Safety Measures at BAM
Our top priority remains the health and safety of our audiences, artists, and staff.

Face masks are highly recommended at BAM. We will continue to update our policies in adherence with the latest health and safety guidelines and protocols.
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MLK Tribute
Mon, Jan 16, 2023
The 37th Annual Brooklyn Tribute to Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Presented by BAM and the Office of the Brooklyn Borough President Antonio Reynoso


Join us at BAM or via livestream for this beloved Brooklyn tradition, which rings in a new year with music, performances, and an urgent and timely call to action—Defending Democracy—led by keynote speaker Sherrilyn Ifill. The civil rights lawyer and former President and Director-Counsel of LDF (NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund) was one of TIME magazine’s 100 Most Influential People in the world in 2021.

BAM’s annual tribute to Dr. King encourages us to continue in his radical spirit, relentlessly defending true justice for all, and repairing injustices.

“Sherrilyn Ifill is a dazzling intellectual with an uncommon ability to analyze and frame the urgent civil rights issues facing our nation.”
—Bryan Stevenson, founder of the Equal Justice Initiative and author of the #1 New York Times bestseller Just Mercy: A Story of Justice and Redemption

GENERAL ADMISSION:  FREE. Tickets for the in-person event are free, and will be distributed on a first-come, first-served basis beginning at 8am on Monday, January 16 in the BAM Howard Gilman Opera House lobby. Please note that an RSVP does not guarantee entry.

The link to the livestream will be made available on on Monday, January 16. The livestream will not be made available after the program.

Face masks are highly recommended while at BAM. All performances will adhere to protocols developed in accordance with New York State regulations and in consultation with medical professionals for the safety of our artists, audiences, and staff. 


ASL Interpretation provided by Body Language Productions.

Interpreters for this event include Brandon Kazen-Maddox (lead of Body Language Productions team) and hearing interpreter Kathleen Taylor.

Please email with any questions.

January 2023
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Monday January 16, 2023
Performances no longer available.

Leadership support for BAM Access Programs
provided by the Jerome L. Greene Foundation

JL Greene

Leadership support for programming in the Howard Gilman Opera House and off-site programs provided by:

Howard Gilman Opera House

Leadership support for BAM Community programs provided by The Thompson Family Foundation

Leadership support for virtual programming at BAM provided by the Robert and Mercedes Eichholz Foundation

Major Sponsor of The 37th Annual Brooklyn Tribute to Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.:


Major Sponsor of Community Programming at BAM:

JL Greene

Brooklyn Borough President

 Sherrilyn Ifill
Sherrilyn Ifill served as the seventh President and Director-Counsel of the NAACP Legal Defense Fund (LDF) from 2013 to 2022, where she provided visionary and transformational leadership during one of the most consequential and intense moments in our nation’s history. She began her career as a Fellow at the American Civil Liberties Union, before joining the staff of the LDF as an Assistant Counsel in 1988, where she litigated voting rights cases for five years. For over 20 years, Ifill taught civil procedure and constitutional law to thousands of law students at the University of Maryland School of Law in Baltimore. Her 2007 book, “On the Courthouse Lawn: Confronting the Legacy of Lynching in the 21st Century”, was highly acclaimed, and is credited with laying the foundation for contemporary conversations about lynching and reconciliation. At critical moments during national political and civil rights crises, Ifill’s voice and vision have powerfully influenced our national dialogue. Among many honors, Ifill is the recipient of numerous honorary degrees, and was named one of TIME magazine’s 100 Most Influential People in the world in 2021. In 2022, she joined The Ford Foundation organization as a Senior Fellow and received the prestigious Brandeis Medal, named for Supreme Court Justice Louis D. Brandeis, and the American Bar Association’s Thurgood Marshall Award.
Sherrilyn Ifill
Allison Russell
Poet, singer, songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, and activist Allison Russell sings about deliverance and redemption, about the places and people and realizations that helped her survive and claim her freedom. The co-founder of Our Native Daughters (with Rhiannon Giddens, Leyla McCalla, and Amythyst Kiah) and Birds of Chicago (with JT Nero) unpacks her youth in searing detail on her Grammy-nominated debut solo album, “Outside Child”, named the #2 Best Album of 2021 by The New York Times.
Sing Harlem
Sing Harlem
Originally the breakout choir for Mama Foundation for the Arts’ School of Gospel, Jazz, and R&B Arts, this award-winning choir has flourished under the direction of Ahmaya Knoelle Higginson, serving as both a social impact initiative for young alumni and a commercial choir. They have performed at Lincoln Center, the Grammy Awards, and Saturday Night Live—among other destinations—and accompanied artists including Sting, Arianna Grande, and Madonna. All proceeds from their performances benefit the Mama Foundation’s music training programs, which are provided to the Harlem community tuition-free.