Music from the African Diaspora to be performed July 25; local singers participate


Queen Ann Nzinga Center, Inc. presents its annual Music from the African Diaspora concert at 7 p.m. on July 25 at the Theater for the Performing Arts at the Learning Corridor in Hartford.

Nzinga’s Daughters headlines the show, and other performers are Third Tabernacle Choir, Nzinga’s Daughters R&B Band, Changes, Relentless, Crystal Blue Project and the world-renowned soul singer Betty Harris. David Mayes of Plainville, who mentors young vocalists in the Queen Ann Nzinga Center programs, will perform a solo. The free concert is geared to all ages, and children are welcome.

“We create a place for people to come together to sing, dance and experience the music. We are all transformed – the artists, the audience, the community, the world. The show invites active audience participation,” said Dayna R. Snell, L.C.S.W., the concert’s musical director. “Everyone wants in and we want everyone to be a part of this good time.”

This year, concert goers will enjoy a preview of Betty Harris performing with back-up singers she has mentored from the Queen Ann Nzinga Center’s Watoto program. Two of them will be traveling to Spain this summer to perform with Harris at the Euro Ye Ye soul music festival, where Harris is the headliner. Aaleya Hardy, 18, of Bristol, Sabrina Jones, 12, of East Hartford, and Dillyn Caruso, 18, of Plainville, will perform at the Music from the African Diaspora concert with Harris; and Hardy and Savannah Freitas, 16, of Plainville, will join Harris on stage at the four-day festival, along with Snell, executive director of the Queen Ann Nzinga Center.

Doors to the theater at 359 Washington St. open at 6 p.m., and prior to the concert, artwork and photography will be sold at a silent auction to benefit the Queen Ann Nzinga Center’s youth arts and enrichment programs. For information, contact Queen Ann Nzinga Center at or 860-229-8389.