With so many recreation centers closed in Baltimore city, the Fashion Umbrella Foundation along with recording artist from Baltimore, Nelly Hendriiix have created a program that offers a judgment-free space devoted to high school students who have an appreciation for the arts and live performances. The program dedicated to this group of individuals is the Fashion Umbrella Foundation’s Youth OPEN Mic Series (#BmoreYOM).
An interview, with Chance The Rapper and Gayle King on CBS This Morning, sparked the idea to inject a program like Social Works Chi’s “OpenMike” in Baltimore. Social Works Chi, is the Chicago based non-profit organization co-founded by Chance The Rapper. Social Works Chi’s mission is to empower youth through the arts, education, and civic engagement while fostering leadership, accessibility, and positivity within the youth throughout Chicago.
The Youth OPEN Mic Performance Series is for students beginning at the 9th grade up until the age of 19. Each student will have three (3) minutes to perform. Performers can recite, cipher, dance, showcase, or play an instrument. Anything under the category of the Arts is accepted, as long as the performance is not longer than three (3) minutes.
“As I was on my way to an appointment the interview with Chance The Rapper and Gayle King stopped me in my tracks. Not only am I a fan of the two individuals, but I am also a huge fan and advocate for youth. Here in Baltimore, there aren’t many outside activities available to high school students and especially that are FREE, so we [Nelly Hendriiix] and I thought why not and so we did. We are very excited about this program for youth.” Stated Sharan Nixon, Founder of Fashion Umbrella Foundation.
Students from the following high schools and university will performed Saturday. September 15, 2018. Seniors who graduated in June 2018 and youth up to the age of 19 are welcomed and encouraged to perform. Schools represented so far are:
Baltimore City College - Coppin State University - Franklin High School
George Washington Carver Center for Arts & Technology - Patapsco High School
Paul Laurence Dunbar High School - Shepherd University - Thurgood Marshall Academy
The Youth OPEN Mic Performance Series is a monthly program and will return on March 21, 2019 at 4PM in honor of Christopher Wallace's (Notorious B.I.G. or Biggie Smalls') birthday. YOMers should be prepared to perform in honor of Biggie. The Youth Open Mic for March 21 will take place at the War Memorial building located at 101 North Gay Street, Baltimore, Maryland.
To register for the Youth OPEN Mic Performance Series visit its website www.youthopenmic.com.