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Sunday, February 13 at 10 p.m. – Maya Angelou's Black History Month Special

(Rochester, NY) As part of WXXI's special programming for Black History Month, AM 1370/FM-HD 91.5-2 presents Maya Angelou's Black History Month Special, airing Sunday, February 13 at 10 p.m. Angelou defines Black History as it is embraced in our popular culture. The roots of comedy, along with the common adage, that ‘Blacks laughed to keep from crying' is explored. Comedian Chris Rock also takes listeners on a journey from his beginnings in Brooklyn to Saturday Night Live and beyond. As Rock defines the comedy of our times, Angelou gives listeners the historical perspective from the 30's and 40's. You'll hear about Dusty Fletcher's “Open the Door, Richard” and the brilliance of early comedians who literally set the stage for African American comedy.

Maya Angelou also explores African American films by African American directors with a focus on the work of Lee Daniels, the success of Precious, and how future works of this young director will change dialogue in American Culture.

Then it's time for poetry and the blending of old school and new school when Angelou takes to the stage of the Urban League's 100th Anniversary Celebration with rapper Common. As Angelou recites a stanza of Songs of the Old Ones, Common interprets each stanza in “his preferred language of hip hop.”

As Black History takes place every day, Cornell West and Angelou share stories of their childhood and how love has been expressed in the black community. Then it's time to remember and forward the understanding of civil rights as Angelou shares a story of her relationship with the late great civil right activist Dorothy Height.



WXXI is the essential, life-long educational media resource for the Greater Rochester area. WXXI puts the community first with programming that stimulates and expands thought, inspires the spirit, opens cultural horizons and promotes understanding of diverse community issues. Log on to wxxi.org for more information about our services and programs.