“Largely defined by her trailblazing play A Raisin in the Sun, Lorraine Hansberry died in 1965 at the age of thirty-four. A prolific and probing artist, she was also one of the most radical, courageous, and prescient artist-intellectuals of the twentieth century—and one of the least understood.”— Imani Perry
Drawing from Lorraine Hansberry’s recorded speeches and interviews, we’ve assembled a body of interrelated narratives and composed 12 tracks around them. These narratives address not only the burning issues of Lorraine’s past, present and future but, through her extraordinary vision, ours as well.
Complimented by additional posthumous words from Coretta Scott King and EF Schumacher along with bridges to the present drawn by UK poet Mr Gee, a compelling portrait of an extraordinary woman emerges. Musical contributions from Emma Johnson with her outstanding horn arrangements and our favourite violinist Kieran O’Malley bring sparkle and depth to the sound.
The aphelion is the point in the orbit of an object when it is furthest from the sun. Metaphorically speaking, the world of today feels further from the light than ever before. Lorraine Hansberry was among the few in her time who recognised that we are heading in perilous directions. Through her depth of historical knowledge she understood that this hadn’t changed much over many centuries as we’ve remained unable to widely perceive the underlying mechanics of our world. Alas, the world she fought so hard to illuminate still has a dangerously dim outlook. We need her light now more than ever to help guide us out of the darkness.
This tribute is, perhaps selfishly, a way of keeping Lorraine Hansberry alive and hopefully expanding the reach of her legacy. As long as she’s still talking and people are still listening, some part of her lives in the present. To us, in these dark times, that is a deeply comforting thought.