“Remember,” a short film by Latecia Delores Wilson

Category: Event Calendar

  • Tuesday, Oct 4, 2022 6 p.m.

Many don’t realize that Howard Street was once a booming Black business and jazz district.  Akron was midway between New York City and Chicago and became a stopping point for many of the nation’s jazz legends between 1930-1950.  The district was home to 60-70 jazz clubs at one time, barber shops, photography studios and doctors’ offices.  The decline of the rubber industry and the building of the Innerbelt in the 1970’s contributed to breaking up what was left of the neighborhoods and divided the city between black and white residents.

Latecia Delores Wilson is a Cleveland-based performance artist.  Her work involves community-input and building a connection between their stories with the African diaspora.  Her intention is to keep sacred memories alive with oral history, traditional song and movement overlay with stories and poems.

Her residency work is summarized with the following statement: 

“Images of the past blend with the present resurfacing memories embedded in place in the short film REMEMBERED. What once was begs to be remembered and the truth of what took place exposed. Howard Street was a mecca in Akron for black businesses and artists. Urban development bulldozed black success and ownership, nearly erasing the memories of George Matthews, Cab Calloway, Ella Fitzgerald and hundreds of Akron families. This visual is a reminder of what was, what is and what can be; honoring the black excellence of Howard Street and the black excellence systematically erased throughout.”

Remembered will be screened at the University of Akron’s Myers School of Art Auditorium on Tuesday, October 4th at 6pm.  There will be a Q&A session following the short film.   Please email Christine Ries with any questions at christine@akronsoultrain.org.