Blog post

As Quiet As It’s Kept Photography Installation: We Are Here, Robyn Twomey, Photographer

An exploration of home, community service and legacy.


As Quiet As It’s Kept photographer Robyn Twomey.

We Are Here” centers images and stories of long-time Bed-Stuy residents, cementing their place as neighborhood icons in the name of resilience and permanence.  It features photographs by Robyn Twomey and interviews by Monica L. Williams. We would print life size photos of each interview participant.

Robyn Twomey is an international freelance photographer, mother of two and former Bed-Stuy gentrifier. Her work has been exhibited at the Luggage Store Gallery, The Patricia Sweetow Gallery, SF Camerawork and the SF Arts Commission. Her documentary portraiture stories are her way to open our personal understanding of one another and dare a deeper human connection. 

Bailey’s Cafe presents As Quiet As It’s Kept (AQAIK), a multi-discipline performance installation based on the stories of veterans of color and their role in a changing community under the artistic direction of Monica L. Williams in collaboration with artists from various genres.

#WeAreHere #RobynTwomey #AsQuietAsItsKept #AQAIK #BaileysCafe #MAPFund #NYCCouncil #NYCDCA

We Are Here – The Photoville FENCE

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As Quiet As It’s Kept Theater Installation: Homeward, a Play in Two Acts by Anna Pond

An exploration of home, community service and legacy.


As Quiet As It’s Kept playwright Anna Pond.

An excerpt from “Homeward” will be performed Veterans Day Nov. 11
featuring Greg Alvarez Reid followed by a conversation with Black male veterans. 8 PM ET Bailey’s Café YouTube Channel

Preceded by special Veterans Day set with DJ Reborn on Zoom

A flier showing illustrated red, yellow and blue figures in a neighborhood scene, with blue and yellow lettering announcing the Veteran's Day event for As Quiet As It's Kept.
Click here for DJ Reborn’s 7pm set: https://us02web.zoom.us/j/2594277542

Since Vietnam, Rufus Jefferson has felt lost, PTSD crippling his interactions with those he loves. Everyone, including his beloved wife and best friend, think a near-death experience in war caused his recurring trauma. For most of his life he keeps secret how his white commanding officer actions resulting in Rufus’ less-than-honorable discharge traumatized him, and why he doesn’t tell anyone the truth. It’s not until his daughter convinces him to testify to his story and fight the “bad paper” symbolizing his dishonor that he finds his way home.

Anna started her acting career in Los Angeles as a member of the award winning City Garage theater company. After a quick pass through Boston’s theater scene, she made her way to NYC where she joined the Michael Chekhov Theatre Company and performed across the city in classical to contemporary plays. 

More recently, Anna has focused on producing and writing. With two other actresses, she formed Working Girls Productions, a production company dedicated to expanding works for female actresses by presenting women in roles written for men. With another actor colleague, Anna formed Lamb Pond Productions to produce a show as a fundraiser to benefit the National Multiple Sclerosis Society.

Anna is grateful to be part of AQAIK, and couldn’t have written Homeward without the creative guidance and support of Monica Williams. In addition to Homeward, Anna is working on a novel, and another play focused on race justice issues.

Performer: Greg Alverez Reid can be seen in the upcoming HBO Special Event BETWEEN THE WORLD AND ME. He recently appeared In the HBO Documentary: “The Apollo”. His theatre credits consist of Off-Broadway, numerous Regional Theatre and renowned Arts Centers like the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in his native Washington, DC. Notable performances include FENCES directed by Phylicia Rashad and the inaugural stage productions of BETWEEN THE WORLD AND ME directed by Kamilah Forbes. Greg has collaborated with some amazing arts organizations like Hi-Arts, NAACP Hollywood Bureau, Sundance Theatre Lab, KCTYA and [email protected] and helped to produce content for HBO, VH1, One Foot Productions, Seachange Entertainment, MTV, Logo and NBC. He is a proud graduate of the Illustrious Howard University and the British American Drama Academy at Oxford University.

Guest Veteran: Retired Pvt. Herbert Sweat, RA12764315. U.S. Army 173rd Airborne Brigade Combat Team. Vietnam 1967-68. Airborne Combat Infantry Badge.

