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Performing Arts – RYSE
The Media, Arts, & Culture Department promotes community healing and social justice by facilitating young people's innovative creation of political, personal, and expressive media and art. We elevate youth voice by providing access to industry-standard media equipment and professional development training in the areas of video production, music, visual arts, and performing arts.

Sample of Programs and Services Offered:

  • Spoken Word—Writing Dreams Into Reality: This workshop series introduces members to the style of performance poetry known as spoken word. Youth interpret and analyze poetry, stories, videos, song lyrics and other texts, exploring the ways that language can be used to spark social change and spread awareness of important community issues. This is a beginning and intermediate level spoken word workshop for youth who want to map out their hopes/dreams/goals through poetry. Participants improve their writing skills by learning poetic devices and techniques for engaging their audience.
  • Phoenix Rysing: Phoenix Rysing is a spoken word workshop for youth specifically seeking a space to cultivate and improve their writing skills while identifying trauma and using art to process and heal. Participants discuss issues relevant to today’s youth and exchange experiences of injustice through poetry. This intensive promotes healthy relationships, self love, coping skills, and hope for a better future. If interested, youth participants with be provided a variety of performance opportunities to share their work publicly.
  • Richmond Renaissance: This year’s multimedia theatrical production is geared towards youth who are interested in writing, acting, dancing, and/or performing in a play. Richmond Renaissance is a period piece set in Richmond during the vibrant 1950s during an era of Blues, Jazz, Zydeco, juke joints, and the celebration of creative and artistic culture. The play looks at the beautiful history of Richmond and the changing nature of the community over time. It’s both a celebration of the past, and a look forward to the promise of a vibrant future for the city and it’s residents. This is a youth-led theater piece with room for youth contributions as writers, performers, and behind-the-scenes tech crew.
  • Dance Team: Dancers who audition and are selected for the RYSE Dance Team learn a variety of choreographed movements to music created by RYSE artists. Dance Team participants perform at various RYSE events, community events, and record their dances to be uploaded to media sites such as YouTube and Vimeo.
  • RYSE Lounge: Each Friday youth are invited to attend RYSE Lounge where hip beats and a rotating open mic create a cool ambience in a safe space for young people to hang out and perform original music, poetry, and dance.