“This is precisely the time when artists go to work. There is no time for despair, no place for self pity, no need for silence, and no room for fear. We do language. That is how civilizations heal.”- Toni Morrison
“Now more than ever, we must look to our artists to be our truth-tellers and to challenge us toward creative solutions to the many problems mankind faces.” - Sidney Poitier
The Unity Suite
The Unity Suite by Dr. Mark Lomax, II
A multidisciplinary project focused on elevating the human spirit focused on healing, transformation, and unifying the human family.
Afrikan and Afrikan American spiritual traditions have been the foundation of Afrikan survival in the West since the beginning of the TransAtlantic Slave Trade in the mid 16th century. In recent times, catastrophic events such as the ongoing conflicts between Israel and Hamas, Russia and Ukraine, instability in the Democratic Republic of Congo and Ethiopia, as well as the humanitarian crisis in Yemen, and issues of race, class, gender, and climate equity in the United States have continued to plague humanity. Amidst these dark times, artists like Dr. Lomax are crucial in reminding us of our shared humanity. The Unity Suite, a composition in 6 movements draws musical inspiration from Dr. Lomax's experiences in the Black church and how music was used to facilitate spiritual transformation in the performers and the congregation allowing them to thrive in the midst of physical, political, economic and psychological terror. Lomax invokes the power of Black sacred music and worship traditions to artfully engage the global challenges humanity must overcome to save itself, the planet, and find a spiritual balance with the cosmos.
I. Sermonic Selection
II. Prayer for Unity
IV. By Any Means Necessary
V. Altar Call
Ensemble: The Urban Art Ensemble
Line up TBD
Edwin Bayard - tenor and soprano saxophones
William Menefield - piano
Dean Hulett - bass
Mark Lomax, II - drums