An Evening With! Previous Guests 2019

Share your love of Dallas history!

June 19

A Celebration of Juneteenth

With Donald Payton & the South Dallas Concert Choir

Donald Payton is president of the African American Genealogy Interest Group, which is a branch of the Dallas Genealogical Society.  Mr. Payton has spent more than 35 years tracing family histories and doing historical workshops across America. He is a former Dallas County Historical Commissioner who served on a special state committee to make June 19th an official Texas state holiday.  In addition, he has presented numerous Juneteenth workshops and programs in various states.  Mr. Payton has also been featured in national media news events and interviews.

Mr. Payton’s presentation will be followed by selections from The South Dallas Concert Choir. The South Dallas Concert Choir performs a diverse repertoire of classical music, show tunes, contemporary gospel, and Negro Spirituals.


May 8

Pedro Perez & Ballet Folklorico

Pedro Perez II, Alegre Ballet Folklorico founder and director, has been in Folklorico for 30 years. Born and raised in Oak Cliff, Texas, Pedro has always had a love for the artistry and beauty of Mexican and Latino Culture.

At an early age, Pedro was given the option to “give folklorico a chance” at Winnetka Elementary School to see if he liked it. He enjoyed it, but never expected it to take the turn that it took. In May 1988, Pedro’s parents found Manuel and Guadalupe “Wally” Godinez and the Ballet Folklorico Hispano de Dallas; quickly, Pedro was enrolled. It was with Hispano de Dallas and the hard work and effort of the Godinez Family that changed and shaped the admiration, love and dedication that Pedro has for Folklorico today! It was here that rhythm and technique was taught and blossomed. With Ballet Folklorico Hispano de Dallas, Pedro performed across the state in the most prestigious venues. In 1992, Ballet Folklorico Hispano de Dallas was given the honor of dancing for Her Royal Majesty, Queen Elizabeth II. Also in 1992, Pedro was asked to teach his fellow students at the Government and Law Magnet High School. In May of 1992 and May of 1993, he put the Law Magnet Cinco de Mayo dance program together for his school. In September 1993 Manuel and Wally decided to take a break from Folklorico. Pedro tried other local groups out, as well as flamenco, but his friends and classmates suggested he start a group outside the school. This began Alegre Ballet Folklorico.

Along with dance and choreography, Pedro has taken on the task of designing and making several of Alegre’s costumes. Pedro has been recognized for his work and collection of regional outfits and has begun to exhibit and discuss them. Outside of Alegre he has worked with TeCo Theatrical Productions as a costume designer, stage manager, and actor.

Pedro has taught in schools and recreation centers throughout the Dallas / Fort Worth area. He has been asked to judge several competitions and even given workshops in and out of Dallas. Although he never expected it to go this far, Pedro looks forward to knowing Alegre Ballet Folklorico will succeed with him and after him


April 16

Leonard Volk

Dallas Historical Society will present An Evening With Leonard Volk, moderated by his daughter Alison, as he discusses his family’s history starting with his family coming to Dallas in 1887, his father’s legendary stores, Volk Brothers, which began in 1890, growing up in Dallas and how it has changed, his illustrious career in architecture and his community service career where he made a difference in the Dallas community. Visitors can also view many of his photographs from Dallas past and present.

Items from the Dallas Historical Society’s Volk Collection will be on display. Volk will be selling and signing his book, Everyday, a collection of his photographs, after the talk


March 27

Nancy Lieberman

Nancy is a Basketball Hall of Famer, two-time Olympian, first ever female BIG3 head coach, second female NBA assisting coach, first Female Head Coach to lead an NBA or NBA Development League team when she led Dallas Mavericks’ D-League team, the Texas Legends, to the playoffs in their inaugural season, philanthropic leader and proud mom – Nancy Lieberman has been defying the odds since she was a young girl playing basketball in Harlem. Now in her career as an international motivational speaker, you won’t forget the experience listening to “Lady Magic,” a pioneer for women’s sports and ultimate game-changer in life, sharing stories that encourage performing each day at your highest level.


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