each screening, providing the audience context as
to the movie's connection to Delta Blues music
as well as background on the importance of the film
and its time and place in cinematic history. Clarksdale
filmmaker and critic Coop Cooper will facilitate these
discussions with a variety of panelists including
academic representatives from Coahoma Community College
and Delta State University.
Featured films will
be tied to museum exhibits and activities, beginning
with "Robert Johnson Month" in May and including "John
Lee Hooker Month" in August. In case of inclement
weather, the films will be shown in the upstairs meeting
room of the museum, which is ADA accessible. Guests
are encouraged to bring their own seating - each screening
will start at approximately 8:00pm.
May 22 - Crossroads (1986)
May is Robert Johnson Month
at Delta Blues Museum, and this film is loosely based
on the myth of his "selling his soul at the Crossroads."
During the month of May, the Museum will feature an
exhibit of Kim Rushing's photographs of Parchman Farm
and a presentation by Jerry Jenkins on West African
drumming. Cupcakes, provided by Kroger, will be served
to visitors on May 8, the birthday of Robert Johnson.
June 19 - Ode to
Billy Joe (1976)
Based on the song written by Mississippian Bobbie
Gentry, the film tells the fictional story of "the
day that Billy Joe McCallister jumped off the Tallahatchie
Bridge," which is located within an hour of Clarksdale.
Museum highlights will feature an Artist Spotlight
on Tallahatchie County's own Sonny Boy Williamson
as well as an exhibit on Sonny Boy in the gallery
along with a "King Biscuit Time" display.
July 24 - Jailhouse Rock (1957)
The classic feature, starring Elvis Presley, showcases the influence of blues on Elvis' music. The Museum will also feature the exhibit "30 years of the Sunflower River Blues & Gospel Festival" throughout the month.
August 21 - The Blues Brothers (1980)
August is John Lee Hooker Month at the Museum, and the blues legend makes an appearance in this iconic film--as do many other Mississippi blues artists. August 22, 2017, marks what would have been Hooker's centennial birthday. Museum events planned for August include 30th Annual Sunflower River Blues & Gospel Festival performances and a special exhibit of John Lee Hooker artifacts and memorabilia in the Museum gallery.
September 18 - Cadillac Records (2008)
Loosely based on the story of Chess Records, the film focuses on the record label that gave birth to numerous Mississippi blues artists including Muddy Waters, Howlin' Wolf, Willie Dixon and others. The museum will also showcase a collection of cigar box guitars during this month.
the Mississippi Humanities Council
The Mississippi Humanities Council is a private nonprofit corporation funded by Congress through the National Endowment for the Humanities to provide public programs in traditional liberal arts disciplines to serve nonprofit groups in Mississippi. The humanities are the study of history, literature, religion, languages, philosophy, and culture. The Mississippi Humanities Council creates opportunities for Mississippians to learn about themselves and the larger world and enriches communities through civil conversations about our history and culture.
Mississippi Development Authority
The Mississippi Development Authority (MDA) is the state of Mississippi's lead economic and community development agency, with approximately 300 employees engaged in providing services to businesses, communities and workers throughout Mississippi. The agency works to recruit new business to the state and retain and expand existing Mississippi industry and business. MDA also provides technical assistance to the state's entrepreneurs and small businessmen and women and oversees programs that support Mississippi's minority and women-owned businesses. In addition, the agency provides Mississippi's corporate citizens with export assistance, manages the state's energy programs and oversees programs that help its communities become more competitive. The agency also promotes Mississippi as a tourism destination and supports the creative economy and film industry.
About the Delta Blues Museum
Established in 1979 by the
Carnegie Public Library Board of Trustees and re-organized
as a stand-alone museum in 1999, the Delta Blues Museum
is Mississippi's first music museum and the nation's first
museum dedicated to the American art form known as the Blues.
A 2013 recipient of the IMLS National Medal for
Museum and Library Services-the nation's highest honor for
museum and library service to the community- as well as
a 2014 winner of the National Arts & Humanities Youth
Program Award, the Delta Blues Museum is dedicated to creating
a welcoming place where visitors find meaning, value and
perspective by exploring the history and heritage of the
unique American musical art form, the Blues, as a Great
River Road Interpretive Center.
For more information on events
or programs, please call (662) 627-6820, or visit the Museum
web site at www.deltabluesmuseum.org.
Members of the press may register
in the PRESS
ROOM on the Museum's website to access
further information, downloadable images and related materials.
This newsletter is supported in part
by funding from the Mississippi Arts Commission, a state
in part, from the National Endowment for the Arts, a federal