Guest Veteran: Retired Pvt. Roger Omar Salaam. U.S. Army 101st Airborne Division 3/306 Infantry. Phan Thiết, Vietnam.

Bailey’s Cafe presents As Quiet As It’s Kept (AQAIK), a multi-discipline performance installation based on the stories of veterans of color and their role in a changing community under the artistic direction of Monica L. Williams in collaboration with artists from various genres.

#Homeward #APlayInTwoActs #AnnaPond #AsQuietAsItsKept #AQAIK #BaileysCafe #MAPFund #NYCCouncil #NYCDCA

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As Quiet As It’s Kept Digital Installation: Displaced: Jake’s Home, Zoe Flowers, Installation Artist

An exploration of home, community service and legacy.


As Quiet As It’s Kept digital installation artist Zoë Flowers.

Our story travels through time and space. We meet Jake on a stoop in Bed-Stuy. He owns the block, and everybody knows that. He recounts his life, his experiences, and the impact of gentrification without ever naming it. 

This installation seeks to answer: What happens when you are forced to leave your home? Is it possible to heal the feeling of displacement? What happens when people invade the place you call home and life continues around you?

Installation Artist: Zoë Flowers entered the gender-based violence movement in 2000. She’s spoken nationally and internationally, worked at several domestic violence coalitions and at a national women of color organization for the past ten. In 2004, Zoë interviewed other survivors about their experiences with domestic/sexual violence. From Ashes to Angel’s Dust: A Journey Through Womanhood is the book that emerged. ASHES – is a play adapted from stories chronicled in the book and has had many successful performances including; Yale University’s Fearless Conference, The White House’s United State of Women Summit in 2016, National Coalition against Domestic Violence’s National Conference, Smith College, and Brown University. Zoë currently facilitates healing sessions, retreats, and workshops across the globe as the Founder of Soul Requirements, Inc., a healing centered consulting business merging art and holistic healing. 

Performer: Sherri Pullum is a producer, director, writer, teaching artist, and versatile actress with stage, TV, film, and national commercial credits.  Sherri founded Pullum Productions to create, develop and produce content, live events and workshops that elevate, educate and entertain through the power of stories, authentic conversation and transformative experiences.  Sherri is the creator, executive producer, and lead actress in CHERRI RED SWEET ESCAPE TV series pilot, represented by BYSB Talent Agency, and the creator and host of DREAMERS UNITE talk show on YouTube.  Sherri is the co-writer, dramaturge, and one of the four actresses of the nationally toured play, Ashes in which she, along with Zoë Flowers, received an artist fellowship from Brown University.  She wrote and performed in a one woman show, Turning Scars into Stars, sharing intergenerational stories of women cancer survivors, and wrote and directed her first musical, Shine, spotlighting black men healing from emotional trauma.  She’s a proud mom too!

Bailey’s Cafe presents As Quiet As It’s Kept (AQAIK), a multi-discipline performance installation based on the stories of veterans of color and their role in a changing community under the artistic direction of Monica L. Williams in collaboration with artists from various genres.

#DisplacedJakesHome #ZoëFlowers #AsQuietAsItsKept #AQAIK #BaileysCafe #MAPFund #NYCCouncil #NYCDCA

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As Quiet As It’s Kept Music Installation: Crooklyn Soundshots, Michael Hill, Songwriter, Singer and Guitarist

An exploration of home, community service and legacy.


As Quiet As It’s Kept music composer Michael Hill.

Michael Hill is a songwriter, singer and guitarist whose music has always centered upon telling stories. He has recorded seven albums of his Original New York-Style Blues and with his band Michael Hill’s Blues Mob has shared his wide-ranging stories with audiences in over 30 countries. Michael is excited to again contribute, in partnership with his brother and lifelong collaborator and accomplice, multi-instrumentalist/composer Kevin Hill, to Bailey’s Cafe’s project As Quiet As It’s Kept.

