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The Point presents Esperanza Spalding

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Are you a fan of Esperanza Spalding?

She has expressed concerns that jazz has wandered from its roots, suggesting that jazz has lost its street value and its relevance to “the Black experience to the Black Diaspora and beyond.” She has without a doubt brought attention back to jazz, and has made the art both young and cool. Esperanza Spalding, along with numerous young artists of color, are working to rebirth the Harlem Renaissance and make the arts both accessible and intriguing to young artists of color in Harlem and around the world.

Esperanza Spalding popped on the scene in 2011 when she won the Grammy Award for the Best New Artist, making her the first jazz artist to win the award and making Justin Beiber fans around the world steaming mad. But the furry of the haters only gave more attention to the bassist who was already receiving accolades out of the spotlight.

Esperanza Spalding plays at the Barrymore Theatre on Friday night.

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Soundtrack | Actress | Composer

Esperanza Spalding was born on October 18, 1984 in Portland, Oregon, USA as Esperanza Emily Spalding. She is an actress and composer, known for History of Jazz: Oxygen for the Ears (2012), Zero Gravity Live (2016) and The 84th Annual Academy Awards (2012). See full bio »

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in Portland, Oregon, USA
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Esperanza Spalding plays at the Barrymore Theatre on Friday night.

The Harlem Renaissance was a cultural movement of Black Americans in the 1920s centered around Harlem, NYC and was seen as an explosion of the arts and cultural pride. The movement was a stage for black artists, musicians, actors, and poets, and birthed the legacies of poet Langston Hughes, writer Zora Neal Hurston, and singer Billie Holiday. This time period is often referenced in today’s art world, particularly in fashion editorials, with black models channeling Billie Holiday. One person who has wrapped her essence in the era and has seemlingly brought jazz music to the forefront is Esperanza Spalding.

The Harlem Renaissance was a cultural movement of Black Americans in the 1920s centered around Harlem, NYC and was seen as an explosion of the arts and cultural pride. The movement was a stage for black artists, musicians, actors, and poets, and birthed the legacies of poet Langston Hughes, writer Zora Neal Hurston, and singer Billie Holiday. This time period is often referenced in today’s art world, particularly in fashion editorials, with black models channeling Billie Holiday. One person who has wrapped her essence in the era and has seemlingly brought jazz music to the forefront is Esperanza Spalding.Esperanza was born in Portland, Oregon (over 2,700 miles from Harlem) in a place called King neighborhood. She left high school at the age of 16 after getting her GED. She enrolled on a music scholarship at Portland State University. At the age of 20 she was hired at Berklee College of Music as the youngest instructor to date. But with all her accomplishments, she considered dropping out of music and entering political science when she found herself broke and exhausted. But like those before her, she found inspiration in the words of her mentors.Esperanza Spalding popped on the scene in 2011 when she won the Grammy Award for the Best New Artist, making her the first jazz artist to win the award and making Justin Beiber fans around the world steaming mad. But the furry of the haters only gave more attention to the bassist who was already receiving accolades out of the spotlight.She has expressed concerns that jazz has wandered from its roots, suggesting that jazz has lost its street value and its relevance to “the Black experience to the Black Diaspora and beyond.” She has without a doubt brought attention back to jazz, and has made the art both young and cool. Esperanza Spalding, along with numerous young artists of color, are working to rebirth the Harlem Renaissance and make the arts both accessible and intriguing to young artists of color in Harlem and around the world. Are you a fan of Esperanza Spalding?