Black Mountain Women


Martha Redbone and Aaron Whitby

Martha Redbone and Grammy-winner Aaron Whitby are a songwriting and production team currently devising interdisciplinary musical theater work that brings to light parts of American history that have never been told.

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Martha Redbone

Martha Redbone is a vocalist, songwriter, composer, and educator, known for her music gumbo of folk, blues and gospel from her childhood in Harlan County, Kentucky infused with the eclectic grit of pre-gentrified Brooklyn.

Artist Bio

Aaron Whitby is a London-born pianist, composer, and producer from London, England.

Artist Bio

Black Mountain Women is a devised, interdisciplinary theater work about a woman who returns for a funeral on Black Mountain, Appalachia—coalmining country and the main character’s ancestral homeland where her family has dwelled for centuries. The family is in imminent danger of permanent displacement due to strip-mining and mountaintop removal threatening their environment, echoing previous generations who were forced onto the Trail of Tears. As crisis threatens the family, Black Mountain Women moves between present day and dreams, a magical world where the ancestors and the tree spirits merge with the living, unearthing stories that change the lives of them all.


Discipline
Musical Theater
Award Year
2019
Status

In Progress

Redbone-Martha-Whitby-Aaron

Martha Redbone and Aaron Whitby

Brooklyn, NY

Martha Redbone and Grammy-winner Aaron Whitby are a songwriting and production team currently devising interdisciplinary musical theater work that brings to light parts of American history that have never been told. Their music production and record imprint, Blackfeet Productions, LLC has award-winning recordings included in the permanent Library Collection at the Smithsonian National Museum of the American Indian. The team has completed commissions for New York Voices at Joe’s Pub and Public Theater, New York Theater Workshop: Plurality of Privacy with Jim Nicola, and the Goethe Institute. They composed original music for Primer for a Failed Superpower by The TEAM, directed by Rachel Chavkin. Redbone and Whitby are recipients of the NEFA Grant, NPN Creation Fund and the Native Arts and Culture Award. Redbone is a 2015/16 Fellow of the Native Arts and Cultures Foundation.


Individual Bios

Aaron Whitby is a London-born pianist, composer, and producer from London, England.

Martha Redbone

Martha Redbone is a vocalist, songwriter, composer, and educator, known for her music gumbo of folk, blues and gospel from her childhood in Harlan County, Kentucky infused with the eclectic grit of pre-gentrified Brooklyn.

Redbone-Martha-Whitby-Aaron

Martha Redbone

Brooklyn, NY

Martha Redbone is a vocalist, songwriter, composer, and educator. She is known for her music gumbo of folk, blues and gospel from her childhood in Harlan County, Kentucky infused with the eclectic grit of pre-gentrified Brooklyn. Inheriting the powerful vocal range of her gospel-singing African American father and the resilient spirit of her mother’s Cherokee/Choctaw culture, Redbone broadens the boundaries of American Roots music. With songs and storytelling that share her life experience as an Afro-Indigenous woman and mother navigating in the new millennium, Redbone gives voice to issues of social justice, bridging traditions, connecting cultures, celebrating the human spirit. Redbone and Whitby are the 2020 Drama Desk Award recipients for Outstanding Music in a Play and the 2020 Audelco Award recipient for Outstanding Composer of Original Music and Score for Public Theater revival for colored girls who have considered suicide when the rainbow is enuff by Ntozake Shange. Redbone/Whitby are recipients of Creative Capital Awards, NEFA, NPN, NACF, MAPFund and NYC Womens Fund for Music.


Member of:

Martha Redbone and Aaron Whitby

Martha Redbone and Grammy-winner Aaron Whitby are a songwriting and production team currently devising interdisciplinary musical theater work that brings to light parts of American history that have never been told.

Redbone-Martha-Whitby-Aaron

Aaron Whitby

London, UK

Aaron Whitby is a London-born pianist, composer, and producer. Whitby is best known for his award-winning work with longtime collaborator/wife Martha Redbone, with whom he has co-written and produced her three award-winning albums Home of the Brave, Skintalk and The Garden of Love. Whitby is the brainchild of Cousin From Another Planet, a jazz/funk exploration purveying a playful approach to life and music rooted in Brooklyn but born far, far away. With tunes inspired by the animated energy and innocence of their young son, and humorous lyrics that celebrate empathy and empowerment.

Member of:

Martha Redbone and Aaron Whitby

Martha Redbone and Grammy-winner Aaron Whitby are a songwriting and production team currently devising interdisciplinary musical theater work that brings to light parts of American history that have never been told.