Teens in Ontario Youth Detention Facility Release Songs Through School

Project Voices Young People's Ideas Through Music

TORONTO, May 27 /CNW/ - Teen participants of The Rebirth Project, an arts mentorship program, release two songs ("This is Who We Are" and "Close To The Edge") exploring their stories leading up to and during their incarceration. Students collaborated with mentor musician Rochester, producer Agile (Nas, Jully Black and Kardinal Offishall) and recording engineer Pro Logic to write, produce and record. The two resulting songs will be serviced through On Blast Digital today to DJ's across Canada.

Download the songs here: media.whatsthe411.ca

The Rebirth Project is a collaboration between youth arts organization The 411 Initiative For Change and Brookside Secondary School, a high school within a youth detention facility in Cobourg, Ontario. The project was funded by the Ontario Arts Council and was formatted as a record label simulation. It ran over 10 weeks during the winter of 2010 as a complement to the school's music program.

"Rebirth provides marginalized young people in conflict with the law a space for their voices to be heard in the mainstream," comments lead mentor Rochester. "Participation in the project helped to improve the self esteem, communication and interpersonal skills of the students involved."

Rebirth placed music industry professionals in a classroom with five select students to explore all aspects of the music industry including song writing, production, graphic design, distribution, recording, photography, marketing and more. Additional guest mentors included: musician Motion, graphic designer Bryan Brock, journalist Hannah Sung, Photographer Che Kothari, and business mentor Jay Devonish. Students also undertook a photo shoot, designed their own album artwork and prepared to sell their CD within their school.

When asked "How do you feel about having your art manufactured and released," participating students replied "I like that people will be hearing our music and that our ideas and creation have come to life. It's been an amazing and unforgettable experience."

Notes to Editor:

    -   This program is supported by: Ontario Arts Council, The Ontario
        Trillium Foundation, The Remix Project, E1 Entertainment and On Blast


For further information: For further information: 411 Initiative for Change: Tamara Dawit - (416) 473-3595, tamara@whatsthe411.ca; Brookside SS: Louise Nadeau - (905) 396-9773, louise_nadeau@kprdsb.ca

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