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The Broadway League’s Black to Broadway Initiative announced the third annual Broadway Celebrates Juneteenth concert in Times Square on Sunday, June 18
from 11:00 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. (rain or shine).

The Black Wall Street Times spoke with Omaha’s own Gennean Scott, Chief Diversity Officer of The Broadway League about what visitors and New Yorkers can look forward to this year.

Scott serves on the board of directors for College Possible, and I AM Dance. She is an active member of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc. and serves as a national thought leader, trainer, and speaker. And though a rare meat eater, she will tear up an Omaha Steak.

Photo Courtesy: Gennean Scott 

For the past twenty years, Scott’s commitment to inclusion and equity includes her work on various racial and social justice initiatives in community organizations and professionally in non-profit and education sectors. 

Asked why she’s a fan of the theater over television or film storytelling, Scott responded, “Because there’s a beginning there’s a middle and an end. I don’t have to tune in next week. I don’t have to worry about a cliffhanger until next year or next season.”

Along with meet and greets from producers, playwrights, and communal intermission conversations, Scott says the theater is a place where “there’s a shared commonality of what we’ve experienced and you don’t necessarily get that when you watch a TV show.”

Proudly hailing from Omaha, Nebraska, Scott says her role with The Broadway League is bigger than herself.

Photo Courtesy: Broadway Celebrates Juneteenth

“I knew that this calling was something greater than me.” Scott continued, “I had a responsibility to my community and to my people and to future generations. Until I am called to be or do something else I will be here and I’ll be thankful.”

Among all the accolades she has received, her greatest reward is that of mom. Scott is most proud of her two children, James and Jadyn.

“I’m from Nebraska, and I was one of those kids that liked theater, but I didn’t know that it was okay to like it. Every time I went I felt like I was the only Black person there but when I turned 16 I came to New York and saw my first Broadway musical and everybody here was Black and I was like, ‘you know, this is kinda awesome.'”

This free outdoor concert is open to all as the community gathers to honor the annual cultural holiday and celebration.

Black culture and expression will be celebrated by Black Broadway artists performing songs, dances, and spoken word accompanied by live music provided by The Music Performance Trust Fund.

Special guest speakers will also make appearances throughout the June 18 event (including a surprise guest Ms. Scott wouldn’t even tell me about).

Mentioning Black Theater United, Broadway Against Racial Injustice, Broadway Advocacy Coalition, Scott says the artists and those who come to see them deserve an experience reflective of our lives and an homage to the lives lived before us.

Reflecting on the diversity of not only storytellers on stage but members of the crowd itself, Scott says the first two years of Broadway Celebrates Juneteenth captivated the world’s attention.

Scott remembers, “To see everybody who lives in New York, curious tourists, and people from different countries of all different races and ethnicities cheering us on, it was just so much love.”

Unafraid to enter the rooms and say what needs to be said, Scott remarked, “We live this, I wake up and I don’t get a choice if I’m Black or not — I’m Black every day. And when you look at me, I’m visually Black every day.”

Scott concluded, “So I can’t sit in a room and allow someone to marginalize me or silence me or are try to cut me or my people down or any people of color. Because I’m in the room, I know that change is happening. And I know that change will continue to happen because we’re not going to let it stop.”

Find out more about Black to Broadway and the Broadway Celebrates Juneteenth concert here.

Hailing from Charlotte North Carolina, born litterateur Ezekiel J. Walker earned a B.A. in Psychology at Winston Salem State University. Walker later published his first creative nonfiction book and has...