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The Apollo and WNYC announce 17th Annual Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Day celebration / The New York Amsterdam News

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The New York Amsterdam News writes….WNYC and The Apollo present the 17th annual Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Day celebration, “MLK–Blueprint for the Culture,” programmed as part of The Apollo’s Uptown Hall series, on Sunday, Jan. 15 at 3 p.m.

Live and in-person for the first time since the pandemic, this annual co-production between two of New York City’s leading media and cultural institutions has become the city’s signature event commemorating the political, cultural, and social legacy of King.

This year’s event, entitled “MLK–Blueprint for the Culture,” explores the relationship between Dr. King and the civil rights movement of the 1960s and contemporary social and civil justice movements. Kai Wright, host of Notes from America – a WNYC Studios’ national call-in radio show and podcast about the unfinished business of our history and its grip on our future – will be joined by Chelsea Miller, activist and co-founder of Freedom March NYC. They will reflect on Nina Simone’s legendary song “Young, Gifted and Black” and focus on how young people are impacting society through activism, engagement, and a commitment to justice.

WQXR’s Terrance McKnight hosts the second half of the program alongside performances by a range of musicians and artists, including the diverse musical collective Harlem Chamber Players, the multi-faceted vocal ensemble Dream Launchers, and American tenor Chauncey Packer, among other musical guests.

LaFontaine Oliver, the new President and CEO of New York Public Radio, and Jonelle Procope, President and CEO of The Apollo, will give opening remarks.

“We are thrilled to partner once again with the historic Apollo Theater to honor Dr. King’s legacy, and are particularly excited to share this event live from the heart of Harlem with audiences across the country and around the globe on radio and digital platforms as well,” said Brenda Williams-Butts, Chief Diversity Officer at New York Public Radio, and co-founder of WNYC’s annual Martin Luther King, Jr. event. “This year, we’re shining a light on young people – celebrating a new generation of activists who are the inheritors of Dr. King’s commitment to fighting unjust laws, racism, poverty, and oppression. We’ll also explore the rich musical legacy of the civil rights era through live musical performances. We’re proud to bring new context and layers each year to the ways Dr. King remains ever relevant to our times.” 

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