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PRESS RELEASE / ANNOUNCEMENTS Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Youth-Run Nonprofit Holds Groundbreaking Breakdance Workshop

National youth-run nonprofit Everybody Dance Now! busts a move with “Breakdance Project Santa Barbara,” a free hip-hop and breakdance workshop open to all Santa Barbara community members.


WHAT- Breakdance Project is a free dance workshop created by local teens in an effort to use dance as a platform for social change. During the workshop 200+ community members will come together to learn, watch, and teach breakdance and hip-hop. Our program is inspired by Breakdance Project Uganda, a nonprofit that has used to dance to promote unity and community engagement in Kampala, Uganda. There will be performances by local breakdancers and workshops on tutting, b-boying, waving, and more! No dance experience is necessary. The workshop is open to all members of the Santa Barbara community. A ceremony will be held at the start of the event in memory of former City Council Member and dedicated EDN! supporter Babatunde Folayemi.

WHEN- June 9, 2012. 2:00 pm - 5:00 pm

WHERE- Peabody Elementary School

3018 Calle Noguera, Santa Barbara CA

-MORE INFO ABOUT EVERYBODY DANCE NOW!-

Everybody Dance Now! is a youth run nonprofit that provides free dance programs to youth who would otherwise lack access to such opportunities. The organization mobilizes qualified dance instructors to teach at locations such as Title 1 schools, low-income housing complexes, homeless shelters, and after school programs.

EDN! was established in Santa Barbara in 2005 by 14-year old Jackie Rotman. The program is currently run by a group of local teens from Santa Barbara High School, Dos Pueblos High School, and Laguna Blanca School.

Since EDN!’s foundation in 2005, the organization has served over 2,000 young people and has expanded to eleven cities across the nation. EDN!’s mission is to positively transform the lives of youth through dance, leadership, and community involvement.

-HISTORY OF BREAKDANCE PROJECT-

EDN! Founder Jackie Rotman spent the summer of 2010 in East Africa. While she was there, Jackie discovered a program called Breakdance Project Uganda (BPU) which shares the same fundamental vision as EDN! but seeks to achieve it through a different model.

Like EDN!, BPU uses dance for positive social change and aims to demonstrate how dance can be a powerful universal force for enriching people’s lives and transforming communities. But BPU differs from EDN! in that it brings hundreds of students together at one location at one time. Emphasizing that “everyone is a teacher, everyone is a student,” BPU draws on the various elements of breakdance culture to enrich young people’s lives.

The EDN! team partnered with Breakdance Project Uganda in January 2011 to establish a similar program in Santa Barbara. Breakdance Project Santa Barbara (BPSB) provides a place where people of all ages can learn, teach, and watch dance. The program works to combat issues such as youth violence, drug use, and obesity by providing a positive alternative through dance. Breakdance Project Santa Barbara is rooted in the power of music, movement, and mentorship.

On January 16th, 2011, EDN! held its first Breakdance Project. Over 200 participants came to the workshop, which was held at Harding Elementary School. Before the opening ceremony even began, young dancers moved to the beat of the music and the cheers of a gathering crowd. Grant House, Santa Barbara Mayor Pro Tem, cut the ribbon and Assemblyman Das Williams came to show his support. Babatunde Folayemi, former Santa Barbara City councilman gave the keynote address saying, “This is what we work for. This is the future.”

Last January, BPSB was held on the west side of town. Our second BPSB in December of last year, Everybody Dance Now! held the workshop on the east side of town to further their message of unification between the west and east sides of town. It was as successful as the first and brought a new group of people together, like the first.

Using dance as a platform for social change, Breakdance Project Santa Barbara is an effort to expand Everybody Dance Now!’s model not only to provide to more youth, but also to provide to an entire collective—a message that resonates with our partners in East Africa. Breakdance Project Santa Barbara is unique in that it is providing to the local Santa Barbara community in a way that no other foundation is. BPSB is engaging not only young people, but the program is captivating the attention of an entire community.

-MORE INFO ABOUT THE EVENT-

-The EDN! Leadership Team will hold a ceremony at the start of this event in memory of international activist and dedicated EDN! supporter Babatunde Folayemi who was the keynote speaker at our first Breakdance Project in 2011.

-The first 50 people to arrive will get a free Breakdance Project t-shirt.

-Pizza and water will be for sale.

-Community service hours are available for students who are interested in helping with the event. For more information about this opportunity contact Jess Davis: jess@everybodydancenow.org.

-Participation in the breakdance tutorials is optional. Attendees are also welcome to come to enjoy the performances.

-Transportation may be available if you contact us by May 20. For information contact Jess Davis: jess@everybodydancenow.org.

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