Melissa Ross: Harlem of the South

June 29, 2016 0 comments Open printer friendly version of this article Print Article

Darryl Reuben Hall and Kenyada Williams of Stage Aurora Theatrical company join Melissa Ross to talk about Harlem of the South, a musical about the surprisingly star-studded history of the La Villa neighborhood of Jacksonville. Check out the interview after the jump!

First Coast Connect videos produced by
Starring Melissa Ross, Darryl Reuben Hall, and Kenyada Williams
Shot and Edited by Derrick Allen Dillinger
In cooperation with WJCT

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Stage Aurora Theatrical Company presents HARLEM OF THE SOUTH: Duke, Ella, and Cab! with poetry by James Weldon Johnson is a song and dance musical extravaganza reflecting the vibrant 1920s and 30s Jacksonville LaVilla district for FOUR performances in downtown Jacksonville!

Harlem Renaissance icons Duke Ellington, Ella Fitzgerald, Cab Calloway, and Jacksonville’s very own James Weldon Johnson toured the South making Jacksonville one of the stops.

"LaVilla and the Harlem Renaissance, Harlem of the South, represents a significant moment in time for Arts and culture in America. When we tell the stories and make sure that the epic art, jazz and city-building history of one of the most culture-rich places on earth is told far and wide, we garner the due respect for the history of the city-turned-district not only in our community but eventually world wide. It's that significant. " said Cultural Council of Greater Jacksonville President Tony Allegretti.

“Harlem of the South: Duke, Ella, and Cab! will also include dynamic singers, dance-a-longs, and audience participation,” said Director Darryl Reuben Hall.

The (4) Locations and times are as follows:
Performance: June 16, The Volstead @ 7pm
Performance: Sunday, June 19, Jacksonville Public Library Main Branch @3pm
Performance: Hemming Plaza (TBA)
Performance: December 8, The Volstead, Downtown @ 7pm

All performances are free and open to the public.

HARLEM OF THE SOUTH: The Duke, Ella, James, and Cab! is sponsored in part by the NEA, FL Division of Cultural Affairs, Spark Grant, Cultural Council of Greater Jacksonville, Florida Blue, Actors’ Equity Association.

For more information, please call Stage Aurora Theatrical Company at (904) 765-7373 or visit us online at

Join the conversation:
Call: (904) 549-2937 (Note: This line is only active during the program, 9:00-10:00 a.m.)
Tweet: @MelissainJax
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Melissa Ross photo by Toni Smailagic