The original goal of Hoop Suite, an organization created by Anna Myers, was to unite communities in neighborhoods that were terrorized by violence and crime. Anna Myers, a talented and experienced dancer, came to NuVu to work with us to create a compilation of dancing, singing, and spoken word that would deliver a message we as students wanted to get across.
After brainstorming with Anna and a few of her associates, we decided as a group that the message we wanted to get across to an audience was the lack of recognition of young people in a society today. We as teenagers feel that we have important and valuable ideas to share. Often, we feel that our voices aren’t heard or ignored because of our “childish ways.”
Instead of simply conveying our thoughts through speech, we decided that it would be more effective if our message was shown through an interactive performance. Within two weeks of working with Anna and her team, our studio put together a performance that was both visually pleasing, and engaging.
After performing at two schools, we really felt that our message had been successfully portrayed. The audiences we performed for were interested and impacted in significant ways. We as a group were proud of how we had come out of our comfort zones and achieved our goal.
I am finding me
Searching out the pieces inside of me
They say to do what I love
But when I give my heart it’s not enough
Here I am tied between
What I want and what they think I need
I am here just look at me
Don't Judge Me Chorus:
Stop judging you don’t know me
Not budgin you can’t change me
I’ll be....Imma be who I am. Imma be who I am
Stop judging you don’t know me
I’m on my own time
You’ll see...Imma be who I am. Imma be who I am. x2
Prayer Remix Lyrics:
Give me a chance and I will try
To do what’s right in my own life
Don’t lose faith I’ll do the best I can I promise you
Give me a chance and I will try
to do what’s right in my own eyes
I am ready to pay my dues
Hoop Suite is a variety show comprised of modern dance, rap, spoken word poetry, and music. The project explores the difficulties that teenagers and young people face through these various art forms. Sometimes youth are not really heard. The studio members’ goal was to get themselves heard. Jess, Noel, and Emily were in the music group during the Hoop Suite studio. The music followed a similar theme of being listened to without judgment and freedom of choice. The main coach of the music group was Johnny. They began by spending time warming up their voices and practicing harmonies together. The rap group figured out the background music they wanted to use and the music crew wrote first the melody and then the lyrics of a catchy hook. They also wrote a melody and lyrics to a more haunting and sad tune about finding yourself in the confusion of teenagerdom. In addition, they changed the words to and sang a new version of Kid Cudi’s song “The Prayer.” Which Emily and Ben accompanied on the ukulele. The final combined product was performed at the Boston Collegiate Charter School in Dorcester, and at Beaver Country Day School in Chestnut Hill. Emily, Noel, and Jess learned a lot about making music together and the passion for music that is inside all of them.
Today was my first day this week. I had been out sick Monday and Tuesday. At the very beginning the music group worked on our intro song and adding a violin part to it, this part I liked. The last hour before lunch, we ran through the entire show or at least the first section in the morning. We put together all four components: poetry, dance, singing and rap. This gave everyone a chance to clean weak areas up. It also gave everyone practice and experience in case something goes wrong. We all learned that we needed to continue to do what we were doing even if we messed up; we had to pretend like it was real show. Right before we went off to lunch the music group worked on harmonizing the hook to “Don’t Judge Me.” After lunch we all came together and worked on the 2nd half of the show. This part was harder for me because I had missed the last two days but I will hopefully catch on quickly. Another challenge was the whispering and the side conversation but only sometimes did I think the group got out of control, majority of the time we were focused and productive but still got yelled at.
Today was not as productive as it could have been. We spent half the morning talking about choices and goals. It was nice, but I personally didn’t find it extremely useful, as we had a lot of other things to be doing today. I felt like we didn’t have enough time in our small groups, but more than enough in the big group. We only had about an hour with our small group in the morning between sharing choices and show and tell. After lunch we worked on blocking the piece and the intro and putting together our “Don’t Judge Me” piece. It took a long time because we were having trouble focusing and it was kind of hard to hear people. There were also a lot of ideas floating around. Again, I don’t think we got as much done as we could have. All in all, not a terrible day as we did get some stuff done… but not as good as it could have been. I wish we had more time to work with the musicians on the intro song with harmonies and things, as well as working with the entire rap group to figure out when the hooks come in.
Today we worked solely on our intro. Noel, Jess, and I are creating a song/ part of a song to sing at the beginning of the piece. We began by brainstorming. We had a lot of ideas that were very all over the place. It was difficult to narrow down the ideas into more singable and writeable topics. Anthony gave us a background track to work with. That really helped us with the tune. Once we had the sad piano music, we began a free write. In the free write, we ended up coming up with similar themes. We used a few lines from each of our work, tweaked, to create lyrics and a melody. It became, I think, very beautiful in a sad kind of way. We recorded the audio of our song piece so that we would not forget it. After lunch we got together as a full group and worked on the intro. Everyone showed their pieces. Dance had improved tenfold. Rap and Poetry’s introductions were awesome. I hope everyone liked our song. After this sharing of work we began blocking some stuff. It was a bit frustrating because no one was very focused and it was very loud, and a lot of ideas were floating around. Since all the intro stuff is unfinished at this point, it was hard to block these ideas that haven’t been fully decided.