EXPLORING THE PROBLEM OF GANG VIOLENCE
“Any city that suffers from gang-culture should see this program. In less than one hour, it makes an unforgettable, perhaps life-changing, impact.” ~Scott MacClelland, Performing Arts Monterey Bay
CHECK OUT REVIEWS, ARTICLES, AND PRESS FOR EAST WEST
East West is a multidisciplinary performance piece inspired by filmed interviews with a wide variety of individuals touched by gang culture. East West blends rap and contemporary music, hip hop and contemporary dance, film and photography to look at why youth are attracted to gangs, the brutal reality of gang life, and how people find their way out. East West is moving, disturbing, and ultimately uplifting.
A group of powerful collaborators have joined forces to create a powerful reflection of the realities of gang life and the impact on families, communities, and society as a whole. East West looks at ways that dance and the arts can contribute solutions to the critical issue of gang activity that plagues the streets of Monterey County and countless cities around the nation.
Walter Ryce, writer for the Monterey Weekly, commented, “It’s a daring piece. It’s a serious piece. It’s a dark and difficult subject. There is the joy in it of seeing performance come together just so, there are affirmative messages awaiting, the players are all earnestly committed. It deserves an audience.”
Jones Welsh by William Roden/New Dawn Studios
For the third year in a row, The Violence Policy Center reported that Monterey County is the most violent county in California. East West is SpectorDance’s response to this shocking statistic and this critical community need. East West will integrate diverse perspectives from the arts, education, law, psychology, economics, government, and the unique voices of at-risk populations. East West will offer at-risk youth and first time offenders the opportunity for self-expression and community participation. A collaboration with Rancho Cielo, a learning and vocational campus for at-risk youth and young adults, has been integral in the creation of this work. First-hand accounts from students and staff have provided a window into the complex problem of gang violence and culture. East West opens this window, welcoming insight, action, and solutions.
Support East West
East West is a project that will integrate a wide range of perspectives and stories about the problem of gang violence. The very populations that are at risk will shape the direction of the project by contributing their voices and experiences about this issue. The music, break dance, hip-hop, and folkloric dance, and images either come from or are influenced by the targeted community. East West will build relationships among participants by interweaving interviews from at-risk youth, educators, law enforcement, and others in the community with creative adaptations from dance/poetry workshops. As artists, we know that the artistic process has the capacity to nourish, heal, and empower. It can inspire a sense of meaning and belonging to a larger community. Through words, movement, and music, audiences will be able to see that the performing arts are inclusive and available to tell anyone’s story.
East West is designed to bring key organizations and people together to exchange ideas, share perspectives, and invite underserved populations to invest in the potential impact of this collaborative effort. East West will integrate input from at-risk youth, educators, youth mentors, law enforcement, and others, beginning with contacts from Rancho Cielo. This collaboration and investment in the creation of this work from target populations will encourage audience building, participation, and engagement. These efforts can be expanded throughout Monterey County, and nationally, specifically in regions with high rates of gang activity.
East West was previewed on October 10, 2014 at the National Steinbeck Center as part of a fundraising gala and premiered on October 24 & 25 in Salinas and Marina with extremely positive feedback from audiences, community leaders, and gang prevention advocates. East West is ready for touring nationally and can be tailored to fit almost any venue. For more information or to book a date, call 831-384-1050 or email email@example.com to discuss options.
Join SpectorDance in an effort to bring awareness to the problem of gang violence and searching for positive solutions by supporting this project. Contact Fran Spector Atkins at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information about East West, or click the “DONATE” button at the top of the web page to make a contribution.
EAST WEST MAJOR DONORS
Echenique Foundation, S.T.A.R Foundation, James Irvine Foundation, National Endowment for the Arts, California Arts Council, Monterey County Weekly Fund, Community Foundation for Monterey County, Monterey Peninsula Foundation, Harden Foundation, Nancy Buck Ransom Foundation, Tanimura Family Foundation, Arts Council for Monterey County, Puffin Foundation, Jim & Karen Fanoe, Margaret Duflock, Robert & Peggy McKercher, Judy Williamson, Kevin & Mary Murphy (Fidelity Charitable Gift Fund), Christiane and Bruno Boesch, Nick & Catherine Fanoe, Ron Chen & Diana Huang, & many other businesses and individuals.
SpectorDance | www.spectordance.org | (831) 384-1050 | 3343 Paul Davis Drive Marina, CA 93933 | email@example.com