An art auction, three different musical performances and an atmosphere fostering authenticity, community and overall good vibes will be radiating off the walls at the Stone Church in Newmarket this Friday for 4BeezInternational’s first fundraiser event.
The event opens at 7 p.m. on Friday, Nov. 15, and Queens-based musician Gloria Dlo will open the evening at 8, followed by the Boston-based singer/songwriter Lady Cap at 9:30. Headliner Paul Beaubrun – a Haitian musician born and raised in Port-au-Prince – caps the night’s performances at 11. Haley Burns, a senior University of New Hampshire (UNH) business administration major and local artist, will be auctioning off art she created for the event.
“Small details have changed throughout but what has been absolute is the idea of people of all different spaces coming together and being one,” Burns said. “Family and celebrating togetherness and love. Concerts are strangers becoming family.”
4Beez is a social venture founded this year by Martine Bruno (known on stage as Gloria Dlo) working toward non-profit status. Bruno grew up in Queens, New York, and is the daughter of two Haitian parents. A classically trained singer, Bruno has always held Haitian culture close to her heart in both music and other aspects of her life. “Dlo” means water in Creole – making her stage name “Gloria of the Water.”
“We just want to show people how beautiful Haitian culture and Haiti is, despite the media portrayal,” Bruno said. “This concert is one step in raising money for sustainability in Haiti through the 4BeezInternational program.”
According to Bruno, a 2015 study conducted by the CIA reported 71 percent of Haitian forests had been deforested. Because of the poverty that strikes Haiti, many residents don’t have access to (or can afford) a contemporary stove, resulting in the majority of cooking being done outside over a fire, which is the main cause of such high rates of deforestation.
The social venture is looking to tackle this issue with the introduction of biodigesters to the area. With this technology, Haitian residents will be able to use any of their organic material or waste and transform it into biogas and fertilizer. Biogas, a type of biofuel which is a byproduct of waste material decomposing, results in a mix of gases like methane and carbon dioxide that can be used as an energy source to fuel things like propane stoves. The digester will enable Haitian residents to avoid using fossil fuels, efficiently manage their waste material and use the fertilizer to help in the growing of food, while also substantially cutting down their reliance on firewood.
On top of the deforestation, the venture will be putting some of the money raised toward beekeeping in Haiti, hence the “4Beez” in their title.
Bruno first informed Burns about this program and idea after meeting her in California while recording music. Burns became completely enamored with the Haitian culture that Bruno described and agreed to not only create pieces of art to auction off, but also be part of the social venture itself.
“The stuff that I’ve made is specifically designed for them,” Burns said. “In the Voudon culture there are a ton of different Haitian spirits that I want to emulate through my art. This is my rendition on the culture, inspired by the stories that Martine has told me about.”
The two’s connection led to discussions of putting on a fundraiser to raise money and awareness surrounding sustainability in Haiti. “We had been talking about what we wanted to do and finally the conversation changed to ‘Why not do it?’, and out of that came this event,” said Bruno.
Around that same time, Burns and Bruno were introduced to Lady Cap, formally known as TaLia Piqué, at a festival in Maine this past summer where Pique was performing and Burns was doing a live mural.
“I wanted to find Haley and personally tell her that I loved her artwork,” Pique said. “At some point, her and Martine found me. They were super cool, and I thought they were literally the nicest people ever. I bought the massive art from Haley that day. Sometime later Martine had contacted me about 4BeezInternational and how they wanted to put on a fundraiser and have my band perform.”
With the foundation laid, Bruno looked no further than the Haitian-Jimi-Hendrix-Bob-Marley-mix of Paul Beaubrun to head the evening.
Beaubrun is a Haitian musician, born and raised in Port-au-Prince. He was introduced to music by his parents, both of which are held in high regard for bringing social activism within music to the forefront of the culture. Being a part of this “royal music family” of Haiti, Beaubrun has shaped his reggae rock infused with traditional roots around representing the beauty of Haitian culture and transforming the public’s view on his native land.
“It’s a huge honor to have Paul perform for us,” Burns said. “He represents Haiti in such a strong way.
“I’m excited for the opportunity to create something beautiful for the children of Haiti and the Haitian culture,” Beaubrun said. “We are looking forward to introducing our culture and music to a new audience. A successful night would be to raise some money, to introduce Haitian culture and for people to see Haiti in a different light.”
Bruno explained that Beaubrun represents the millennial and Gen-Z generations of Haiti and their attempts to improve conditions on the country for generations to come. Beaubrun’s music and his focus on creating a more sustainable – but also economical – future for Haiti has inspired many, including Bruno, to take action for their native land.
“The kids want change—but the problem is, where is the money going to come from?” Bruno said.
“I am most excited about the energy of the night,” Pique said. “When music is mixed with a purpose, it means so much more. I think the mix of music from LadyCap, Gloria Dlo and Paul Beaubrun and Haley’s art will bring an unforgettable evening.”
“I want this to be an experience,” Bruno said. “The generations that are heading all this change are so authentic and value community. That’s what this night is all about. I hope people leave understanding a different culture. When you feel empowered the possibilities are endless.”
Tickets to the event are $20 and can be purchased at the door or online at stonechurchrocks.com. It is an 18+ event. All the money raised will go directly to the 4BeezInternational social venture.