From tours and lectures to film screenings and visiting choirs, Virginia offers a wealth of options to celebrate Black History Month this February, in every corner of the Old Dominion. Here are a few highlights:
Progeny. Art & Design Building at George Mason University, February 1 to 29
Photography exhibit by Deborah Willis—recipient of Guggenheim and MacArthur fellowships and considered one of the nation’s leading historians and curators of African American photography and culture—and son Hank Willis Thomas. CfA.GMU.edu
A Salute to the Tuskegee Airmen, Virginia War Museum, Newport News, February 4, Newport News
Meet the men of the US Army Air Corps who took to the skies while fighting the Axis Powers abroad and segregation at home. Members of the Tuskegee Airmen will be available to discuss artifacts on display from noon to 1 p.m., followed by a viewing of the movie The Tuskegee Airmen. After the movie, guest speakers will relate their experiences while serving in World War II, Korea and Vietnam. WarMuseum.org
Lush Life: The Music of Billy Strayhorn and Duke Ellington, Armstrong Concert Hall, Winchester, February 10, 8 p.m.
The legendary 30-year collaboration between composer/pianist/arranger Billy Strayhorn and famous bandleader Duke Ellington is the focus of this exciting program featuring the duo's most popular hits including "Satin Doll" and "Take the A Train." $5 to $10. ConservatoryPerforms.org
Homecoming, Film Screening, Alexandria Black History Museum, February 11, 18, 25, 1 p.m.
Narrated by Charles S. Dutton, Homecoming chronicles the epic story of African-American farming in the South. Free. AlexBlackHistory.org
Richmond Boy's Choir, Children's Museum of Richmond, February 11, 1 p.m.
The Richmond Boys Choir showcase African culture and history through song at the Children's Museum of Richmond. C-MoR.org
African-American Film Fest. Virginia War Musem
February 11: Liberators: Fighting on Two Fronts in World War II—documentray telling the story of African-American battalions in World War II, focusing on the actions of the 761st, which helped spearhead Patton's Third Army and liberated Nazi concentration camps.
February 18: Glory, starring Denzel Washington, Morgan Freeman, and Matthew Broderick.
February 25: Buffalo Soldiers, starring Danny Glover
$6 adult, $5 senior citizen & active duty military w/ ID, $4 per child ages up to age 18, free for children under 7. WarMuseum.org
Voices of Freedom. The Mariner's Museuem, Newport News, February 18
Actors portray Harriet Tubman, James Daniels Gardner and Elizabeth Bowser to tell their stories. MarinersMuseum.org
Soweto Gospel Choir, George Mason University's Center for the Arts, Fairfax, February 19, 4 p.m.
The Grammy Award-winning South African Gospel choir perform. $22, $36, $44. Limited Student Tickets Available on February 7. SowetoGospelChoir.com
Freedom Train, Willett Hall, Portsmouth, February 23
The story of Harriet Tubman told in dance, dialogue, mime and music. 9:45 a.m. and 11:45 a.m. Willett Hall. $7.50. WillettHall.com
Locomotion, Sandler Center, Virginia Beach, February 28
Award-winning novelist Jacqueline Woodson has adapted her book, Locomotion—about an 11-year old boy's journey from tragedy to hope—into a play. (Recommended for Ages 9+) SandlerCenter.org