When Actor / Director Rome Neal took on Laurence Holder’s one-man play “Monk”, playing the legendary pianist / composer, it was the start of not only a long-running theatrical role, but of a new artistic role in Neal’s life: jazz impresario. Inspired by the play to take up singing, he became a regular at jam sessions and founded Rome Neal’s Banana Puddin’ Jazz at the legendary Nuyorican Poets’ Cafe. In the twenty years since its founding, this series has hosted a wide variety of jazz greats, including Dee Dee Bridgwater, Randy Weston, Onaje Allan Gumbs, Amiri Baraka, Barry Harris, and Samara Joy among scores of others. Awarded the 2022 Audelco Lifetime Achievement Award for his accomplishments in Black Theatre, Rome’s thoughtful production and commanding stage presence have become a fixture in the NYC jazz world.
This event will stream on the Jazz Foundation and Jazz Museum Facebook pages and the Museum YouTube Channel.
This project is supported in part by an award from the National Endowment for the Arts, the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of the Office of the Governor and the New York State Legislature and by public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council and by the Howard Gilman Foundation.
National Jazz Museum in Harlem
We are your go-to venue for off-site meetings, receptions, film screenings, workshops, networking events, socials and more. Located in the heart of Central Harlem’s thriving culinary and entertainment district, The National Jazz Museum in Harlem is the perfect place to hold your next gathering.