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Author Evening with Deirdre O’Connell

Posted on Monday 8 August 2022

Author Evening Harlem Nights with Deirdre O’Connell

The 1920s were a time of wonder and change, when Australians sensed a world growing smaller, turning faster and, for some, skittering off balance. American movies, music and dance brought together what racial lines kept apart. Sonny Clay’s Harlem Revue broke from the usual blackface minstrel fare, delivering sophisticated, liberating rhythms.

Author Deirdre O'Connell has delved into the story of how Sonny Clay’s Harlem Revue came to Australia, and how their tour went wrong when they were targeted by a secret militia, in her latest book, Harlem Nights: the secret history of Australia’s Jazz Age.

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