Brooklyn Academy of Music hosts 34th annual MLK Day concert

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Crowds packed the Brooklyn Academy of Music to honor the late civil rights leader with their annual Martin Luther King Day concert.

Uplifting music and compassionate speeches filled the academy with racial harmony in light of the special day for the 34th consecutive year.

Each year the Brooklyn Academy of Music brings together civil rights activists, musicians and civic leaders to remember the life and legacy of Dr. King.

The keynote speech was delivered by Nikole Hannah-Jones who created New York Times magazine's acclaimed "1619 Project.”

“Ten years before I was born, it was legal to deny me the right to live where I want to live – to go to a public library,” says Hannah-Jones. “It was illegal for me to exist in several states because my mother is white and my father is black.”

The project discusses when slavery was first introduced to the U.S. and how the author feels it is a part of American history that is commonly overlooked.

Local leaders like Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams say the fight for racial equality continues to this day.

“We have tough times ahead of us,” says Adams. “We can't do it by pointing and demonizing each other. We’re in this together, if we like it or not. We have to build together and be about what Dr. King was about. It's not just about a conversation, it's about a destination of how do we live in this city together.”

Many in attendance say that while Dr. King made a lot of progress for civil rights during his time, they believe there's still a long way to go.

 

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