“Crooklyn Soundshots” is the second of a projected trilogy of song cycles that will each seek to convey some of the feelings, experiences and ideas of an amazing citizen of Bedford Stuyvesant, Brooklyn. Their humor, passion, struggles and humanity will be spotlighted in succinct musical snapshots in the  way that can only be done by music

Kevin Hill, a native of The Bronx, NY, has been studying bass guitar for fifty one of his sixty one years. His early influences were virtually curated by the extraordinary vision of his big brother Michael, with whom he shared a room, thus lending an eclectic and inclusive palette to his playing.  Mike and Kev have been collaborators and co-conspirators from the very beginning and this project offers a wonderful opportunity to extend the breadth of their work. In addition to bass, Kevin adds keyboards, orchestration, composition, programming, production and engineering to the team.

Bailey’s Cafe presents As Quiet As It’s Kept (AQAIK), a multi-discipline performance installation based on the stories of veterans of color and their role in a changing community under the artistic direction of Monica L. Williams in collaboration with artists from various genres.

#CrooklynSoundshots #MichaelHill #AsQuietAsItsKept #AQAIK #BaileysCafe #MAPFund #NYCCouncil #NYCDCA

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As Quiet As It’s Kept Sonic Installation: We Made It: A Bed-Stuy Sonic Exchange, DJ Reborn

An exploration of home, community service and legacy.


As Quiet As It’s Kept sonic artist DJ Reborn.

Curated and mixed by DJ Reborn the AQAIK sound collage combines audio interview snippets from resilient Bed Stuy veterans weaved with eclectic music spanning the last four decades to tell the sonic story of life after military duty in a rapidly changing world and neighborhood.

Sound Designer: DJ Reborn is a trailblazing, international DJ, sound collage artist, hip hop theater musical director and arts educator. She has spent the last two decades utilizing her passion for music and her skills as a DJ within these worlds to make an impact. Reborn has a myriad of impressive accomplishments including her time as a DJ/creative writing mentor for teen girls at Urban Word NYC, DJ instructor and curriculum designer for Dubspot and currently as a mentor at The Lower Eastside Girl’s Club.

Bailey’s Cafe presents As Quiet As It’s Kept (AQAIK), a multi-discipline performance installation based on the stories of veterans of color and their role in a changing community under the artistic direction of Monica L. Williams in collaboration with artists from various genres.

#WeMadeIt #ABedStuySonicExchange #DJReborn #AsQuietAsItsKept #AQAIK #BaileysCafe #MAPFund #NYCCouncil #NYCDCA

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As Quiet As It’s Kept: Losing Forward., Kadeem Alston-Roman, choreographer

An exploration of home, community service and legacy.


Losing Forward. (2020) choreographed by Kadeem Alston-Roman.

“Losing Forward.” will premiere on the Bailey’s Café YouTube channel TUES. OCT. 20

This dance film explores the various facets within the 7 Stages of Grief after a soldier who goes off to war doesn’t come back home. The audience witnesses the soldier struggle with his mortality and how to cope with it. However, this story is not his alone. The grief explored throughout this work is dedicated to humanity during this time of seeming loss: loss of loved ones, loss of independence, loss of autonomy and loss of self. However, within this loss, if one can continue to move forward through the grieving process and not get stuck, an abundance of life can be discovered.

See the trailer for “Losing Forward.” below.

Choreographer: Kadeem Alston-Roman is a choreographer, teacher and holistic wellness practitioner. As a choreographer he has choreographed over 35 dance works in a variety of genres, with his work being showcased Off-Broadway and being nominated for an AUDELCO Award. As a teacher he has taught at various institutions that include Lincoln Center, The Joyce Theater and Brooklyn Friends School. As a holistic wellness practitioner with training and certifications in aromatherapy, hypnotherapy and energy healing, he has worked with various populations including those at Google, NYU and Presbyterian Hospital. 

Dancer: Brooklyn-born Kasiem Aboti Walter (aka DuhPeshKey) uses the circumstances of his birth—born to two deaf parents—to create interpretive dance and storytelling styled music using American Sign Language.  DuhPeshKey means “the key to the dispatchment of entertainment.” A name that describes perfectly his goal to bridge the gap between the deaf and the hearing and create an inclusive, vibrant, unique performance.  http://letsshoottv.com/

Videographer: Born and raised in the Democratic Republic of Congo, Olivier Kay relocated to the States in December 2004. After earning a degree in Computer Information Systems at SUNY Fredonia, he discovered that he has a passion for photography which quickly grew to include videography.  In 2019, Oliver established his own video and photography company OKAY Motion,(https://www.facebook.com/okaymotionbiz/ ) where he uses his talent to capture memories for weddings, graduations, birthday parties, music videos and much more.

