Max Roach 100

A Joyce Theater Production
Tue Apr 2 - Sun Apr 7

The Joyce Theater joins the nationwide centennial celebration of the iconic drummer, composer, and activist Max Roach with an evening of commissioned works made in tribute to this legendary Jazz pioneer. Curated by Richard Colton, this special program brings Joyce artists together in conversation with Roach’s lasting legacy set to recordings of the late musician performing his greatest works. Characterized by its Afro-Cuban percussion, the 1961 album Percussion Bitter Sweet becomes the soundscape for choreographer Ronald K. Brown’s latest work for dancers from Havana-based Malpaso Dance Company and Brown’s own EVIDENCE, A Dance Company. In The Dream/It’s Time, Roach’s band joins a recording of Martin Luther King Jr. in an aspirational and urgent conversation, now amplified by the streetdance storytelling of Rennie Harris Puremovement. Tap artist Ayodele Casel performs an explosively theatrical solo set to a series of duets between Roach and fellow Jazz pioneer, pianist Cecil Taylor. 

Special Performances

Curtain Chat: Wed, Apr 3

Family Matinee: Sat, Apr 6 at 2pm

Funding Credits


Lead Production Sponsor: Ann & George Colony

Presenting Sponsor: Virginia & Timothy Millhiser

This production was supported by a Joyce Creative Residency awarded to Rennie Harris made possible by generous funding provided by Mellon Foundation. Major support generously provided by the Rockefeller Brothers Fund and additional residency support provided to Ronald K. Brown/EVIDENCE by a partnership project with Catskill Mountain Foundation. Residency support for Ayodele Casel provided by Summer Stages Dance @ The Institute of Contemporary Art/Boston. Additional support provided by Jane E. Goldberg. 

Additional creation support generously provided by Anonymous, Carol & Tony Friscia, Emi Gittleman, Olivia Howard & Greg Griffith, David Hughes, Jr., Christopher Jones & Deborah McAlister, Jane Kendall, Dana & Michael Robinson, and Susan Sillins.