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Musician. Poet. Teacher. Mystic. Pioneer of Afro-Futurism Jazz. These words only begin to describe the deeply compelling artist known as Sun Ra (1914-1993). Over the course of his lifetime Sun Ra and his “Arkestra” released more than forty studio albums and mesmerized live audiences with a sonic and visual mélange informed by Ancient Egypt and Science Fiction. Born in Alabama, Sun Ra’s musical career took shape in Chicago and New York. In 1968 he relocated to the Germantown section of Philadelphia, which would serve as the base of operations for the Arkestra for decades to come. As a result, his musical influence continues to thrive in and across the city. The Kislak Center has recently acquired two important collections that will help scholars to better understand Sun Ra’s legacy. Civic Engagement Curator Samantha Hill and Kislak Center Director Sean Quimby will talk about these acquisitions and their potential for research, teaching, and outreach. 


Image:  Sun Ra Intergalactic Infinity Arkestra at Happy Medium, Saturday & Sunday September 9 & 10, [1972]. Offset printed poster advertising show, printed both sides, recto in black ink and verso in blue ink with ink smear across top of sheet. 12 x 16 in. Chicago, IL: El Saturn Research, 1972.  

Registration is required. There are 69 seats available.

Friday, October 20, 2023
12:00pm - 1:00pm
Van Pelt-Dietrich Library Center
Kislak, Lecture

Event Organizer

Lynne Farrington
From the Kislak Stacks: Samantha Hill and Sean Quimby, Collecting Sun Ra, Pioneer of Afro-Futurism Jazz