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Event Details

Mon, June 10, 2024

19:00 – 22:00

Villa La Pietra
Via Bolognese, 120
50139 Florence, Italy

June 11 - The Recovery Plan
RSVP required as spaces are limited

A conference, concert, screening and performance

NYU Florence in collaboration with The Recovery Plan

Justin Randolph Thompson
Jason Thompson
Shana L. Redmond
Antonella Bundu
Mackda Ghebremariam Tesfau
Jemma RobinThompson
Bradly Dever Treadaway
Dudu Kouate

This two-day event brings together artistic, activist and academic framings of the life and legacy of Paul L. Robeson. The screening of a series of performance-based videos, a conversation series, a concert and a film premiere accompanied by a live sound performance make up this multifaceted convening. The program is designed to encompass two evenings of reflection and celebration of the global facing socio-political dimensions of Robeson, his vision of art as a tool for social change and the need for a critical reflection on this unsung figure within the Italian context. Civil Rights and labor activist, athlete, actor, singer and voice for change are all descriptors of this incredible historic figure. The work and research of Justin Randolph Thompson, spanning 15 years of performance and sculptural works that engage this legacy take us from Peekskill NY (Thompson’s birthplace and the site of the Peekskill Riots of 1949) to Madrid and on through Marrakech.

June 10 – Villa La Pietra (Via Bolognese, 120)

7:00 – 7:30 PM – Opening Remarks and welcome from Justin Randolph Thompson.
Keynote from Shana L. Redmond, author of Everything Man: The Form and Function of Paul Robeson

7:30 – 8:00 PM – Performing Resistance. Screening of performance-based videos with introduction by videographer Bradly Dever Treadaway:
           20 Voices for Robeson (2015 Newark, NJ, USA)
           Brutus Jones (2013 Queens, NY, USA)
           Hide Beaters (2014 Madrid, Spain)
           Teach Me to Read Your History (2021 Marrakech, Morocco)

8:00 – 8:30 PM – Refreshments

8:30 – 9:00 PM – Robeson, contemporary artistic production and socio-political continuities. Conversation with Shana L. Redmond , Justin Randolph Thompson and Jason Thompson moderated by Mackda Ghebremariam Tesfaù.

9:00 -10:00 pm – Voicings for Robeson: Absenting Natural Breath. Concert with Jason Thompson and Dudù Kouate



June 11 – The Recovery Plan

7:00 – 7:20 PM – Lecture
Opening Remarks and welcome Justin Randolph Thompson
Florence: Antifascism, labor and politics, Antonella Bundu.

7:20 – 7:40 PM – Lecture
Take Thy Stand, a thesis on the socio-political implications of Robeson’s performance of Othello, Jemma Robin Thompson.

7:40 – 8:00 PM – Lecture
Legacy work and the intersection of arts and activism. Conversation with Jemma Robin Thompson, Bradly Dever Treadaway, and Antonella Bundu moderated by Justin Randolph Thompson.

8:00 -8:30 PM – Refreshments

8:30 – 9:15 PM – Screening

Performing Resistance. Screening of performance-based video with intro by videographer Bradly Dever Treadaway: Fit the Battle (2014 Peekskill, NY, USA)

9:30 – 10:00 PM – Mountains, Rivers and Deserts,  by Justin Randolph Thompson: Film première and performance with live sound by SADI and Dudù Kouate

RSVP for June 11: