Like countless creative collaborations, the one between the American writers Zora Neale Hurston and Langston Hughes was fruitful but ultimately ended in acrimony.
On Friday at 7 pm, Award-winning WQXR radio host Terrance McKnight, who recently finished a radio documentary exploring Langston’s commonly overlooked musical endeavors, takes us on a multimedia journey to the Harlem Renaissance, the burgeoning cultural era for African Americans that was the setting for Zora and Langston’s ill-fated partnership.
Excerpts from Mule Bone – a comedy about African American life that Hurston and Hughes began writing in 1930, but that Hurston submitted for copyright as the sole writer – will be read. The copy of this play in the Langston Hughes papers at Yale University has a hand-written notation by Hughes: “This play was never done because the authors fell out.”
The evening will also include musical presentations by pianist Randy Weston, pianist Jim Davis, bass Kevin Maynor, Song of Solomon Chorus and vocalist Maritri Garrett as well as conversation with Marc Primus, curator and historian.