May 1, 2021 12:00pm 3:00pm
Staying Power – Opening Ceremony
The Village of Arts and Humanities
2544 Germantown Avenue, Philadelphia, PA 19133

Join us in person and online as we open Staying Power in ceremony. This event will include a poetry reading, live performances, and a neighborhood procession with accompanying adornment stations for participants of all ages. This ceremony will feature performances and sharings from Musiqology and Retro Imperfections of Beyond the Bars Music! Hosted by the ever-abundant STARFIRE, this ceremony is an invitation to bring your joy to the street and revel in our collective staying power.

Performer Bios

Guthrie P. Ramsey, Jr. | Musiqology 

A member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, Guthrie P. Ramsey, Jr. is a music historian, pianist, composer, and the Edmund J. and Louise W. Kahn Term Professor of Music at the University of Pennsylvania. 

A widely-published writer, he’s the author of Race Music: Black Cultures from Bebop to Hip-Hop (2003), and The Amazing Bud Powell: Black Genius, Jazz History and the Challenge of Bebop (2013).  Dr. Ramsey is co-author beside Samuel A. Floyd, Jr., with Melanie Zeck of The Transformation of Black Music: The Rhythms, the Songs and the Ships of the African Diaspora (2017) and editor of Rae Linda Brown, The Heart of a Woman: The Life and Music of Florence B. Price (2020). His books in progress include Who Hears Here?, a collection of essays, and the monograph Sound Proof: Black Music, Magic and Racial Intimacies, a history of African American music from the slave-era to the present. He was editor for the series Music of the African Diaspora at the University of California Press for ten years and founding editor of the blog

As a producer, label head, and leader of the band Dr. Guy’s Musiqology, Dr. Ramsey has released five recording projects and has performed at venues such as The Blue Note and Harlem Stage in New York, and the Annenberg Theater of the Performing Arts and Chris’ Jazz Café in Philadelphia, and other venues worldwide.  His musical commissions include “Someone Is Listening,” written with poet Elizabeth Alexander, commemorating the 100th anniversary of the NAACP; he recently scored the prize-winning documentary Making Sweet Tea: Black Gay Men of the South. His documentary Amazing: The Tests and Triumph of Bud Powell was a selection of the BlackStar Film Festival in 2015 and his multimedia performance piece Hide/Melt/Ghost made its New York debut at Harlem Stage in 2019. Ramsey hosts the Musiqology Podcast and Musiqology Rx is his community arts initiative that provides quality arts programming to under-served communities. He has written for and consulted with museums and galleries such as The Studio Museum in Harlem, The Whitney Museum of American Art, The Museum of Modern Art, and the Nationalgalerie, Staatliche Museen zu Berlin, and was co-curator of the acclaimed exhibition Ain’t Nothing Like the Real Thing: How the Apollo Theater Shaped American Entertainment for the National Museum of African American History and Culture in 2010. Dr. Ramsey has lectured on music nationally and internationally.    


Beyond the Bars| Retro Imperfections

Beyond The Bars is a student driven music and career skills program that is dedicated to interrupting the cycles of violence and incarceration while helping our students recognize their immense potential and bright futures. Retro Imperfections is a youth-led band at Beyond the Bars. Learn more about their work here.  



STARFIRE is a “Curator of Energy & Creative Expression”. As a Mistress Of Ceremonies, Creative Director & Educator STARFIRE empowers & inspires performing artists & creatives to discover, develop & celebrate the power of their unique voice. Follow STARFIRE on Instagram @starfire_369.


The Opening Ceremony is a special program of Staying Power, an outdoor art exhibition and program series in the Fairhill-Hartranft neighborhood of Philadelphia hosted by The Village of Arts and Humanities and curated with Monument Lab.

For on-site attendees: Please remember to wear a face mask and keep a 6-foot distance from other visitors to the exhibition.