Dante Production to present gospel and holiday shows

Chauncey Dunham

I’m back from vacation and playing catch-up with plans from Dante Production and JAW Promotions. 

Chauncey Dunham, COO and vice president of Dante Production, LLC, returned to the drawing board following a vacation to rejuvenate. He’s back with a collaboration of Dante Production and James Womack of JAW Promotions, an irresistible synergy which proves productive. The 2019 and 2020 calendars were developed to add diversity and spice.

The first event is a Gospel Extravaganza, Nov. 2, at a popular venue – The Ormond Beach Performing Arts Center, 399 North U.S. 1, Ormond Beach. 

A Pre-Holiday Show spans time with doo-wop, R&B and Latin, and all with pure soul. That’s Dec. 7 at The Center at Deltona, 1640 Dr. Martin Luther King Blvd., Deltona. 

The February 2020 show, also slated for Deltona, will be a tribute to “Aretha Franklin, Selena, Whitney Houston,” and others. 

Then forward with an exciting “Strings & Things’’ on April 25 at the Bank & Blues Club on Main Street, Daytona Beach. 

May 2020 will feature a “Groove on the Grass at Sunset.” 

Some of the performances will contain more information in upcoming editions. 

Moreover, during downtime, creative juices were flowing, which led to a new cast of songwriter Ronnie Mitchell, stage managers, and musicians representing “Dante’s Pride.” 

Entertainment doesn’t get any better than this!

Chauncey Dunham
COURTESY OF WANDA BRINSON WHITE
Club member Virene Garrett and daughter Eraina are all smiles at the Denim and Diamonds Dinner Dance(Left). Natalie, Luz Curras and Sabrina Weaks, who’s also an event planner, enjoyed the vibrant sounds of deejay Jimmy Barnes(Right).

Different approach 

JAW Promotions has worked with Dante Production, LLC, to develop strategies that are different. 

The Dante approach changes from show to show and targets each event differently. 

JAW promotes each event in a manner that’s tailored to a Dante show, involving social media and a strategy that probably will sell 80 to 90 percent of the seats since the audience is diverse in age. 

Dunham said that strategies aren’t just different for each show, but sometimes, the approach changes from show to show no matter how close they are booked. 

The demographic is designed for people 45 and older.

“That was not necessarily the case in the early years. And so, we’re making movements of getting there,” said Dunham. 

Chauncey Dunham

Breaking down barriers

“If you’re between the ages of 23 and 38, you’re probably paying off your college debt, getting married – you’re probably having children, buying a house, and you’ve got a lot of obligations, not only with money, but in terms of time,” said Dunham. 

“The older audiences may have more financial resources and time to become more committed to shows of their choice. 

“Do we want a more diverse audience, or do we want a younger audience?” Dunham continued to ask. 

He said they have a lot of choices to make, and all of them good, as well as challenging. 

“There’s this stigma that everything in the arts is a black-tie, formal affair, and everything is very unapproachable. But that’s not true,” he said. “I don’t know that any arts organization has found a way to fix that. We are just trying to take the intimidation away. 

“It’s really fun to build connections,” Dunham added. “Not only do we encourage people to go to concerts, but the onstage musicians become friends, such as Skip, “Dante’s Pride,’’ and Daphne Cooper, “A Dante Diva.’’ 

“However, they’re just like us,” Dunham continued. “They go to the clubs, have a good time, and they love to laugh. They’re not always practicing for the next show.” 

There it is again. 

‘Ever-evolving process’

Dunham surmised that socializing, group experience, and bringing people together may be the key to simply sustaining music audiences for generations to come. 

“The great thing about music, generally speaking, is it doesn’t fit just one specific mold, right?” he inquired. “You can get all of these people, who might be completely different in the outside world, to come together and enjoy the same thing.’’

At the end of the day, Dunham proposes using multiple sources of communication – i.e. Facebook, email, and word of mouth.

“It’s an ever-evolving process with us at JAW and Dante. We’re having fun, and maybe it’s fun because we’re having some success.” 

Dunham shared a secret that a book titled “Dante Delight’’ is being proofread and a publisher is sought. 

***

The Elegant Ladies took it to the top, entertaining a recent Denim & Diamond Dinner Dance. 

The guests enjoyed a splendid dinner at Palm Coast Community Center and danced the night away to the vibrant sounds of deejay Jimmy Barnes. 

The Elegant Ladies are: Nellie Davis, president; Kim Hunt, Virene Garrett, Wanda Brinson White, Mattie DeVore, Barbara Greene, Pam Hulse, and Charlotte Prince.

***

The Flagler County NAACP meeting will highlight this month’s business owner Racquel Wyatt of Perfected Beauty, LLC. 

The month’s agenda is full, scheduling the first meeting after a hiatus and prior to the NAACP state convention. 

Each monthly meeting highlights a small Black business in the community. 

The meeting will take place Sept. 24, 6 p.m., at the African American Cultural Society, 4422 U. S. 1 North, Palm Coast. 

If there are questions, please direct them to 386-446-7822.

***

As always, remember our prayers for the sick, afflicted, the prodigal son, or daughter, and the bereaved. 

Celebrations 

Birthday wishes to: Dr. Kwando M. Kinshasa, Sept. 21; Maynard “Howie” Howell, Ellen Parker, Sept. 22; and Mandy Brooks, Sept. 23.

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