project leader
Elissa C
Washington Ave
(Morrisania )
latest update rss
No updates yet.

the project

Singer, Elissa Carmona will collaborate with Morrisania Band Project to create and produce Natural Woman, a series of six public concerts that celebrate the life and music of iconic soul singer Aretha Franklin. Commissioned by Bronx Council on the Arts, the concerts will run at two city parks, Lehman College, and Bronx Music Heritage Center from June through December 2019.  

Known as the "Queen of Soul", Aretha Franklin’s music transcends race and culture on a global scale. Carmona frequently covers Franklin’s music to enthusiastic audiences, and foresees that a full tribute will be well-received in the Bronx. Goals are to honor the musical impact of a legendary performer, reach a diverse audience, and strengthen the Bronx’s art culture.


the steps

Natural Woman will debut at Rev Lena Irons Unity Park in June, Mullaly Park in July, and Bronx Music Heritage Center in September. Three other Bronx performances will be scheduled and presented by December 2019. All concerts will be free and open to the public. Steps will include:    

  • Fundraising - Bronx Council on the Arts, Partnership for Parks, and Citizens Committee for New York City are all confirmed funders. Fundraising will be ongoing as needed.
  • Partnership building - Partnerships will include Bronx Music Heritage Center and 16th District Councilmember Vanessa Gibson, in addition to local businesses and community groups.
  • Scheduled rehearsals will take place throughout the tour at local rehearsal studios.
  • Marketing and promotion - Outreach efforts will consist of online promotion and flyer distribution throughout the Bronx beginning beginning June 4th until the tour concludes.
  • By June 1st, permits and licenses will be secured for all city parks events, as well as signed partnership agreements with other vendors/venues. A generator, sound technician and videographer will be used as needed.  



why we're doing it

Based in one of the country’s poorest districts, public arts projects enable civic-minded musicians to engage their community and use their talents to contribute towards neighborhood vitality. The Arts Educational Partnership says public concerts in urban areas promote creative thinking, problem solving, self-awareness, and cross-cultural understanding.

Carmona is the winner of the 2019 Arts Fund award and fiscally sponsored by Unique Projects, Inc./Pentacle, a NYS 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization ( In 2016, she founded Morrisania Band Project (MBP), an award-winning musical collective that adds vibrancy to the South Bronx through music, community engagement, and raises awareness for issues like sickle cell disease, gun violence, and hurricane relief. From June through October 2018, Carmona and MBP presented the “Unity Park Concert Series”, a five-concert series at Rev. Lena Irons Unity Park.


Disbursed Budget:

$75 - Special parks events permits ($25 x 3)
$135 - Sound permits ($45 x 3)
$5,400 - Band stipend ($900 x 6)
$679 - Marketing/promotion (6 events)
$175 - Concert banner

TOTAL RAISED = $6,700.00
ioby Platform Fee $35.00
ioby Donation Processing Fee (3%) $201.00

Original Budget:

  1. $75 - Special parks events permits ($25 x 3)

  2. $135 - Sound permits ($45 x 3)

  3. $675 - Generator rental ($225 x 3)

  4. $5,400 - Band stipend ($900 x 6)

  5. $1,200 - Sound technician ($200 x 6)

  6. $450 - Equipment transportation ($75 x 6)

  7. $750 - Marketing/promotion ($125 x 6)

  8. $175 - Concert banner

  9. $640 - Rehearsal space ($80 x 8)

ioby Platform Fee $35
ioby Donation Processing Fee (3%) $295



Sorry, but this project doesn't have any updates yet.


This is where photos will go once we build flickr integration


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