If you weren’t present at the 2021 CJA Poetry Cypher, you missed an exhilarating evening of cultural expression! The CJA Deltas Arts & Letters Committee, co-chaired by Nicholl Rodgers and Kristine Smith, hosted its annual Poetry Cypher on Saturday, January 30th. The theme of this virtual event was “They Love Our Rhythm, But Not Our Blues.”
The evening began with a performance by members of the committee who used American Sign Language to express “How Many Times” by Trey Songz. The routine was choreographed by CJA member Marilyn Hugue. Attendees were then formally welcomed by Chapter President Karen Wade Culp. CJA member Passion Moss Hasan served as Mistress of Ceremonies, frequently telling viewers to “clap it up” and “snap it up” for the spoken word artists that included Darrell Shamello Durant, Ameerah Shabazz-Bilal, James C. Ellerby, Malcolm Minor, Treasure, Mwikali Words, and Euphony.
Attendees were captivated as the artists proudly spoke from personal, cultural, and historical perspectives; and expressed triumph over adversity. The Zoom chat was on overload as viewers gave “virtual snaps” and celebrated each artist. At the conclusion, Moss Hasan invited attendees to remain for “CJA Club Quarantine.” Sorority member and DJ Thelma Ramsey, who played tunes that kept attendees moving throughout the night in between performances, turned up the volume and the party ensued as attendees danced to familiar old school club songs. It was a fabulous virtual event attended by over 200 people! Congratulations to the Arts & Letters Committee for a free, entertaining, expressive, educational, and cultural event. Please check the CJA Deltas website at cjadeltas.org for future programs.