Charles Overton is a native Richmonder and a former member of the American Youth Harp Ensemble (now the Greenspring American Youth Harp Ensemble). He’s based in Boston, having graduated from Berklee College of Music and he maintains an active career playing jazz, classical, world music and just about anything else that he finds an interest in.
Articles by Peter Solomon
This year marks the 200th anniversary of the birth of Elizabeth Van Lew, the wealthy Richmond heiress who led one of the most successful Union spy rings of the Civil War. Her legacy has been interpreted through the works of journalists, historians and playwrights. Adding to the intrigue, is Mary Bowser, a woman enslaved by the Van Lew family, rumored to have carried out espionage in the Confederate White House. But as WCVE’s Peter Solomon reports for Virginia Currents, the truth of this story is elusive.
Over the last 25 years, Deanna Witkowski has made a career out of bringing jazz to the church. She approaches this synthesis in a variety of ways: sometimes composing original musical settings for ancient liturgical texts and sometimes taking familiar hymn melodies and creating arrangements with jazz rhythms and harmonies.
This spring, the Richmond Jazz Society is celebrating the 100th anniversary of Ella Fitzgerald’s birth with a series of performances by female jazz artists.
For 500 years, the Jewish community of Vilnius, Lithuania was one of the most important centers of Jewish life in all of Eastern Europe. In fact, it was referred to as "the Jerusalem of Lithuania." That changed when the Nazis invaded in 1941. In just three years , they virtually eradicated the city's Jewish population. They accomplished this by rounding up the Jews and other so-called undesirables, transporting them to the Ponar forest surrounding Vilnius, and shooting them dead one bullet at a time in mass grave sites. At least 100,000 people were executed in this fashion.