Church will host local premier of documentary

Union Congregational Church, United Church of Christ, 1118 Fourth St. N.W., Elk River will host a local premier of a new film Sunday, Jan. 20 in celebration of the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

The new documentary is about the life and music of the Rev. Gary Davis, called “Harlem Street Singer.” It is the first film to tell the little-known story of Davis, a ragtime and gospel musician.

Tracing his journey from the tobacco warehouses of the rural south to the streets of Harlem, the film is a portrait of an artist who impacted the musical landscape of folk music and endeared himself to musicians such as Pete Seeger, Bob Weir, Jerry Garcia, Jorma Kaukonen, David Bromberg, Bob Dylan and others.

In addition to interviews, the storyline features audio recordings from Woody Mann, acoustic guitar master. The film includes recordings from Mann’s guitar lessons with Davis, archival footage, rediscovered photographs, concert and informal musical sequences by Davis, as well as contemporary artists who have been influenced by him.

Woody Mann will be at Union Congregational Church for this event.

Tickets are $15 ($8 for students) and are available by calling the church office at 763-441-1203.

The church is also hosting a display of King-inspired artwork created by students of the Advanced Placement studio art class at Elk River High School. Their pieces will be on display until mid-February.