Philadelphia’s rich, diverse history thrives this month with lively cultural celebrations for Black History Month. There are plenty of engaging events happening to give fresh ways to learn and experience this vital part of American history. From photography exhibits to interactive exhibits to nights at the theater, here’s a roundup of things to check out in the city for Black History Month.
Shawn Theodore’s "Church of Broken Pieces"
African American Museum in Philadelphia
701 Arch St.
Theodore’s exhibit is a cultivation of contemporary street photography merged with African-American folk painting and the rich African-American tradition of quilt making. The collection documents the corporeal elements of black neighborhoods in flux to create a visual language which conveys the spirit, rich cultures, histories and the present course of black life. "Church of Broken Pieces" is open now and runs through April 2.
African American History Month at the National Constitution Center
525 Arch St.
The National Constitution Center is offering plenty of interactive exhibits and classrooms for visitors to experience. The "Breaking Barriers" show examines the lives of Thurgood Marshall, Bessie Coleman, Jackie Robinson and other groundbreaking African-Americans throughout history. "Decoding the Document" is a workshop that takes a closer look at the Emancipation Proclamation. There’s also a self-guided tour and a giant game board to test your African-American history knowledge.
InterAct Theater Company Presents: “Marcus/Emma”
The Proscenium Theatre
302 S. Hicks St.
InterAct Theater Company kicks off its 2017 season with the poignant dark comedy debut of “Marcus/Emma,” directed by Mary Tuomanen. The play takes the subversive political visions of radical activists Marcus Garvey (Akeem Davis) and Emma Goldman (Susan Riley Stevens) and twists them around today’s critical themes of race, gender, sexuality, capitalism and culture. The show is running now through Feb. 12.
True Blues: Corey Harris & Eric Bibb
Harold Prince Theater
1412 Chestnut St.
Former New Orleans street performer Corey Harris and gospel and soul guitarist Eric Bobb come together to bring an uplifting evening of music and conversation to Prince Theater.
True Blues chronicles the living culture of the blues in an uplifting evening of music and conversation. Hosted by Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts, the show hits Prince Theater Feb. 26.
Black History Untold: Joy at WHYY
150 N. Sixth St.
Close out Black History Month in style with a night of live entertainment, panel discussions and cocktails as Philadelphia Media Network and WHYY host the collaborative event on Feb. 28. The program will feature African-American community leaders to discuss happiness, co-moderated by Philadelphia Inquirer features reporter Sofiya Ballin and James Peterson, host of WHYY podcast “The Remix.”