Robeson 125 Celebration

Mark Doss and Paul Robeson

Saturday, April 1, 2023
Here I Stand: Paul Robeson’s 125th – Lincoln Center, NY (Invited guests)

Multidisciplinary artist Helga Davis hosts this musical tribute to the great man’s theatrical and recorded repertoire, performed by a selection of orchestra members from the New York Philharmonic and sung by the Grammy Award-winning operatic bass-baritone Mark S. Doss, a musical heir to Robeson’s complex legacy who makes his Lincoln Center debut at this event.

Mark Doss and Paul Robeson

Monday, April 3, 2023
Continuing Conversations on Race with filmmaker, Thomas Lee Johnson
Princeton Public Library
Presented in partnership with Not In Our Town Princeton
7:00-8:30 PM


Black on the outside screenshot

Wednesday, April 5, 2023
“Black on the outside” launch – Premiere of commissioned film and Freedom Garden campaign

The Paul Robeson House of Princeton YouTube channel

Paul Robeson and Christine Moore Howell

Wednesday, April 5-30, 2023 (Official opening on April 8th)
Exhibit: “A Prologue to the Chapters that Follow”: Princeton and Paul Robeson
Princeton Public Library

Today, Princeton celebrates Paul Robeson – the noted actor, athlete, scholar, and activist – as its “native son,” but in his writings, Robeson was often resentful towards the segregated Princeton of his childhood. The love and support he received from the town’s Black community, however, shone through – despite his complex relationship with the town – and remained a guiding force throughout his life.

This exhibition, developed in partnership with the Historical Society of Princeton, the Princeton Public Library, the Witherspoon-Jackson Historical & Cultural Society, and the Paul Robeson House of Princeton, uses Robeson’s own words to examine both sides of the Robeson-Princeton relationship and its evolution throughout his life.


Robeson House of Princeton board members
Robeson Exhibit

Saturday, April 8, 2023
Robeson Day in Princeton

The Arts Council of Princeton – Wreath laying program and Robeson site tour
10:00 AM – 12:00 PM

The Arts Council of Princeton (Invited guests)

Robeson 125th Community Celebration & Lecture with Dr. Jamese Williams & Guests (Hybrid event)

Princeton Public Library
On Becoming Gatekeepers of Our Truth: Honoring the Legacy of Paul Robeson During the Celebration of His 125th Day of Birth
2:00-3:30 PM

Partner event with Paul Robeson Cultural Center of Rutgers University 

Jakora Thompson, Moderator
Guest Panelist: Geralyn Williams of PACE Center for Civic Engagement of Princeton University

Event Replay

Official Opening of exhibit:  “A Prologue to the Chapters that Follow”: Princeton and Paul Robeson
Princeton Room of Princeton Public Library
3:30 PM

Developed in partnership with the Historical Society of Princeton, the Princeton Public Library, the Witherspoon-Jackson Historical & Cultural Society, and the Paul Robeson House of Princeton

Robeson film festival poster

Sunday, April 9, 2023
Robeson 125th Birthday
Easter Sunrise Service & Breakfast – Hosted by The Paul Robeson House of Princeton

The Witherspoon Street Presbyterian Church / Nassau Presbyterian Church Easter Sunrise Service at The Princeton Cemetery
6:30 AM – Easter Sunrise Service

Witherspoon Presbyterian Church
7:30 AM – Breakfast

Monday-Wednesday, April 10-12, 2023
Robeson Film Festival – Film screenings with moderated discussions
The Arts Council of Princeton
6:00-8:00 PM nightly (Free)


Monday: The Tallest Tree In Our Forest documentary by Gil Noble
Discussants: PRHP Board Members

Tuesday: Seven Square Miles with filmmaker, Lorna Johnson-Frizell, The College of New Jersey
Discussants: Lorna Johnson-Frizell, Hawa Mamalou and Abdul Mohammed

Wednesday: Here I Stand (film)
Discussant: 2023 Robeson Fellow, Serina Montero

Robeson House of Princeton board members

Saturday, April 15, 2023
Sweet Honey In The Rock – Partner event with The Robeson House of Philadelphia
Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts
7:00 PM




Robeson 125 sponsors and partners

Robeson Curriculum Exchange & Teach In

Robeson Teach In poster

Mon, Jan 16, 2023
10AM – 1PM
Princeton Middle School, Princeton NJ

Together with community partners, we are preparing to facilitate workshops about the life and legacy of Paul Robeson with educators and community members as part of our MLK Jr. Day of Service.

In collaboration with local schools, we will help build lessons for teachers ahead of our Robeson 125th programming, and help make Robeson a household name!


Roots & Branches of the 20th Century Black Arts Movement: Paul, Ossie & Alvin

Maya Bradley

Sat, Nov 19, 2022
1PM – 2PM
Arts Council of Princeton – Taplin Gallery


Paul Robeson was perhaps one of the most influential artists and social critics of the 20th century. His impact on the Black Arts Movement reaches across the globe and throughout time. The analytical framework used in the racial literacy and justice class at Princeton High School will be used to provide perspective on the life and legacy of Princeton’s Native Son.

The translation and transformation of [his] voice and likeness into the colorful visualization of dance has a resonant quality and characteristic that can only be described as an antiracist aesthetic.This presentation will elucidate how the iconic voice and presence of Paul Robeson influenced the artistry and storytelling of Ossie Davis and Alvin Ailey. Local artist Maya Bradley will perform interpretive dance alongside the lecture presentation of Dr. Joy Barnes-Johnson, Program Chair of the Paul Robeson House of Princeton and Princeton Public Schools Educator.

This event is held in collaboration with the Arts Council of Princeton.

Exhibit: Telling A People's Story: African American Children's Illustrated Literature

Telling A People's Story poster

October 1-30, 2022
Princeton Public Library
First and Third Floor

“Telling a People’s Story” is the first traveling exhibit devoted to the art found within the pages of African American children’s illustrated literature. The exhibition emphasizes the strength of the illustrations as visual narrative representations of the African-American experience and sheds light on the long-neglected world of African-American authors and illustrators in the pantheon of children’s literature.

This event is co-sponsored by The Paul Robeson House of Princeton.

For me, it is not the house, but what it represents. The Robeson House, like the Witherspoon Jackson neighborhood it anchors, is rooted in history but not locked in the past. The house stands proud and represents a future in which social justice issues are debated, programs developed, and community resources rallied to breathe life into the philosophy and legacy of Paul Robeson, a brave American patriot who used his many talents to fight for the rights and respect of all people worldwide.