MR. BELAFONTE Concert
A Loving Celebration of a Living Legend.
Get ready for an inspiring, joyful, heartfelt evening from the music stage of one of the most beloved legends of our time. The performing family of Harry Belafonte is coming together again to celebrate this pivotal Birthday and to reflect on life on the road with Harry. Join us for a special and rare evening of loving celebration concert in appreciation of what it is to be an artist, a humanitarian, an activist for human dignity and justice.
Richard Cummings, Jr (Music Director/Piano)
Ty Stephens (International award winning artist)
Sharon K Brooks
Neil Clarke (Percussion)
Morris Goldberg (Flute /Saxophone)
Sipho Kunene (Drums)
Dan Carillo (Guitar)
Chulo Gatewood (Bass)
PLEASE NOTE: Harry Belafonte may not be able to attend, but with Harry we never know.
Richard Ainsworth Cummings (Music Director):
*(Belafonte music director for 17 years)
At the age of five years, Richard was given his first piano and music theory lessons by his grandmother, Maude Bascome Cummings Taylor, renowned piano teacher and organist/choirmaster of Cornerstone Baptist Church, in Brooklyn, N.Y.
After four years of lessons, Richard entered New York’s, Juilliard Preparatory School of Music, where he studied piano for four years under the Russian pianist,
In 1973, after majoring in piano and composition at the University of Detroit and Marygrove College, he began his professional music career with various local groups,
and eclectic ensembles in New York City and along the U.S. eastern seaboard.
Since then, his talents have been visited upon such luminous artists as:
Noel Pointer, Jon Lucien, Harry Belafonte, Letta Mbulu, Dianne Reeves, Hugh Masekela, Wayne Shorter, Zubin Mehta, George C. Wolfe, Melvin Van Peebles and a host of other wonderful performers.
Award-winning Singer/Songwriter, Entertainer/Recording Artist (Grand Prize Winner Jazzmobile/Anheuser-Busch Solo Jazz Vocalist Competition, NYC, 2006, and First Place Winner R&B/Blues Category of the International Songwriting Competition 2002, for “Somethin’ Strange”), co-writer and original cast of “From My Hometown”; co-writer/Production, Choreographer and Star of the long-running “Shades Of Harlem” revue; and Co-writer/Production, Choreographer in the new Off-Broadway hit “On Kentucky Avenue”. Ty has appeared on Broadway in “Sophisticated Ladies” (with Gregory Hines and Phyllis Hyman) and “Marilyn, An American Fable”. Recorded/performed with Houston Person, Harry Belafonte, Gregory Hines, Phyllis Hyman, Toshi Kubota, Patti Austin, Jeffrey Osborne, Phoebe Snow, Smokey Robinson, Jon Hendricks, Liza Minnelli and Natalie Cole, Ledisi, Savion Glover, and more. With his band SoulJaazz, he has opened for Stevie Wonder, Tony Bennett, Janet Jackson, Carlos Santana, Steely Dan, Eric Clapton, Alicia Keys, and Celine Dion, and many more.