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Somi, Jesse Alick and Toru Dodo

Production Photo of Theater Residency

Production Photo of Theater Residency

Production Photo of Theater Residency

Production Photo of Theater Residency

Production Photo of Theater Residency

Bio: Born in Illinois to immigrants from Rwanda and Uganda, acclaimed vocalist & songwriter Somi has built a career of transatlantic sonicism and storytelling.  Petite Afrique Somi's sophomore effort for Sony Music, is a daring, relevant, refashioning of what "jazz" and "African music" mean - both singularly and to each other.  The album which was tells the story of African immigrants in the midst of a gentrified Harlem, New York. It won a 2018 NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Jazz Album and features special guest Aloe Blacc,  a timely Petite Afrique in the highly anticipated follow-up to Somi's last chart-topping album and major label debut The Lagos Music Salon, which was inspired by an 18-month creative sabbatical in Lagos, Nigeria and features special guests Angelique Kidjo and Common and landed at #1 on US Jazz charts.  Both albums straddle the worlds of African jazz, soul, and pop with a newfound ease and a voice that Vogue Magazine simply calls “Superb!”

Jesse Cameron Alick is a poet, playwright, producer, and Zen Master. Jesse is the Literary Manager at the Public Theater, where he manages the flow of plays in and out of the building, reads and sees a very high volume of plays, and feeds plays into the Public’s season pipeline. He runs the Emerging Writers Group and manages such programs as New Work Now and Public Studio, while also providing dramaturgical support and serving as an artist liaison. Outside the Public, Jesse is also a freelance journalist and essayist. Jesse studied writing with playwright Adrienne Kennedy and has taught for the theater department at Lewis and Clark College

Toru Dodo is a Tokyo-born pianist, composer and arranger who has lived in NYC since 1998. He has been Somi's long time music collaborator since 2004. One of New York's most in-demand sideman, Dodo has worked with jazz luminaries such as Kenny Garrett, Benny Golson and Curtis Fuller. Currently, he has been frequently performing with notable singers such as Nicole Henry, Alicia Olatuja and Laurin Talese. He also can be heard at the off-broadway show "Sleep No More.”

Residency Public Sharing: 6/30/18