Bailey’s Cafe presents As Quiet As It’s Kept (AQAIK), a multi-discipline performance installation based on the stories of veterans of color and their role in a changing community under the artistic direction of Monica L. Williams in collaboration with artists from various genres.

#LosingForward. #KadeemAlstonRoman #AsQuietAsItsKept #AQAIK #BaileysCafe #MAPFund #NYCCouncil #NYCDCA

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As Quiet as It’s Kept (AQAIK)

An exploration of home, community service and legacy.


HISTORY

Bailey’s Café and producing artistic director, Monica L. Williams in collaboration with artists Zoe Flowers, Michael Hill, Anna Pond, DJ Reborn, Kadeem Alston Roman and Robyn Twomey presents As Quiet As It’s Kept (AQAIK), a series of multi-discipline performance installations based on the stories of Black Veterans and long-time residents of Bedford Stuyvesant, Brooklyn examining home, community and honor while expressing hopes for belonging in a rapidly changing neighborhood.

Bailey’s Cafe commissioned Monica L. Williams to be the artistic leader of AQAIK in 2015. She was already consulting for the organization exploring different development options and referring artists to AQAIK. Her leadership tenure started with community conversations – Bailey’s always leads with community.

Monica has been working in the genre of ‘performance installation’ since 2013 with her own project, LoveHustle, and proposed it as a genre for Bailey’s Café.

Monica curated four artists from within Bailey’s community (Kadeem, Anna, Zoe, Michael) and two Brooklyn artists who are her long-term collaborators and bring increased visibility (Robyn T, DJ Reborn) to work with her on the development of AQAIK into a performance installation.

Over the past 5 years, Monica has worked closely with Bailey’s founder and Executive Director to research the community, secure funding, create a project team infrastructure and, most importantly, turning community conversations into pieces of art in collaboration with our installation artists.

As Quiet As It’s Kept first performed at Bailey’s Cafe in 2017.

In 2020-21 we will be premiering the next phase of AQAIK and delving deeper into ideas of home, community, identity and honor and how they shape a rapidly changing neighborhood.

Learn more about upcoming AQAIK events.

#AsQuietAsItsKept # AQAIK #BaileysCafe # MonicaLWilliams # AnnaPond #KadeemAlston #MichaelHill #DJReborn #RobynTwomey #ZoeFlowers #MAPFund #NYCCouncil #NYCDCA

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AQAIK: 10K in 45 days


Bailey’s Café, a community-based arts safe space in the heart of Bedford Stuyvesant, Brooklyn launches ‘10K in 45 days’ fundraiser for As Quiet As It’s Kept, our multi-discipline installation performance.

Make a donation to As Quiet As It’s Kept at http://fundly.com/10-k-in-45-days

OCTOBER 1 – NOVEMBER 15, 2020

As Quiet As It’s Kept evolved out of Bailey Cafe’s longtime relationship with Black Veterans for Social Justice and long time residents in the Bedford Stuyvesant community.  Stefanie Siegel, founder and executive director of Bailey’s Café was influenced by Herbert Sweat, a decorated Vietnam Veteran and Bed Stuy neighbor.  “When Sweat says the phrase As Quiet As It’s Kept you know something is going to be revealed that people don’t talk about.” 

Siegel partnered with conceptual artist Monica L. Williams to create a long-term, multidisciplinary, community-based art experience through performance installations.  Over a five year period, Williams conducted community conversations with neighbors and curated a team of six collaborating artists.   “My hope is that As Quiet As It’s Kept is a model for durational community-based art collaboration between artists, neighborhood business and community members working with collective agency towards community wellness by addressing topics otherwise kept quiet”, says Williams.

AQAIK includes original dance, digital art, music, theater, sonic, photography installations created in collaboration with Williams by artists who either live or work in the Bedford Stuyvesant neighborhood.  “Robyn Twomey, a commercial print photographer and self-proclaimed gentrifier, wanted to create in and about her community,” says Williams.  “Our installation, We Are Here, is a story of home and belonging and like all of the installations, it considers how our ideas shape a rapidly changing neighborhood.” 

