Tent Revival: A Black LGBTQ Poetics, Performance, Prophetics, & House Music Ritual
August 25 - 27, 2017
Inaugural Tent Revival
August 25 -August 27, 2017
Rebuking 2017's Hurricane Harvey saying, to the wind and unto the sea, "Peace, be still. " And the wind ceased, and there was a great calm. Actually, we got rained out one night, but we take credit for making the Orisha, the ancestors, the goddesses, the saints and that great cloud of house music witnesses cry. And we held a LGBTQ Queer Arts Revival “Service” Of Poetry, Church, Performance, Community, Divinity, Gospel House Music And Storytelling.
Now, more than ever, I thought, we need to participate in creative and “Prophetic Placemaking” to understand the ways in which the arts and the “spirit of our communities” are being displaced. How do we “ground” in community, practices and spaces, that are safe from gentrifying and political forces? "Tent Revival" was organized and curated to pay tribute to the black prophetic and church traditions, the black art traditions, and the black queer arts traditions that have operated within and through both. This “Revival Service”, explored these questions by gathering together black queer operators and movers of the Theopoetic, the Theatrical, the Scholarly, the Journalistic, the Creative, and the Prophetic.
The Revival and Festival brought together academic, scholarly, theological, cosmological, community, poetry and public theologies, working in the/and for the intersection of community-based arts and the divine. This performance arts festival was part church service, part open practice, part conjure, ceremony and tarry, moving through playwriting, poetry, sermonic expression, song and performance.
Confirmed Speakers, Tellers, Testimonialists, Prophets and Prophetesses, Poets, Performers, Thought Leaders, Magic Makers, Seers, Abolitionists, and Joy Bringers included local and national legends:
Omi O. Jones
Alexis Pauline Gumbs
Julia Sangodare Roxanne Wallace
Gbeda Tonya Lyles
DJ Jam E.Z.
Dora Silva Santana
Marvin K. White
Lyndon K. Gill
E. Patrick Johnson
The centering of this festival in the black church tradition, reminds us that when given space to operate within community, spirit– ancestral knowledge, environmental wisdom, community lessons, indigenous practices) is inherently strategic and allows new insight, new ideas, new affirmation and new possibilities to emerge. Oh and yes, Joy emerges and reemerges.
Black queer arts. Amen. Poetry service. Amen. Church. Amen. Theater. Amen. Performance. Amen. Divinity. Amen. Orisha. Amen. Storytelling. Amen. Frankie Knuckles. Amen. Levitations. Aché and Honey Boom!
For more information about bringing a "Tent Revival" to your city, call me here, on the mainline, and tell me what you want.