'Brings us all together': New Durham jazz lounge hopes to expand Bull City music scene

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Sunday, January 14, 2024
New Durham jazz lounge hopes to expand Bull City music scene
Missy Lane's Assembly Room opened Saturday night at its new location on E. Main Street in Downtown Durham.

DURHAM, N.C. (WTVD) -- It was opening night in Durham for a new jazz club hoping to make a splash on the music scene and also add to Bull City's appeal as a destination for visitors.

Missy Lane's Assembly Room opened up Saturday night at its new location inside a historic building at 310 E. Main Street downtown.

With standing-room-only and cozy candlelight, dozens gathered for their first jazz show.

The new lounge is a coffee house by day and cocktail and jazz lounge by night and the brainchild of Cicely Mitchell, channeling her experience from the Art of Cool Music Fest to making this space a home for jazz legends and upcoming artists alike.

"It's kind of our calling card, we try to find people that right when they're emerging and are on the cusp we want people to enjoy jazz in a very intimate setting," Mitchell said.

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It's exactly the kind of spot coming downtown Mayor Leonardo Williams wants to see more of, expanding arts in the Bull City.

"I'm a true believer in arts as a public policy I think that it centers humanity and brings us all together," Williams said.

But as it becomes a draw for visitors, not forgetting its local roots, they're planning for local groups like NCCU's jazz program to take the stage too.

And for longtime Durhamites, it's big enough to make the Bull City a jazz mecca but still small enough to feel like home.

"I imagine that it'll be a spot where you kind of see your friends, see your neighbors, see folks that love jazz, that just want to hang out," said Dawn Booker.