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Jazz-themed programs set in Dover July 14-16

Admission is free, but reservations are required
July 13, 2017
Hand-painted Victrola horns are on display at the Johnson Victrola Museum in Dover. FILE PHOTO

The Johnson Victrola Museum at 375 South New St. in Dover will celebrate its 50th anniversary with a series of programs through the end of 2017. The museum highlights the life and achievements of Dover's native son Eldridge Reeves Johnson, founder of The Victor Talking Machine Co. Through machines, trademarks, recordings, objects, paintings and advertisements, the museum showcases Johnson, his company and the development of the sound-recording industry. Constructed by the State of Delaware with an endowment provided by the Johnson family, it opened to the public Dec. 14, 1967.

In partnership with the Dover Public Library and DonDel Productions, the museum will feature programs on the theme of jazz Friday-Sunday, July 14-16.

Friday, July 14

Screenings of Ken Burns' documentary "Jazz" will be at Dover Public Library. Episode one, "Gumbo," at 10:30 a.m. Episode two, "The Gift," at noon. Episode three, "Our Language," at 2 p.m. Episode four, "The True Welcome," at 4 p.m. Episode five, "Pure Pleasure," at 6 p.m. The library is at 35 Loockerman Plaza, Dover. For more information, call 302-736-7030.

A lecture on Duke Ellington and Rosedale Beach is set at 11 a.m. to explore the history of the popular waterfront resort run by and for people of color, which featured internationally renowned performers. A lecture on Fats Waller at 1 p.m. will explore the life and achievements of the noted jazz musician, accompanied by 78-rpm recordings played on authentic Victor Talking Machines. Both are at the second-floor gallery of the Johnson Victrola Museum, 375 S. New St., Dover. (There is no elevator. Second story is accessed via staircase.) Admission is free, but due to space restrictions, reservations are required. To make a reservation, call 302-739-3262.

Saturday, July 15

The following jazz-themed films will be screened: "Jazz on a Summer's Day" about the 1958 Newport Jazz Festival at 10:30 a.m. Episode six, "Swing, the Victory of Celebration," from Ken Burns' documentary "Jazz" at 10:30 a.m. "Let's Get Lost" about trumpeter Chet Baker at noon. Episode seven, "Dedicated to Chaos," from "Jazz" at 12:30 p.m. Spike Lee's "Mo' Better Blues" at 2 p.m. Episode eight, "Risk," from "Jazz" at 2:30 p.m. Dover Public Library, 35 Loockerman Plaza, Dover. For more information, call 302-736-7030.

A lecture at 11 a.m. will explore the origins of jazz music, its early pioneers and the contributions made to the art form by Victor Records, accompanied by 78-rpm recordings played on authentic Victor Talking Machines. At 1 p.m. a musical ensemble from DonDel Enterprises will present "All That Jazz: From the Beginning" featuring songs and dances from the early days of jazz that have been adored for the last 100 years. Johnson Victrola Museum, 375 S. New St., Dover. (There is no elevator. Second story gallery is accessed via staircase.) Admission is free, but due to space restrictions, reservations are required. To make a reservation, call 302-739-3262.

Sunday, July 16

Screening of the following jazz-themed films: Episode nine, "The Adventure," from "Jazz" at 1 p.m. "What Happened, Miss Simone?" about singer Nina Simone at 1:30 p.m. Episode 10, "A Masterpiece at Midnight," from "Jazz" at 3 p.m. "Miles Ahead" about trumpeter Miles Davis at 3:15 p.m. Dover Public Library, 35 Loockerman Plaza, Dover. 302-736-7030.

At 1 p.m, the museum will host the DonDel Ensemble performing some of jazz music's most memorable songs while the library will screen popular jazz films. On Sunday, jazz films continue at the library.