Roots and Beats Project fosters positive youth development through media arts education and cultural engagement. Our curriculum merges tradition and technology to weave culturally rooted digital storytelling focusing on immigrant, refugee and ethnic diaspora experience. We work in collaboration with local nonprofits and schools to provide music and multimedia workshops at no cost to underserved youth ages 12-21 years old. We strive to make all of our curriculum culturally responsive and trauma informed, aspects crucial to meet our students where they are. We believe that when young people feel safe expressing themselves creatively, embracing cultural diversity, and bonding with adult mentors, it unlocks a great potential for the development of wide ranging skills and competencies for future community leaders.
Currently, we are organizing for an 8 week artistic mentorship series for 12 Native youth at NAYA Early College Academy- a culturally specific alternative highschool for students struggling in typical public education settings. Mentorship will include a mix of Native folk arts, acoustic and electronic music, and video creation exploring the multifaceted themes of Native identity, tradition and culture in an urban context. The twice-weekly sessions will be hosted partially at NAYA campus, and will include field trips to professional recording studio, digital music studio, and video production studio. We will invite guest musicians and cultural performers to share their art, and work with the students to record audio samples and footage for use in the creation of original electronic compositions and accompanying video. We will facilitate lessons, working side by side with the students in realization of finished works. Final public presentation will feature video installation and music with performances from collaborating artists to celebrate Native visibility
Funded by Portland, OR (September 2019)