Thursday, May 11, 2017

Wanda's Picks, Wednesday, May 10, 2017

This is a black arts and culture site. We will be exploring the African Diaspora via the writing, performance, both musical and theatrical (film and stage), as well as the visual arts of Africans in the Diaspora and those influenced by these aesthetic forms of expression. I am interested in the political and social ramifications of art on society, specifically movements supported by these artists and their forbearers. It is my claim that the artists are the true revolutionaries, their work honest and filled with raw unedited passion. They are our true heroes. Ashay!

Ayori Selassie

1. Ayori Selassie
Selfpreneur and Salesforce

Ayori Selassie joins us to talk about "A Taste of Oakland" and the Tech Playground featured there, this weekend, May 13, 12-6 p.m.

Ms. Selassie is the creator of Life Model Design, a methodology used to solve complex life problems using design thinking. As the inventor of Life Model Canvas® (a framework to design your life), Selassie is a globally recognized thought leader, entrepreneur, philanthropist and innovator. Selassie currently works as a Product Marketing Manager on Einstein at Salesforce delivering artificial intelligence for everyone. Selassie leverages over eighteen years of software engineering, technology and consulting experience serving as a trusted adviser for startups and medium sized businesses.

Alo Billingslea, director.
Photo: Paul Kuroda

2. Aldo Billingslea, director, of 
Samm-Art Williams's Home, at Lorraine Hansberry Theatre, Friday, May 12, 7 p.m. in the Burial Clay Theatre, 762 Fulton Street in San Francisco. Home, at Lorraine Hansberry Theatre, Friday, May 12, 7 p.m. in the Burial Clay Theatre, 762 Fulton Street in San Francisco. Aldo Billingslea, “HOME” Director, has mounted full productions of Lorraine Hansberry Theatre’s, A Raisin in the Sun for Pear Avenue Theatre and Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream for the Goodwill Shakespeare Company in Summerland, British Columbia. At Santa Clara he has directed Shakespeare’s Coriolanus, Love’s Labours Lost, and A Midsummer Night’s Dream along with the Shadowbox, The Sign in Sidney Brustein’s Window, The Odd Couple, The Good Doctor and Pentecost and Brian Thorstenson’s Welcome to Claradise. As an actor Aldo has performed at TheatreWorks, Marin Theatre Company, the Aurora Theatre, the Magic Theatre, A.C.T., and with Shakespeare Festivals of: Arabia, California, Dallas, Marin, Oregon, Santa Cruz, and Utah

Akubundu Amazu-Lott
For tickets and information.

3. Akubundu Amazu-Lott, All African Peoples Revolutionary Party, joins us to speak about African Liberation Day, May 27, 2017, 11-5 at Tassaferonga Park. Theme: "African Youth Organizing Against All Settler and Neo-Colonial Regimes: From DRC (Congo), to Standing Rock and Palestine!"

As a youth living in Los Angeles, CA, Akubundu Amazu-Lott experienced first hand being profiled by the police. On at least a half dozen occasions he was pulled over at gun-point by the LAPD. This experience contributed to his understanding that African people in America were treated as second-class citizens.  He made his way out of Los Angeles to San Jose State University. There he participated in sports (football) and received his B.S. in Business Administration and his Master of Urban Planning.

As an undergraduate student athlete he experienced racism on the field and in the classroom.  His resolve to change the situation of African People in particular and humanity in general lead him to join several progressive organizations including the Black Student Union (SJSU) and the Pan African Student Collective. He was introduced to and joined the All-African People’s Revolutionary Party (AAPRP) in 1979 and is currently a member of the Central Committee. It is through his extensive study of Pan-Africanism and the struggles of oppressed people globally that he remains motivated to work for positive change. 

He was formerly an adjunct professor at San Jose State University in the African-American Studies Department. He taught classes on The African/Black Family, Economic Issues in the African-American Community, MLK and the Civil Rights Movement, Urban Policy and Inner City Residents, and more. Additionally, he has been a guest speaker on numerous university campuses throughout California. He has lead  groups of students to Haiti, Belize and most recently Cuba to meet with grass-root organizations. This life changing experience has lead to continued work to change U.S. policy in Haiti, as well as an ongoing working relationship with groups in Haiti. 


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