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Portland Jazz Composers Ensemble "Maxville to Vanport"

Live At The Tower

This event was rescheduled from May 7, 2020. Please note: all tickets have been transferred to the new date. Please reach out to the Box Office with any questions info@towertheatre.org or 541-317-0700. 

We hope you recognize the profound impact this event ban will have on the staff, crew and operations of the nonprofit Tower Theatre Foundation. If you are unable to attend the new date, rather than a refund, please consider one of these ways to help sustain the performing arts during this difficult time:

  • Donate the price of your unused tickets as a tax-deductible gift to the Tower

  • Apply the ticket amount as credit to your account or exchange for a future program

  • Purchase a Tower membership

  • Text Tower80 to 44321 with a special donation

 

Tickets:  Reserved Seating $17 - $27 (plus historic preservation fee) 

“Maxville to Vanport” is a multimedia concert of songs and short films with live music performed by the Portland Jazz Composers Ensemble featuring vocalist Marilyn Keller. It tells the story of two historic blue collar Oregon towns with a special focus on the African American Oregonians that made them unique. With a joyful score of jazz, blues, R&B, and gospel-inspired music with music by Ezra Weiss, text by Renee Mitchell, video by Kalimah Abioto, and historical consultation by Gwendolyn Trice of Maxville Heritage Interpretive Center created in a community-guided process in 2018, this project celebrates a little-known part of Oregon’s history.

Maxville, a logging town built in 1923 in Wallowa County, and Vanport, built in 1942 just north of Portland for shipyard workers, were multicultural communities that housed workforces with significant African American and immigrant populations at a time when many Oregonians were openly hostile to them. From Maxville to Vanport looks honestly at the prejudice these people faced and celebrates their resilience, courage, and important contributions to Oregon. It tells stories of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness in the face of remarkable adversity; stories that deserve to be better understood by all Oregonians.

“The hardship and joys of this period of Oregon’s history, as viewed through the eyes of its earliest Black citizens, informs the work of Weiss and Mitchell. The music is austere and stately, evoking the landscape of the eastern part of the state and the period when Portland was more spacious.”
– Robert Ham, Portland Mercury, May 23, 2018

 

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