News & Press

The Triangle Tribune
‘Yolanda Hall Presents: An Afternoon of Jazz & Spirituals’
September 2014

RALEIGH – International jazz vocalist Yolanda Hall of Durham has a voice that is alluring, passionate and timeless. The mezzosoprano will present a special afternoon of jazz and spirituals during Sounds of Stagville: An Afternoon with Yolanda Hall Sept. 28, 2 to 4 p.m. at the N.C. Museum of History in Raleigh.

“This will be a musical experience,” said Hall who will begin with popular jazz tunes from the 1930s to the 1950s, songs by George and Ira Gershwin, Cole Porter and Fats Waller.

Later in the program, the vocalist will sing soul-stirring spirituals. Hall provided the soundtrack for the museum exhibit, Stagville: Black & White, featuring Dr. Brenda Scott’s photographs of Stagville State Historic Site in Durham. The soundtrack includes traditional Negro spirituals and “Echo of Stagville,” an original work.

Prior to the Civil War, approximately 900 slaves lived at Stagville plantation. As part of Sunday’s event, Ricky Hart, a descendant of slaves at Stagville plantation, will recite “Still I Rise,” by Maya Angelou. After the performance, be sure to stop by the exhibit gallery to meet Hall and Scott.

Hall was born in Brooklyn, New York, and grew up in Durham. She studied under renowned mezzosoprano Betty Allen at the North Carolina School of the Arts in Winston-Salem. She is a graduate of Saint Augustine’s University.While living in Durham, Hall met noted jazz pianist and arranger Yusef Salim, who spearheaded her efforts into the jazz world.

“It was my destiny to begin singing this style of music,” she said. “Jazz chose me. It was in my blood waiting to flow out.”

Hall has performed internationally with jazz luminaries such as Salim, Ben Tucker, Bob Alberti and Larry Price. She has appeared at the Pori Jazz Festival, the Jazz Corner, Le Manoir aux Quat’ Saisons and Storyville.

WUNC 91.5
‘Somehow Mrs. Warner Left Her Mark’
March 2014

“WUNC has been running a series called My Teacher. As a part of the series, students around the state are interviewing their teachers.

Brenda Scott is long out of school, but she’s been listening to our stories on the radio and wrote to say:

‘I cannot interview my teacher, because she passed away a few years ago. However, you will see her name as you enter Gallery B at the NC Museum of History, where my exhibit “Stagville: Black & White” is on display.'”

“…’Another teacher whose presence is felt in the exhibit is Mrs. McIver. On my first day at Jordan, she had me sit by Yolanda Hall – now a jazz vocalist. Yolanda recorded the soundscape for the exhibit that you will hear in the gallery,’ notes Brenda.

North Carolina Museum of History
Current Exhibit: ‘Stagville Black & White’
March 2014

“Connecting the past with the present, the exhibit Stagville: Black & White presents Stagville State Historic Site in Durham through a different lens. The photography exhibit shows the beauty and resilience of the structures and of the people who lived and worked in them. Stagville: Black & White will run through Jan. 25, 2015, and admission is free.”

“…Listen in the exhibit for music that was recorded by jazz vocalist Yolanda Hall at Stagville in the Bennehan House. The songs include traditional Negro spirituals and “Echo of Stagville,” an original work. Click on the song to hear Hall sing “I’ve Been ’Buked, and I’ve Been Scorned” and “Echo of Stagville”.

WCom103.5 FM
Courage Cocktail Radio Show: ‘Community Radio Promotes History Lesson from Stagville Plantation’
March 2014

Courage Cocktail Radio Show, hosted and produced by Lee Anne McClymont on Wednesday’s at NOON ET, was honored to feature the photography of Dr. Brenda Scot. Dr. Scott’s collection of photographs called, “Stagville Plantation: Black and White,” opens at the NC Museum of History in Raleigh, NC on March 1, 2014.

The Courage Cocktail Radio Show titled, “Voice and View,” supports the exhibit. The NC Museum of History website promotes Courage Cocktail Show #100: Historic Stagville: Black and White to engage and develop their visitors’ experience with the exhibit.

In addition to Dr. Scott’s photographs, Courage Cocktail showcased the stunning vocals of Yolanda Hall who performed live in the WCOM radio studio as a soundscape to Dr. Scott’s photographs. Speaking on behalf of the Historic Stagville Plantation was Beverly McNeil, Stagville Board Member, who provided the historical context of Stagville Plantation. Exhibit opens at the NC Museum of History, MARCH 1, 2014.

Fox 50 News
Tar Heel Talk: ‘Historic Stagville’
February 2014

Dr. Brenda Scott, Photographer
Beverly McNeill, President Elect, Stagville Foundation
Yolanda Hall, Jazz Vocalist

“This show focuses on a new exhibit that’s coming to the North Carolina Museum of History. Stagville: Black and White will feature more than 60 black and white images from Dr. Brenda Scott’s photographic study of Stagville, once the largest plantation in North Carolina. The exhibit will be on display from March first of 2014 through Jan. 25, 2015.”