February 28, 2023 | BroadwayWorld
Combined with an interactive installation of artist K.C. Grummun's street aesthetic hand cut stencil representations of the performers, this event is not to be missed!
East Passyunk Opera Project (ePOP) teams up with Mobbluz and visual artist K.C. Grummun to present a singular live art experience as a part of the lineup of FREE Plaza programming at the Kimmel Cultural Campus.
This unique event occurs at the intersection of operatic voice, blues, and American songbook and pop culture standards with a funkified boom bap jazz twist. Mobbluz's own DJ and beatmaker Omar Saleem will set the tone with his feelgood grooves. Next, Mobbluz couples their distinctive sound with operatic inspired vocal stylings from East Passyunk Opera Project's Jesus Garcia and Katrina Thurman. Combined with an interactive installation of artist K.C. Grummun's street aesthetic hand cut stencil representations of the performers, this event is not to be missed!
"ePOP creates innovative collaborations as a means of expanding community awareness and access to opera, musical theater, and art song. We bring the art form up close and personal in order to build a more intimate level of engagement between audiences, the artists, and the music," said ePOP General and Artistic Director Katrina Thurman. "We couldn't be more thrilled to collaborate with the exceptional artists of Mobbluz and K.C. Grummun to bring this truly one-of-a-kind event to Philly audiences." MuzikalDunk, drummer and music director for Mobbluz, says "The Mob is all set to cultivate, combine, and captivate the audience with deep record boom bap grooves mixed with other worldly operatic vocals! We're joining two unlikely worlds for a luscious sounding yet groove happy afternoon!"
Home-grown Philadelphia visual artist K.C. Grummun captures a street art aesthetic with his hand cut stencils of Philadelphia icons and other well-known celebrities. Regarding this collaboration, he says "I'm incredibly excited to work with two great sets of musicians! My intention is for my visual art to complement their musical talents."
The Kimmel Cultural Campus FREE programming showcases local artists, bringing to life the original vision of the Kimmel Center building as a place for continuous live entertainment. The FREE programs, taking place under the Kimmel Center's soaring 150-foot vaulted roof in the Plaza, include Family Fundays, Lunchtime Unplugged, Happy Hour Sessions, and Nightlife at the Kimmel.
"This series is one more way we're meeting our guests where they are - offering new audiences a casual opportunity to come check us out at every time of day, while encouraging existing patrons to come early and stay late!" said Crystal Brewe, Chief Marketing and Audience Experience Officer on the Kimmel Cultural Campus. "With more local talent onstage and more student up-and-comers, this new lineup offers more opportunities to gather around the power of the arts."
ePOP, Mobbluz, and K.C. Grummun will appear in the Kimmel's Happy Hour Session on Friday, March 10 on the Commonwealth Plaza Stage inside of the Kimmel. The show will take place from 4:00 PM- 7:00 PM and guests are encouraged to drop in any time within that window.
The event is free and the Kimmel Cultural Campus welcomes folks to visit the event landing page and RSVP to let them know you're coming. Reservations, however, are not required.
Artists for the March 10th Happy Hour Session at The Kimmel Cultural Center include ePOP's Philadelphia-based opera singers Katrina Thurman, soprano, and Jesus Garcia, tenor. They will be joined by Philadelphia-based boom bap jazz band, Mobbluz and visual artist K.C. Grummun.
The performance will be on Friday, March 10th, 2023 at the Kimmel Center's Commonwealth Plaza Stage, located inside the Kimmel Center at 300 South Broad Street in Philadelphia. The show begins at 4:00 PM with Mobbluz's own DJ Omar Saleem and continues with live music from Mobbluz and ePOP starting at 4:45PM. The show ends at 7:00 PM and folks are encouraged to drop in any time between 4:00 PM -7:00 PM to enjoy the interactive performance and bar concessions by Garces.
The Kimmel Cultural Campus' Happy Hour Sessions are brought to you by PNC Arts Alive and Independence Blue Cross.
Learn more at www.epopphilly.org.
East Passyunk Opera Project (ePOP) was developed to create opportunities to bring opera off the stage and into Philadelphia communities. The brainchild of Katrina Thurman, an opera singer who has performed with The Metropolitan Opera, Aurelien Eulert, pianist and head of music for Opera Delaware, and Robert Hawkey, the design was to bring the art form up close and personal in order to build a more intimate level of engagement between audiences, the artists, and the music. From their first packed house concert in December of 2019, ePOP quickly turned to outdoor performances in partnership with East Passyunk Avenue Business Improvement District, digital productions such as their 2021 Love Notes, and towards collaborations with exceptional local performance and visual artists and venues in order to find innovative ways to bring free or low-cost performances of opera, musical theater, and art song to Philadelphia audiences. ePOP collaborates with local opera singers, visual artists, musicians, and performance artists who are well established and revered in their individual art forms but may not be recognized by their local communities and neighbors. Additionally, ePOP presents internationally acclaimed, award winning vocalists alongside local artists, exposing our Philadelphia neighbors to excellent interpreters of opera, art song, musical theater, and the visual arts. For more about ePOP, visit epopphilly.org.
"It just kind of happened, we were never supposed to be a band" claims MuzikalDunk, the drummer and musical director of Mobbluz. Each member brings years of independent experience in Philly's music scene and came together through the joy of live improvisational music. Playing as the house band for hip hop acts gave way to hosting jazzed out jam sessions evolving their musical focus from a chill back-up-band for other artists into carving out their own lane as a multi-headed jazz monster through hip hop - guaranteed to make heads spin, then, bop to classic boom-bap sounds while lighting up your minds with brand new sonic seasonings! If you're a fan of The Roots, Robert Glasper, and Tobe Nwigwe, even the Wu-Tang Clan you may have found your new favorite band! For more about Mobbluz, www.mobbluz.com.
K.C. Grummun captures the street art aesthetic with his hand cut stencils of Philadelphia icons and other well-known celebrities. Influenced by artists like Shepard Fairey, Blek le Rat, and Banksy, K.C. first took to the streets in 2012 with his alter ego, "Franksy". His current work is focused on celebrating women in the restaurant industry through portraiture. This series was most recently featured last fall at Love City Brewing and a small selection was shown at Khyber Pass Pub for the "Pink Boots" Women in Brewing fundraiser.