Backstage Pass with Lia Chang

Will Calhoun’s solo exhibition AZA at Casita Maria Gallery, on view through July 21

Casita Maria Center for Arts & EducationDancing in the Streets and City Lore in collaboration with SceneFour and KCC Productions are presenting multi-Grammy award winning, Bronx musician, composer and artist-photographer Will Calhoun’s solo exhibition AZA through July 21st at Casita Maria Gallery. As part of his artist opening reception on April 22nd, Calhoun played a selection of compositions that are the basis of AZA. Both Calhoun’s exhibition and performance is part ofthe South Bronx Culture Trail Fusion Fest 2016: Lookin’ Up in the Boogie Down which kicked off on April 16 and runs through May 22, 2016. Casita Maria Gallery is located at 928 Simpson Street, 6th Floor, Bronx, NY 10459

Will Calhoun, Ethel, [detail], 2014

Will Calhoun, Ethel, [detail], 2014

On view in the gallery through July 21st is Calhoun’s AZA collection of vividly interpretative prints that visualize the physicality within the creation of his music as well as embody the underlying poetry, psychology and socio-political concepts behind his cross-disciplinary artistic practice. Through the interplay of percussion, color and light, Calhoun transforms his signature style and original compositions into multimedia-based, abstract expressions of his rhythms onto canvas.

Photos and Video: Will Calhoun Performs at Opening Reception for Solo Exhibit AZA at Casita Maria Gallery, currently on view through July 21

The languages within the aural, kinesthetic and visual arts have the capacity to “speak” to the viewer-listener in ways that verbal communication cannot achieve. Throughout the AZA collection (2014) there is an interdisciplinary synthesis between all three of these diverse aesthetic vocabularies. Together they define the underlying narratives woven throughout Calhoun’s expansive musical repertoire, translating his ideas, methods and rhythms into graphically dynamic digital images with a vernacular all his own.

Gallery Hours Mon-Fri: 10 AM – 6 PM Sat-Sun: By appointment. For more information and updates, check out


Will Calhoun. Photo by Lia Chang

Will Calhoun. Photo by Lia Chang

WILL CALHOUN is a two-time Grammy award winning drummer, composer and producer from the legendary rock band Living Colour. He has composed, produced, and toured with Wayne Shorter, Pharoah Sanders, The Rolling Stones, Yasiin Bey aka Mos Def, Lauryn Hill, Marcus Miller, Herb Alpert, Mike Stern, Public Enemy, Paul Simon, Stanley Jordan, Oumou Sangare, Jaron Lanier (virtual reality inventor) and many more. Calhoun’s unique approach to both acoustic and electronic drumming makes him the foremost percussionist on the scene today.

Calhoun spends most of his limited down time in West and North Africa researching ancient rhythms and musical styles. He is presently working on a recording with Indigenous sacred musicians. He is one of the world’s leading Ethnomusicologists, combining his expertise and ancestral research with many years of commercial success in jazz, rock, urban, alternative, ambient, and other music of the world into a beautiful, swirling expression of life.

He has recently broadened his artistic expression to include film scores, photography and multimedia projects including “AZA,” a collection of vivid, abstract prints that visually capture his signature rhythms. His online gallery is available for viewing at He just released his new jazz project “Celebrating Elvin Jones” on Motema Music and is presently in the studio with Living Colour recording their latest CD titled “SHADE” for MEGAFORCE records due to be released in the Fall of 2016.

Related Articles
Drumhead Magazine: Living Colour Drummer Will Calhoun, Photos by Lia Chang 
The Will Calhoun Trio Celebrates “Life in This World” CD Release at Blue Note, May 17-19, 2013
Living Colour Vivid 25th Anniversary US Tour in New York, Chicago, Toronto, Washington D.C. and More 
Living Colour Vivid 25th Anniversary US Tour – Spring 2013
Living Colour NYC Concert Photos 
2013 NYC Winter Jazz Fest: Will Calhoun Performs at Zinc Bar on 1/10, The Bitter End on 1/12 
Catch Grammy-winning Drummer Will Calhoun in August at The Iridium, Jazzmobile Summerfest 2012, The Blue Note, Hudson Valley Jazz Festival, and Wimbash
New York Winter Jazz Fest: The Will Calhoun Quartet with Donald Harrison at Zinc Bar on January 7, 2012 
Will Calhoun Trio to Perform at International Percussion Festival, 10/22-24/11 in Opole, Poland 
Will Calhoun Trio in Free Jazzmobile Concert at Morningside Park in New York on August 18
Will Calhoun to Interview Bernie Worrell at ASCAP’s “I Create Music” Expo on April 30 in L.A.
Will Calhoun’s Native Lands Experience featuring Ronnie Laws on sax at Anthology in San Diego on April 1
Will Calhoun Concert Photos at Chelsea Art Museum
Will Calhoun in New York tonight at Chelsea Art Museum and the Highline Ballroom on Friday
Living Colour performs at the Highline Ballroom on 10/30
Multimedia: Oumou Sangare, Will Calhoun at Central Park Summerstage
Oumou Sangare on North American Tour
Charnette Moffett Trio in Dobbs Ferry Music Series
Charnett Moffett Trio The Art of Improvisation CD Release Party at Iridium 
Will Calhoun’s Native Lands Experience Live at the Blue Note in NYC
Will Calhoun Tours with Unified Presence and Living Colour in Europe
Francis Mbappe and Will Calhoun Duo at Zinc Bar

Lia Chang. Photo by Garth Kravits

Lia Chang. Photo by Garth Kravits

Lia Chang is an actor, a multi-media content producer and co-founder of Bev’s Girl Films, making films that foster inclusion and diversity on both sides of the camera. Bev’s Girl Films’ debut short film, Hide and Seek was a top ten film in the Asian American Film Lab’s 2015 72 Hour Shootout Filmmaking Competition, and she received a Best Actress nomination. BGF produces multi-media content for artists, actors, designers, theatrical productions, composers and musicians. Lia is also an internationally published and exhibited photographer, a multi-platform journalist, and a publicist. Lia has appeared in the films Wolf, New Jack City, A Kiss Before Dying, King of New York, Big Trouble in Little China, The Last Dragon, Taxman and Hide and Seek. She is profiled in Examiner.comJade Magazine and

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

Follow Backstage Pass with Lia Chang on
%d bloggers like this: