Make it funky

Jason Orr, creator of the multimedia extravaganza known as FunkJazz Kafe, has been a very busy man for the last four months. To commemorate the Kafe's 10th anniversary, Orr transformed the quarterly showcase of neo-soul-tinged art, fashion, dance and music into four, back-to-back monthly mega-events. The celebration, which began March 20, has included a more-stellar-than-usual lineup of surprise performances by luminaries such as Dionne Ferris, Talib Kweli, Floetry and Jill Scott, among others. Orr promises to roll out more top-tier talent when the festivities conclude Oct. 16.

"We're known for breaking new acts like India.Arie and Van Hunt, but this year I made the choice to lean to the more marquee acts," he says. "This last one is really going to be special."

Although he's managed to rope the big guns for on-stage appearances, Orr admits that audiences for the anniversary shows have fluctuated. "It's gone in waves," Orr says. "Some shows have been packed, but others have not met our expectations. The performances have been grand — all of them have been groundbreaking. But attendance [in general], and I've noticed this after 9/11, has been down."

Once the Tabernacle clears on Saturday night, FunkJazz will resume its normal quarterly schedule, so don't expect see Orr and Co. until 2005. While on hiatus, however, he plans to begin work on his next venture: FunkJazz TV. "Television in our future," Orr forecasts. "I plan to let go of some of the intellectual properties so that people can relive those experiences. We've hosted some of the greatest moments in music history and watching them again is incredible."FunkJazz Kafe touches down at the Tabernacle, Sat., Oct. 16, at 10 p.m. $25.