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JUNETEENTH

6 artful ways to celebrate Juneteenth

At the MFA, the first in-person event since March 2020 brings live music and a free outdoor movie

At the MFA, the first in-person event since March 2020 brings live music, a free outdoor movie screening, plus talks by artist-in-resident Rob Stull (who designed the Basquiat-themed banners currently displayed over the Huntington Avenue entrance).
At the MFA, the first in-person event since March 2020 brings live music, a free outdoor movie screening, plus talks by artist-in-resident Rob Stull (who designed the Basquiat-themed banners currently displayed over the Huntington Avenue entrance).Museum of Fine Arts, Boston

On Juneteenth, we celebrate the end of slavery in the United States. We reconnect with that very moment enslaved Black Americans learned of their emancipation. It’s a jubilant occasion that’s sure to have extra feeling this year, after all the isolation and hurt of the past 15 months. Here are six ways to mark the holiday with music, movies, and some artful reflection on the Black experience from the 1860s to today.

ONE NIGHT IN BOSTON This community celebration unites multiple cultural organizations in Roxbury’s Nubian Square for a tribute to Black Music Month. The celebration will include live music and the premiere of the short film “One Night in Boston,” highlighting local Black artists and organizations like Project STEP and Boston Children’s Chorus, which nourish the next generation. The film will also air on NBC10 and NECN on June 19, and rescreenings will take place on June 19 and 20 at Jazz Urbane Cafe. Friday, 6:30 p.m. Nubian Square, Roxbury. kingboston.org/juneteenth

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A.Z. MADONNA

Nicole Beharie, left, and Alexis Chikaeze in "Miss Juneteenth."
Nicole Beharie, left, and Alexis Chikaeze in "Miss Juneteenth."Vertical Entertainment

MISS JUNETEENTH When former beauty queen-turned-single mother Turquoise Jones enters her rebellious teenage daughter Kai into the local Miss Juneteenth pageant, tensions arise for the mother-daughter duo struggling to make ends meet. Will Kai win the pageant and follow in her mother’s footsteps? Find out at this outdoor screening of “Miss Juneteenth” (2020) on the lawn of the historic Loring Greenough House. This Sundance Film Festival hit, written and directed by Channing Godfrey Peoples, stars Nicole Beharie, Kendrick Sampson, and Alexis Chikaeze. $7. Friday, 8 p.m., 12 South St., Jamaica Plain. loring-greenough.org

KYUNG MI LEE

MFA COMMUNITY CELEBRATION The Museum of Fine Arts’ first in-person event since March 2020 brings a full day of outdoor festivities honoring Boston’s Black artists, scholars, and creative voices. Visitors can kick off the day with art-making activities and short talks by MFA artist-in-residence Rob Stull — he did the Basquiat-themed banners currently displayed over the Huntington Avenue entrance. The afternoon brings live music curated by Bams Fest, with the likes of Aleecya Foreman, Kasia Lavon, and SeeFour. The day ends with a free outdoor screening of Ahmir “Questlove” Thomson’s “Summer of Soul” music documentary (space is limited for the movie — arrive early to nab your spot on the lawn). The film, due for wide release July 2, is presented in partnership with Roxbury International Film Festival. Saturday, 10 a.m.-10 p.m. 465 Huntington Ave. mfa.org/event/community-celebrations/juneteenth

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KYUNG MI LEE

THE SLAVE NARRATIVE OF WILLIE MAE Artist-activist Ifé Franklin hosts the premiere of her short film “The Slave Narrative of Willie Mae” (adapted from her 2018 book by the same title) with a free Juneteenth event in Nubian Square. Franklin’s work of historical fiction, written in the voice of her own great-grandfather, tells the story of a 20-year-old Black woman in the mid-19th century as she journeys from enslavement to freedom. Also filling Nubian Square will be poetry readings, art activities, and an ancestor tribute wall. For those interested in experiencing Juneteenth from multiple perspectives, free shuttles will be running between Nubian Square, the MFA, and the National Center for Afro-American Artists. Saturday, noon-4 p.m. Nubian Square, Roxbury. www.ifearts.com

CHRISTY DeSMITH

Mezzo-soprano Veena Akama-Makia sings William Grant Still's "Golden Days" in the African Meeting House.
Mezzo-soprano Veena Akama-Makia sings William Grant Still's "Golden Days" in the African Meeting House.NEMPAC Opera Project

NEMPAC OPERA PROJECT This North End opera shop celebrates Juneteenth with a concert filmed at Beacon Hill’s historic African Meeting House, the oldest Black church edifice still standing in the United States. With a spotlight on vocalists Veena Akama-Makia, RaShaun Campbell, Kay Patterson, and Fred VanNess Jr., the concert highlights music by Black composers of the past 250 years, culminating in the world premiere of “If Singing Is Free,” a NEMPAC commission by local composer Mason Bynes. Premieres Saturday, 12:30 p.m. Available for rewatch until June 22, 12:30 p.m. www.nempacboston.org

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A.Z. MADONNA

FREEDOM FÊTE Want to get your groove on? Join Boston-born, Brooklyn-based DJ Dee Diggs for a virtual dance party hosted this year by deCordova Sculpture Park and Museum. DJs from around the US will celebrate musical innovations of the African diaspora, while raising funds for organizations that serve Black and brown women and trans people in Boston and beyond. Online Saturday, 1-5 p.m. thetrustees.org/event/62846/

KYUNG MI LEE


A.Z. Madonna can be reached at az.madonna@globe.com. Follow her on Twitter @knitandlisten. Kyung Mi Lee can be reached at kyungmi.lee@globe.com.