Click here to see photos from this past program.

Click here to watch excerpts from this past program.

Join us for the ceremonial unveiling of a plaque to honor jazz icon Charles Mingus on the building in which he lived and planned to launch a school. This legendary composer, bandleader, multi-instrumentalist, and social activist was a towering figure in American music, fusing and transcending musical genres, and pushing the boundaries of bass playing and collective improvisation. We will hear about his musical legacy and about his life in the Village, and be treated to a performance by former members of the posthumous Mingus band.

This is our 22nd plaque unveiling. Our program has honored and marked the homes of local figures from Jane Jacobs to James Baldwin and Jean-Michel Basquiat; Allen Ginsberg to Alex Haley; Frank O’Hara to Frank Stella; and Martha Graham to Lorraine Hansberry. Register today to secure your spot!


Mike Richmond has been featured on over 350 recordings (16 solo). After studying with Edward Arian of the Philadelphia Orchestra and Jimmy Garrison of the John Coltrane group, Mike went on to perform and record with numerous musical greats, including Miles Davis, Stan Getz, Gil Evans, Dizzy Gillespie, Joe Henderson, Chet Baker, Lee Konitz, Don Cherry, João Gilberto, Henry Mancini, Elvin Jones, Roland Kirk, Art Farmer, Chico Hamilton, Horace Silver, Toshiko Akiyoshi – Lew Tabackin Big Band, Jack DeJohnette, Elvin Jones, Hubert Laws, and Ravi Shankar, among many others. He has won Grammy Awards with Miles Davis, Quincy Jones, and the Philadelphia Orchestra. Mike replaced Charles Mingus in the Mingus Dynasty Ensemble, which he led from 1980 to 1985. He has taught at NYU since 1988, winning multiple teaching awards. His book Modern Walking Bass Technique is one of the leading texts worldwide on jazz bass technique. 

Janet Coleman met Charles Mingus as a 17-year-old college student at the University of Michigan. She is the author of Mingus/Mingus: Two Memoirs, (with the late poet Al Young) and The Compass: The Improvisational Theater That Revolutionized American Comedy. Her articles, reviews, and short fiction have appeared in such publications as New York, Vanity Fair, Village Voice, Elle, Esquire, Yale/Theater, Ploughshares, Book World, Book Week, and the New York Review of Books. As Janet and David and The Great East Coast Radio Company, she and her husband David Dozer have collaborated in writing, performing, and producing for stage, film, television, and radio. Together, they host and produce WBAI’s Cat Radio Cafe and PRN’s The Hour of Lateral Thinking. Janet is currently writing, for Applause Books, Mother Improv, a book about Viola Spolin, the creator of Theater Games.

Frank Lacy embarked on his celebrated musical career after earning a university degree in physics. His first professional performances in the ’70s were with Joe Tex and as a session trombonist at famed Allen Toussaint Studios in New Orleans. He attended The Berklee College of Music and the Rutgers Jazz Professors Mason Gross Jazz Department. Frank is regarded as super-exec John Hammond’s last “find” and has performed and recorded with music icons of all genres, notably Lionel Hampton, Illinois Jacquet, Lester Bowie, Henry Threadgill, Bobby Watson, Art Blakey’s Jazz Messengers (as musical director), McCoy Tyner, Dizzy Gillespie, Roy Hargrove, Elvis Costello, The Eurythmics, D’Angelo, Erykah Badu, Common, and Kid Cudi. He has recorded on five Grammy Award winning albums and was a member of the Mingus Big Band for over thirty years.

Multi-instrumentalist/composer Scott Robinson has been a highly active presence on the New York-based creative music scene for nearly 40 years, appearing on some 275 records, including four Grammy Award winning ones. Scott performs on both brass and reed instruments, and is equally at home with the traditional and the adventurous. He has been heard on tenor sax with Buck Clayton, on alto clarinet with Paquito D’Rivera, on trumpet with Lionel Hampton, and on bass sax with the New York City Opera, as well as alongside artists as diverse as Anthony Braxton, Ruby Braff, Ella Fitzgerald, Clark Terry, Elton John, Bob Brookmeyer, Frank Wess, Chet Baker, Maria Schneider, and Roscoe Mitchell. Scott has been the winner of numerous critics/readers polls and Jazz Journalists Association awards. He was a member of the Mingus Band for 30 years.

Photo credit (top): Tom Marcello

Wednesday, May 31, 2023
6:00 pm

Wednesday, May 31, 2023

6:00 pm ET

In-person event


Pre-registration is required

Location: 5 Great Jones Street

Accessibility: The event is outdoors and sidewalk-accessible

Click here to watch the recording of this program.