First Friday to Feature Writing History Program

First Friday to Feature Writing History Program Mainframe Studios | 03/17/2021

DeAn Kelly, a fellow of the Iowa Creative Incubator and CEO of Beyond Walls LLC, has launched a new program titled Writing History through a partnership with Station 1 Records. The program has empowered students in the Oakridge Neighborhood Creative Art Center to explore their dreams for the future through hip-hop and creative self expression.

During First Friday events on April 2nd at Mainframe Studios, DeAn and Oakridge Neighborhood youth will show off their video called "Success Is My Protest", which was developed out of Writing History workshops. Related merchandise including T-shirts, sweatshirts and notebooks will be available for purchase. All proceeds benefit the Oakridge Neighborhood Creative Art Center.

DeAn explained what went into developing the song.  "Students followed the Acronym "We D.I.G the V.I.S.I.O.N," which stands for 'Dreams Ideas Goals Values Inspirations Strengths Impacts Obstacles Needs'. They then worked collaboratively to write a rap song and choreograph a music video alongside  Emmett Phillips and Jordan Colbert."

The Writing History workshops were part of Oakridge Creative Art Center's push to develop curriculum that includes STEM and STEAM based learning, which can help bridge educational gaps for low-income learners. Oakridge Neighborhood  supports nearly 1,100 residents  99% of those residents are low income families. Oakridge provides a safe culturally diverse community, and their educational programming creates opportunities for students to participate in a variety of fine arts through hands-on workshops, field trips and interactions with local artists.