Event Archives

Music in Your Gardens:
Shirlette Ammons

We’re proud to present Shirlette Ammons as a part of Music in Your Gardens, a free eight-week online concert series showcasing nationally renowned artists who call Durham and the surrounding area home. The series shifts Duke Performances’ longtime summer series, Music in the Gardens, normally held outdoors at Sarah P. Duke Gardens on Duke’s campus, to an online format in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic.

On July 15 at 7 PM ET, we’ll premiere a new, specially recorded performance by Shirlette online, free of charge, on our website and on our YouTube page. The film, pre-recorded in a socially-distanced manner, will be accompanied by a live YouTube chat with Shirlette, who will answer questions from viewers. Before sitting down to watch the performance, click here to read our chat with Shirlette on her album-in-progress, Spectacle, and the changing nature of the stories we tell ourselves.


Shirlette Ammons is a musician and poet based in Durham. In 2011, she worked with Chapel Hill rock band The Dynamite Brothers to record the smoky, genre-bending EP And Lovers Like, which premiered at Duke Performances’ Music in the Gardens. Ammons’ latest release, Language Barrier, travels from one genre — hip-hop, R&B, folk, indie rock — and then segues to the next, diffusing the borders between musical categories. To realize her project, Ammons collaborated with a number of acclaimed Durham musicians, including Hiss Golden Messenger, H.C. McEntire, Phil Cook, and Amelia Meath, as well as The Indigo Girls and Meshell Ndegeocello. Ammons is practiced with the conceptual — her hip-hop album, Twilight for Gladys Bentley, re-envisions the life of the lesbian blues singer — and she conjures worlds with her sound.


  • Wed, Jul 15, 2020 at 7:00pm