On Thursday, April 18, from 7-9pm, “I Am” Series founder Yuko Kudo, in collaboration with NYU SPS CALA, will host special performances from featured local artists around the theme of “Crime and Punishment.” Performers will include individuals who have been incarcerated or directly impacted by incarceration; some who work in or with prisons or re-entry programs; and others whose art is inspired by these frontline warriors. Guests will include members of the team that collaborated on The Work, a documentary that follows level-four convicts at Folsom Prison over a four-day group therapy retreat. Learn more about the evening’s guest performers in the bios below.
Yuko Kudo, is founder and creator of the “I Am” Series which aims “to heal and connect with art and heart” through performing arts events and workshop/conversation series for mission-driven creatives. A member of SAG-AFTRA and EMC, Yuko has performed at The Kennedy Center and NYU Skirball, has appeared in various film and theater productions, and has had her photographs appear in Forbes Magazine.
Angel Castillo – poet, writer, and author of This Is For You — develops pieces of writing that speak to her and others about homophobia, police brutality, absent parents, alcoholism, love, and other modern day issues, through the power of vulnerability, acceptance, possibility, trust, and God.
Sammi Price is a Slam Poet and Actress, specializing in projects geared towards advancing the fight for equal human rights and liberal political activism. Sammi also works as a producer/script supervisor in film. Follow Sammi @sammi__price on instagram for more poetry, acting, and film updates.
Pastor Isaac Scott is both artist and activist. As the founder and lead-artist for The Confined Arts at the Center for Justice at Columbia University, he spearheads the promotion of justice reform through the transformative power of the arts. Pastor Scott’s passion for equal human rights runs deep, and comes as a result of being directly affected by the criminal justice system and its disenfranchising nature. Since returning to society in 2013, Pastor Scott has combined fine art and graphic design to change the existing negative narratives of people in prison and of those formerly incarcerated.
Ibrahim Asad Siddiq (aka P.O.E.T) is not your average spoken word artist, more so an activist and philosopher rooted in poetry. P.O.E.T is an acronym for Putting Out Eternal Thoughts. In addition to performing, he is the artistic director of a grassroots arts program known as The FREE ART Project, through which he facilitates workshops and hosts open mics and showcases throughout NYC and Westchester County. He conducts workshops for incarcerated youth, working with various ATI (Alternative to Incarceration) programs in the Bronx and Westchester. His overall goal is to create a community hub designed to cultivate creative expression and to develop the minds of future leaders, artists, inventors, entrepreneurs and innovators.
Surrenity is an artistpreneur, performer and writer devoted to sparking mindfulness through performing arts in collaboration with societies most common and uncommon influencers at random, rehabilitative and renowned places around the globe. Find Surrenity with Stevie Wonder, Esperanza Spalding, Coldplay, Ariana Grande, Sam Smith and other notable influencers on The Voice, The Grammys, Saturday Night Live, your favorite national morning and late TV shows, in schools, prisons and marginalized communities.