BergenPAC Hosted Performance and Educational Workshop for Children with Disabilities
Hip Hop Connections featured 4 performers who demonstrated/educated using the creative elements DJing, MCing, Human Beatboxing, Breaking, Popping, and Graffiti Art. These artists have experience working with students with special needs and created accessible/interactive sections that encouraged participation. Students had the opportunity to Beatbox, dance, use DJ equipment, and create in groups and individually.
MC/Beatboxer Baba Israel engaged students by discussing the history of Hip Hop in rhyme and creating interactive improvised poetry that responds to their imaginations.
DJ/Bassist/Beatboxer/Graffiti artist Yako 440 played examples of Hip Hop music from around the world and taught Beatboxing (making music with your mouth). This helped integrate articulatory phonetics which are important for those who need to develop verbal ability.
Dancers Ken Fury and Africano demonstrated Breaking and Popping respectively and brought audience volunteers onstage to learn some moves.
An educational component immediately followed the performance led by the artists with students from the Union City school district with disabilities. This portion of the program was also a huge success. Every student was brought onto the bergenPAC main stage to participate. At the end of the workshops, they each gave a word to describe their experience. “Confident, excited, energetic” were words used and subsequently turned into a rap for everyone’s enjoyment. Teachers were thrilled with the program and level of participation of students who are normally less verbal and introverted.
About Arts Horizons
For over 37 years, Arts Horizons has impacted the lives of more than 9 million children and adults through the power of the arts. Located in Englewood, New Jersey, Arts Horizons is committed to making the performing, visual, literary and media arts and artistic expression equitable and accessible to diverse people of all ages and abilities. In 2008, Arts Horizons opened the Arts Horizons Leroy Neiman Art Center in Harlem, NY, to celebrate and strengthen the community through the arts, and provide programs, exhibitions, screenings, performances and public talks for Harlem residents of all ages. Arts Horizons is funded in part by the New Jersey State Council on the Arts, with whom they co-sponsor the NJ Artist/Teacher Institute (aTi). The acclaimed Artist/Teacher Institute immerses classroom teachers, educators and artists in hands-on workshops in the performing, visual, literary and digital arts. Led by master teaching artists. aTi participants discover new pathways to creative teaching and learning in and through the arts while igniting their artistry and connecting with a community of peers. For more information, “Like” Arts Horizons on Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/ArtsHorizons), follow us on Twitter @artshorizons1and visit our website www.artshorizons.org