We Are Here is a feature of Photoville Fence touring 11 cities including Brooklyn.   All other installations will be streamed via Bailey’s Cafe’s website and various social media platforms once a month from October through January.  Click here for more information about each installation.

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7NMS| Marjani & Everett Saunders

The Project : an Update

We are 7NMS a collaborative of artists in music, dance, photography and film. We stake claim in a lineage of Black radical performance, innovative critical thinking, building culturally rooted vibrant communities. Spear-headed by choreographer Marjani Forte-Saunders and composer Everett Saunders, 7NMS is an internationally touring ensemble whose latest work (Memoirs of a …Unicorn) is a two-time recipient of the prestigious NY Dance & Performance /Bessie Award. 7NMS was recently featured in Dance Magazine (Sept. 2020) and are currently guest artists at Lehman College and the Peabody Institute at John Hopkins University.

We envision 7NMS as a tree, with 3 solid branches that feed the gearth of our work in Black radical performance, and liberation praxis. In fundraising for the tree of 7NMS we are fueling these 3 branches:

The Art (PROPHET)

The Studios (Asis Studios & Saturn)

& The Platform (Art & Power)

Our fundraising goals are to raise $150,000 over the next 3 years towards these 3 branches.

Make a tax deductible donation here: http://igfn.us/form/kllvIA

Sincerely,

Marjani & Everett

A Note about The Collaboration of Marjani & Everett Saunders

The work centers composer Everett Saunders narratives, references, and sonic impulses as an Emcee and Sound designer to examine and exalt the lives of Hip Hop architects and Emcees. Everett is one of his names, yet as “Mental” he is also an Emcee. Marjani is serving as a choreographer and director in the project. This is an ongoing collaboration, that marks our eighth collaboration, with Everett serving as Composer and Sound Designer on all of Marjani’s choreographic works, dating back to Marjani’s first mainstage presentation of EGO, as part of Dance Theatre Workshop’s Fresh Tracks Performance Series and Artist Residency.

For Marjani’s trilogy of works examining the intersections mental illness, addiction, and systemic oppression, Everett received a New Music USA Grant to develop a 3-Dimensional aural experience for audiences during the performance. He continued this journey for a Sound Installation paired with video, at MoCADA Museum during Marjani’s Curatorial Residency and Exhibit “being Here… In Memory”. Our last work Memoirs of a… Unicorn received two NY Dance and Performance/Bessie Awards for Outstanding Production and Outstanding Visual Design. Inspired by the contemporary presence of friends and mentors, Okwui Okpokwasili and Peter Born, 7 Names is our public emergence as a collaborative team, with both artists working at the visioning helm of this project. 

Bailey’s Café (www.baileyscafe.org), a Bedford-Stuyvesant, Brooklyn based non-profit is honored to serve as the fiscal sponsor for PROPHET and 7MNS. All donations to Bailey’s Café (501c3) are tax deductible to the full extent of the law.

NEW DATE FOR STUDIO OPENING

THURSDAY, NOVEMBER 12TH, 4 PM PST/7 PM EST

ZOOM LINK: https://us02web.zoom.us/j/81444167934#success

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Fifth Annual Intimate Salon Fundraiser and Online Auction

Please join us at our Fifth Annual Fundraiser 
An Intimate Salon Hosted by Bailey’s Board of Directors 

Featuring: Michael Hill’s Blues Mob, 
 Kevin Hill,  Tony Lewis and Michael Hill 
(NY Blues Hall of Fame Master Blues Artist)
Celebrating the 25th Anniversary of their 
Acclaimed Debut Album "Bloodlines"
with Special Guests: Wynette & Kathy Hill and Roger Byam

Opening Concert: Marvin Dolly, Guitar and Dequon Dolly, Bass 

Thursday, October 10th, 2019 7 PM to 9:30 PM 
At the Tribeca Home of Long-Time Bailey’s Friends and Supporters 
The Shafer’s 35 North Moore Street, apt. 6C, NYC

Purchase Tickets Here

Another Way to Support Bailey's 
Check Out the Special One-of-a-Kind Items and Experiences at
Our Online Auction
https://www.32auctions.com/baileys2019
Opens September 30th; Closes November 14th 
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