WNCU Partners with Lenora Zenzalai Helm

Lenora Zenzalai Helm, award winning jazz vocal musician, composer, lyricist and educator will perform a concert celebrating her new CD, Chronicles of a Butterfly at Hayti Heritage Center, Durham, NC on Friday, September 18, 2009 at 7 pm.

With this event, Helm is kicking off a 12 concert tour series, “The Butterfly Concerts”. The goal for each event is to raise funds for families and/or communities who have endured recent tragedies or traumas. The concept for The Butterfly Concerts and the CD release is that of transformation from personal or community tragedies to triumphs, despite profound challenges. Each concert event will have a portion of the proceeds donated to families in crisis. The September 18th concert will help raise monies for The Elm Family of Durham, NC, recently suffering a tragic fire in their home. The couple, (with the wife stationed in Iraq), has two young children, ages 8 and 4.

This musical event will take place on Friday, September 18, 2009 at the St. Joseph’s Historic Foundation, Hayti Heritage Center. The events for the evening include a 7 pm guest reception with light food and wine followed by a live concert at 8 pm where Ms. Helm will be joined by many of her fellow faculty from the music department of NCCU, Ed Paolantonio, piano; Baron Tymas, guitar and Durham native, A.J. Brown, acoustic bass. Guest performers include Ira Wiggins, saxophone and flute, members of the NCCU Vocal Jazz Ensemble and other surprise guests. The evening will conclude with Helm autographing her CDs while guests enjoy delectable desserts and coffee beverages from the Durham-based business, The French Quarter Bakery. Public radio station, WNCU 90.7 FM, is one of the promotional partners onboard to support Helm’s Chronicles of a Butterfly: A Story of Transformation Durham concert event and CD release. They will be the first national radio station to premiere Helm’s new release in promotional ads and on-air. Listeners outside of the local Raleigh/Durham area can log onto www.WNCU.org to hear Chronicles starting September 4, 2009.

Helm’s fifth CD release, Chronicles of a Butterfly, will be received by each guest attending the event. This new CD release marks her return to recording after a six-year hiatus, her previous recordings reaching national top jazz chart positions, and receiving extensive national radio airplay and international critical acclaim. Chronicles of a Butterfly is a live recording, captured at Hayti in 2007, and is produced by Branford Marsalis. The recording features pianist, Mulgrew Miller, bassists Neal Caine and John Price and guitarist Doug Wamble. Helm has dedicated this recording to her mentor, the late pianist/composer Andrew Hill, who tapped Helm to write lyrics for his composition Hermano Frere, one of several compositions from a suite about the 9/11 tragedies. She sang Hermano Frere on tour with Hill upon his winning the prestigious Jazzpar Award in Europe. “‘Hermano Frere’ is a song about our responsibilities to each other, says Helm, “and Andrew’s many  onversations about the wisdom of metamorphosis and transformation in the seasons of our lives was the impetus for the title Chronicles of a Butterfly .”
What: Lenora Zenzalai Helm, vocal jazz musician
Chronicles of a Butterfly: A Story of Transformation CD Release & Fundraising Concert
When: Friday, September 18th, 2009
Time: 7 pm guest reception; 8 pm concert; 9 pm dessert after-party and CD signing
Where: St. Joseph’s Historic Foundation, Hayti Heritage Center, 804 Fayetteville Street, Durham, NC 27701
Cost: $20 (includes admission to guest reception, concert, autographed CD, dessert after-party)
Tickets: Hayti Box Office, 919 683-1709 ext 21 or online at www.LenoraHelm.com
Info: LENORA ZENZALAI HELM, THE ZENZALAI GROUP, ph: 917 826 7979 email: [email protected]
Helm’s achievements in music have spanned 25 years garnering her inclusion as a subject of biographical record, since 2005, for Who’s Who in America, Who’s Who in American Women and Who’s Who in the World. Lenora Zenzalai Helm is an award winning jazz vocal musician, composer, lyricist and educator with two decades of international acclaim. A former U.S. Jazz Ambassador for Southeastern Africa, she is a MacDowell Composer Fellow and the first Black female composer to win the Chamber Music America/ Doris Duke Charitable Foundation’s New Works: Creation and Presentation jazz composers award. Ms. Helm has toured with her group internationally, performed on prestigious jazz festivals and in jazz concert halls, and recorded with the biggest names in jazz. Her discography includes recordings of her own, and as a featured guest with Donald Brown, Ron Carter, Stanley Cowell, Antonio Hart, Andrew Hill, Dave Liebman and Branford Marsalis. This Chicago, IL native worked as a teaching artist for 20 years in New York City (previous to making Durham, NC her home) for Carnegie Hall, Brooklyn Philharmonic and Young Audiences of New York. Helm is on the music faculty at North Carolina Central University in Durham, NC teaching jazz vocal performance in NCCU’s prestigious Jazz Studies program, and co-directing their NCCU Vocal Jazz Ensemble. Visit her online at www.LenoraHelm.com