Black History Month & Black Arts in Chicago

It’s impossible to quantify the impact Black artists and creatives have had on Urban Gateways arts programs, and on Chicago, throughout our history – but we know we owe them deep appreciation for creating beauty, asking critical questions, and doing the hard and often unseen work of rewriting prevailing narratives.

During Black History Month we’ll continue to add resources, events, and organizations to support via this link, with a focus on Black artists, art forms, and arts organizations in Chicago. We’ll also be posting on social media (@UrbanGatewaysChicago on Facebook, @urbangateways on Instagram and Twitter). Please feel free to follow along and comment/tag us with additional resources.

Touring Artists

Shout out to the performing arts groups on our touring roster who’ve inspired thousands of young Chicagoans by sharing Black art forms & stories through their Urban Gateways Performances. Take a moment and learn about/follow/support them! (Website links below, plus Instagram handles where applicable.)

Bruce Henry & Band >> @bruceahenry
Joel Hall Dancers >>
Chicago Poetry Center / Poets with Class >> @chicagopoetrycenter
Chicago Dance Crash >>

Chicago-Based Arts Organizations

There are *many* incredible arts organizations around the city that are positioning Black art forms, artists, and stories at the center of their work; in honor of Black History Month, get to know / follow / donate to them!

Red Clay Dance Company >>
Black Ensemble Theater >>
Congo Square Theatre Company >>
eta Creative Arts Foundation >>
Muntu Dance Theatre >>

Little Black Pearl >>
Deeply Rooted Dance Theater >>
South Side Community Art Center >>
Gallery Guichard >>

Looking for ways to celebrate Black History Month in Chicago?

Check out this resource list from Choose Chicago >>

Thanks to school partners for sharing photos of Black History Month Touring Performances from February 2022!

“Breakin’ It Down: Hip Hop History” with Chicago Dance Crash at Nathan Hale Elementary School


“The Evolution of African-American Music: From Africa to Hip Hop” (Virtual Performance) with Bruce Henry & Band at Westbrook Elementary School