Do you like Spoken Word Poetry and Hip Hop? Do you know that your voice matters? Do you feel like you have something to say to the world? Join us as we explore the legacy of griots, poets, and artists who through oral traditions were the keepers of the culture, the speakers of truth, and the writers of change.
Participants will study liberation artists and explore varying perspectives on gender and sexism, racism, and issues of social relevance that are of interest to them. Participants will share interpretations and reflections, and translate them into fresh rhymes!
This series is an invitation into a journey of self reflection. We will study the self, and share the parts of us that ache. We seek to speak to the places of vulnerability and the social violences that we are all affected by. It is a space to laugh, cry, dance, release emotions, and know you are not alone. It is a call to recognize our individuality, our greatness, and the power of the collective. It is a call into leadership. The workshop is not merely designed to develop literal capacity, but to develop our emotional intelligence and create a class driven culture that values holding a safe space where everyone feels valued and welcomed, and no one is excluded. It is a place where we can be who we are and celebrate who we are becoming.
Dates: July 16 – 27, Tuesday – Friday.
Time: 10:30am – 12:30pm.
Ages: 13 – 17.
Participants: 8 (10 maximum).
Break: Light refreshments and snacks will be provided.
Location and transportation:
Workshops will be facilitated at the Dan Berrigan Center in the Benincasa Community:
133 West 70th Street
New York, NY 10023
???? Trains: 1, 2, 3, B, C Trains to 72th Street
Benincasa Community is a lay community named for Catherine (Benincasa) di Sienna, the theologian, mystic, reformer, and peacemaker. Dedicated to the works of mercy and justice in an era thirsting for humanity’s collective recognition of unity and interdependence with all creation, Benincasa is grounded by faith, an emerging understanding of the new cosmology, the development of new economic models in our world, and the need for deepening relationships with the land and one another.
Facilitated by: Abraham Velazquez, Jr., A-B-E. Abraham completed his Master of Arts Degree in Educational Theatre at NYU, while studying Theatre of the Oppressed with Julian Boal in New York City, Barbara Santos in Berlin, Germany, and Sanjoy Ganguly in Badu and Kolkata, India. Abraham has facilitated his Rapademics and Instruments of Peace curricula with youth throughout The Bay Area, California and NYC.
Abraham has trained educators and organizers nationally and abroad at Universidad Internacional Menéndez Pelayo (Santander, Spain), La Casa Encendida (Madrid, Spain), The Cross Border Project in (Valladolid, Spain), El Simposio de Hip Hop Cubano (Havana, Cuba), American Space Madrid (Madrid, Spain) and Künstlerhaus Bethanien (Berlin, Germany) on how to engage communities in social justice and personal transformation through drama, poetry, and Hip Hop.
As a member of The Peace Poets, Abraham has organized youth conferences with The W.K. Kellogg Foundation, The American Civil Liberties Union of Mississippi, and National Youth Event (ACLU).
In 2007, Abraham toured his one-person production, Born Again! The Life of Richard F. Nicks throughout New York City, and authored the chapbooks Libra Libre and Thoughts From a Prophet. In November 2015, Abraham released his first solo album, A South Bronx Tale LP, which was engineered by Grammy Award recipient, Mikaelin “Blue” Bluespruce.
▶We ask that participants arrive 15 minutes early to participate in our gathering ritual before we enter the space together. Parents will be asked to submit permission slips that allow visits one block and a half blocks away from our Center to Central Park West for creative writing exercises.