Starting on July 23rd, we will begin a two-week performing arts workshop with women at Riverside Correctional Facility (RCF). RCF is one of six jails in the Philadelphia Prison System. Our workshops empower communities of marginalized, incarcerated women in this jail and many others by expanding their pro-social skills (particularly confidence, empathy, resilience, and leadership) and faith. This creates communities of courageous leaders amongst the women who participate, the effects of which ripple out to the rest of the facility and, after they are released, into their home communities.
In each workshop, professional artists collaborate with 30 women from the correctional facility for two-weeks to develop a 45-minute performance of dance, music, drama, and spoken word. This performance presents an uplifting message of hope to other incarcerated people in the facility. During the workshop, SLM staff and artists work with inmates for seven hours per day, five days per week, in rehearsals, community building activities, reflection, and small group discussions on faith and self-awareness. All choreography, theater sketches, and spoken word pieces are original work, crafted by the participants from their own life experiences in a way that will powerfully touch their peers in the audience.
The two culminating performances take place on SLM’s full stage, set up in the facility’s gym, complete with a professional lighting plot, sound, and video projection. Each performance is accompanied by a professional band and is followed by an interactive feedback session between participating inmates and audience members.
This workshop is one of six workshops we are holding in 2018, and will be our fourth annual Impact Workshop at Riverside Correctional Facility.
Funded by Philadelphia, PA (July 2018)