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RAW of the crowd – “tweens” flock to rap hip hop

16 June 2004

RAW of the crowd – “tweens” flock to rap hip hop project

Local “tweens” (10 to 13 year-olds) in Avondale, Mt Roskill and Onehunga are making the most of Auckland City’s “Urban Suburbia served RAW” project – a pilot series of free workshops in poetry and rap, hip hop and voice training.

Possibly the next big thing in the Aotearoa hip hop scene, groups of 10 to15 tweens get together each week to learn the latest from professional tutors.

RAW has been promoted through schools and youth groups, and encourages youth to channel their energies into creative expression.

Auckland City’s recreation and art manager, Gail Richards, says most classes have been well attended.

“It’s been a great reaction. And it’s a great opportunity for youth to get together with others in their neighbourhood and express themselves through performing arts.

“It’s giving them confidence, exposes their talents and shows them what they can achieve”, Ms Richards says.

Young people in the rap class have been working with poet and rapper Daren Kamali on poems about their communities and families. They then work with singer and voice coach Mahinarangi Tocker and choreographer Jodi Russell to create the hip hop routines.

The programme will finish next month with performances from 28 to 30 June by the participants showcasing what they have learned.

The RAW arts programme was launched in 2001. It derived its name from professional artists working with the raw talent of young people from 15 to 21 years old and environmental materials to produce temporary environmental art.

All RAW youth arts projects are run by the Auckland City Council to encourage youth arts. Visit www.aucklandcity.govt.nz/raw for more information. For more information on how to enrol in the classes, please phone Shirley Allan on 021 469 060.


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