Arts & Entertainment

Community Voices Heard Concert Fundraiser at Jazz Forum: January 31

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Increased political activism in the lower Hudson Valley has resulted in activists from different communities working together to support a wide range of initiatives.  Community Voices Heard (CVH)’s Jazz and Soul Night, on January 31st at Tarrytown’s Jazz Forum (1 Dixon Lane), is one such collective effort.

The event is a fundraiser to support CVH, which organizes low-income communities in the lower/mid-Hudson Valley and NYC to address economic, racial and social justice issues.  In addition to food and drink, the evening will feature performances by Harlem’s favorite soul singer and three-time winner of Live at the Apollo, James “Petawane” Burris.

Jazz and Soul Night is the brainchild of Irvington resident Peter Bernstein, a founding member of Irvington Activists and a CVH board member. “Combining musical performance in Westchester’s top jazz club with fundraising for the important work of CVH is a natural for bringing our diverse communities together for a special evening,” he said.

CVH is a non-profit, member-led, multi-racial organization principally comprised of women of color and low-income families in New York State. CVH tackles tough issues and builds power to secure racial, social and economic justice for all New Yorkers through grassroots organizing, leadership development, policy changes, and creating new models of direct democracy.

This past year, CVH member-leaders in the Westchester chapter won the largest expansion of rent stabilization in New York State in over two decades through the passage of the Emergency Tenant Protection Act in the village of Ossining. CVH member-leaders also fought for, and won, the first official Affordable Housing Needs Assessment in over a decade in Westchester.

Joining Bernstein in hosting the CVH Jazz and Soul Night are Tarrytown native Lisa Piedimonte Bergman (founder of Tarrytown-based Social Action Supper Club) and her husband and fellow activist Jeff Bergman, Peekskill resident Robert McCreanor (head attorney with the Workers Justice Center of New York), and Irvington residents Sarah Cox (President of Friends of the Irvington Library) and Paula Romanow Etzel (Co-chair of the Irvington Democratic Committee). The host committee is working closely with Ellen Prior, General Manager of the Jazz Forum, to make sure that the event is a special evening.

Lisa and Jeff are raising their two boys in Tarrytown, in part due to its diverse population. “Tarrytown is a shining example of a large community that is culturally and socio-economically diverse and works hard to protect and support one another, “ said Lisa, who helps local families fight food insecurity with the help of her Tarrytown Supper Club members. “And this is tightly aligned with CVH’s goal to build power with low-income residents to fight and speak out for real systemic change. Day after day I am astounded by the actions of the community to fight for what is right.”

For tickets or to become a sponsor, visit: (Purchased tickets can also be donated so that CVH members who can’t afford the ticket price can attend the event.)

For more info, contact Julia Solow at 914-514-7632 or

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