About this Event
The Just and the Blind
A Visions and Voices Signature Event
“A concert of voice, body, and musical and visual scores that collectively draw a map of Black parenthood and American justice.”—New York Times
Commissioned by Carnegie Hall and presented as part of the 2019 Create Justice forum, The Just and the Blind is a powerful multimedia experience that illuminates the unseen and under-heard experiences of incarcerated youth and their families. Artfully and powerfully combining live performance, short films, and honest conversation, spoken-word artist Marc Bamuthi Joseph, composer Daniel Bernard Roumain, and street-dance pioneer Drew Dollaz present an intensely personal and important exploration of racial profiling, the prison-industrial complex, and parenthood from the perspective of fathers of Black and Brown sons.
The Just and the Blind also features the work of the award-winning investigative journalist Lisa Armstrong, the provocative images of photographer Brittsense, and illustrations by Xia Gordon, woven together by media designer David Szlasa under the direction of Michael John Garcés.
Now adapted to an online event, this skillful illumination of the unseen and under-heard experiences of incarcerated youth and their families in America is as intimate as it is essential.
After the show, the audience is invited to stay for the first V&V Social on Toucan.events, a browser-based platform where we will meet up to chat, discuss, share, reflect, and connect!
Marc Bamuthi Joseph is a spoken-word poet, dancer, playwright, and educator whose bold, poetically driven work investigates social issues and cultural identity. He currently serves as vice president and artistic director of social impact at The Kennedy Center. He wrote the libretto for the opera We Shall Not Be Moved, which was named one of 2017’s “Best Classical Music Performances” by the New York Times.
Daniel Bernard Roumain (DBR) is a prolific and endlessly collaborative composer, performer, educator, and social entrepreneur. “About as omnivorous as a contemporary artist gets” (New York Times), DBR has worked with artists from Philip Glass to Bill T. Jones to Lady Gaga; appeared on NPR, American Idol, and ESPN; and collaborated with the Sydney Opera House and the City of Burlington, Vermont.
Drew Dollaz is a pioneer of flexing, a Brooklyn-based genre of street dance also referred to as bone breaking, which is characterized by rhythmic contortionist movements. A self-taught dancer, Dollaz blends flexing with other genres of movement, including ballet, to create a transcendent hybrid of movement artistry. He has performed and partnered with a broad range of artists and brands, including Madonna, Rihanna, Skrillex, Red Bull, Sony, Aloft Hotels, and Billboard.
Presented by USC Visions and Voices: The Arts and Humanities Initiative. Co-sponsored by the Center for Black Cultural and Student Affairs, the Black Student Assembly, Brothers Breaking B.R.E.A.D., and Stronger Than Hate.
Photo: Fadi Kheir
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