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Ella Tribute in SF

The life and music of Ella Fitzgerald (pictured) will be feted next week as part of the second annual San Francisco Black History Month Celebration, an event presented by SF Noir, a Bay Area black arts and culture organization. The tribute, which will feature Bay Area singer Ledisi backed by the Marcus Shelby Jazz Orchestra, takes place Feb. 21 at the Palace of Fine Arts Theatre, along with movie presentations and spoken word performances. And another day of celebration events, including a lecture and film series on hip hop culture, follows on Feb. 22 at Rasselas Jazz Club in the Fillmore. A schedule of planned events for both days follows below.

Tickets for the Palace of Fine Arts Gala are $30 for Gold Circle seating, $25 for general admission seating in advance or $30 at the door and can be purchased at:,, or at these San Francisco locations: City Box Office or Marcus Book Stores in San Francisco and the East Bay. Tickets for Hip Hop: A World View and the 21st Century Negro Project at Rasselas Jazz Club are $10 and are available on or at the door the night of the show. Ticket prices include admission to after parties. For more information, visit

February 21, Palace of Fine Arts:

85th Anniversary Tribute to Ella Fitzgerald featuring a performance by Bay Area singer Ledisi backed by the 15-piece Marcus Shelby Jazz Orchestra.

Screening of the film What Wouldn’t Jesus Do?, directed by Ron J. Emelle, What Wouldn’t Jesus Do? looks at how Jesus might interpret our modern day experiences.

June Jordan: The Words Are In Our Hearts-A tribute to the most published African American author and Professor of Black Studies at Cal Berkeley who passed away last summer from breast cancer, featuring a video montage dedication and performances by spoken word artists Rhodessa Jones, Uchechi and Andre Santos, co-presented with the AfroSolo Theatre Company.

The OG and the B-Boy: A truncated version of Cultural Odyssey’s stage exploration of the intergenerational divide within the black community.

Jazz & More: Opening reception in the Palace of Fine Arts lobby with the Mark Wright Trio and complimentary Champagne, Wine, Spirits and catered food.

February 22, Rasselas Jazz Club:

Hip Hop: A World View-A lecture and video series that examines Hip Hop and its continued influence on cultures around the world, specifically France, Italy and Germany. Co-presented with Alliance Francaise, Istituto Italiano di Cultura and Goethe Institut, it will feature lectures from Ahmed Kamara (Alliance Francaise), Arndt Peltner (Goethe Institut and host of Radio Goethe on KUSF) and Luciano Chessa PhD (Istituto Italiano di Cultura) and see videos of hip hop bands from those countries to offer the audience a birds-eye view of how deep hip hop culture has permeated the fabric of not only America culture, but cultures abroad as well.

The 21st Century Negro-A live presentation of the new project from young tenor saxophonist Howard Wiley.

Special guest performances, guest hosts, after parties and more.

Originally Published