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Black Artists' Networks in Dialogue (BAND) and TD are once again celebrating Black History Month with the 2014 Then & Now Series

TORONTO, Jan. 21, 2014 /CNW/ - In celebration of Black History Month, Black Artists' Networks in Dialogue (BAND) and TD present Then & Now, a series of inspiring cultural events showcasing the past and present accomplishments of Black Canadians in six cities from coast to coast.

The 2014 Then & Now series features a dynamic lineup of arts and cultural events including theatre, concerts, exhibitions, live performances and symposiums by Canadian and international artists. Events will take place in Vancouver, Calgary, Toronto, Montreal, Ottawa and Halifax, and give Canadians an opportunity to gain a deeper understanding of the contributions and achievements of those of African ancestry.

The series, curated by BAND, runs primarily throughout Black History Month in February with events starting as early as January 7, 2014 and extending to March 16, 2014.

Select 2014 programming includes Kuumba, Harbourfront Centre's three-day festival in Toronto showcasing a rich blend of Caribbean and African sounds and flavours by emerging Canadian and international artists; Ottawa's Speaking of Black Hockey, a visual and oral celebration of the soul of Black hockey; Black Strathcona, an interactive new media project, celebrates Vancouver's Black community that thrived in the east-end neighbourhood from the 1920s to the 1970s; and The Mother Club Stage Play, a story that combines the rich traditions of rural Black Nova Scotia with a fictional tale of survival.

"Connecting Black culture to Canadian communities through the arts is a priority for us at BAND. Through meaningful collaboration with TD, we were able to develop the 2014 Then & Now series which features over 60 multidisciplinary projects, celebrating Black arts, culture and heritage," says BAND Chair, Karen Carter. "We hope this year's programming will educate and inspire Canadians to develop a better understanding of Canada's Black cultural communities."

"TD is proud to celebrate Black History Month with the Then & Now series, which has become one of the most prominent cultural celebrations in Canada," says Scott Mullin, Vice President, Community Relations, TD Bank Group. "Since 2008, TD's goal has been to help established and emerging artists further develop Black arts and culture and to celebrate the many accomplishments of Black Canadians."

Now in its seventh year, Then & Now has showcased more than 300 Black History Month events, and this year, has expanded west to include events in Calgary and Vancouver. The official 2014 media launch will open the Then & Now series on January 21, 2014.

About Black Artists' Networks in Dialogue:

Black Artists' Networks in Dialogue (BAND) housed at the BAND Gallery and Cultural Space located in the Complex at 1 Wilshire Avenue in Toronto, supports, documents and showcases the artistic and cultural contributions of Black artists in Canada and abroad. BAND works to encourage dialogue among Black artists, cultural workers and the larger society to inspire, enlighten and educate through the arts. For more information, please visit: www.band-rand.com

About TD Community Giving:

TD Bank Group invests in communities in order to effect positive change in the places where it operates and where its clients and employees live and work. In 2013, TD donated over $74 million to support community organizations in Canada, the United States and the United Kingdom. In Canada, TD focuses on education and financial literacy, creating opportunities for young people and the environment. For more information, please visit www.td.com/corporate-responsibility.

SOURCE TD Bank Group

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