March 28, 2023
“Generation Z Project”

MINNEAPOLIS (Feb. 12, 2017) — Featuring more than 60 talented youth on stage, Asian Media Access and LVY Foundation successfully presented the Generation Z Project show at the Northrop Auditorium of the University of Minnesota on Feb. 11. With young stars such as Avery81st, Momoh Shiro, and DJ Mickey Breeze, the show successfully demonstrated the power of the talented youths.

This stunning event featured more than 60 artists under 30 years old, as it presented different manifestations of the Hip Hop culture: rap music (oral), DJing (aural), break dance (physical) and graffiti art (visual), and street fashion, to showcase the Next Big Thing in MN.  It opened up with the Patrick Henry High School’s Step Dance Team, the Generation Z Project” show was full of non-stop fun and surprising talents one after another.

LVY Foundation’s Youth Que and Asian Media Access’ Youth Nooshilon Vang took the Center Stage as MCs, they threaded this variety show seamlessly together, and introduced the young but talented DJ Mickey Breeze to show off his skills which can’t be measured by his age.  Taking the stage next was a series of hip hop dances presented by Zephonix  – “The Classroom,” “Girl Crush,” and “Pokemon,” and JW Dance 24/7 presented “I Am Better – Missy Elliott,” along with the artistic director Jacob Waldo’s solo – “Joker.”

“The Factory BMX Stunt Riders” amazed the audience with their jaw-dropping action stunts, followed by a series of singing performances, delivered powerfully by Young Singers – Yeng, Karah and Nancy.  The Show Headliners – Avery81st & The Loud Joints and Momoh Shiro, were two amazing young rappers who came from the streets, but built their names on the hip-hop scene!  Avery81st & The Loud Joints also opened shows for the hip-hop legend Big Daddy Kane, Sounds of blackness, Mac Irv, DLo.   

Momoh Shiro has an even more surprising twist for the audience. With a personal testimony on stage, on how he connected with the HOMI Group, and in little over 3 months, he had participated at virtual reality conferences and traveled all around the country to perform. He has gone from Momoh Cobain the thug street rapper to Momoh Shiro, a symbol to kids that you can get off the streets by building relationships with the right mentors. 

The Climax came with a breath-taking performance by the NRG group. Their 8 members –  Traejon Hodges, Nehmiah Lucas, Jeremey Paulson, Brandon Goodwin, Tin Tran, Darren Isaacson, Tymonte Brown and Brandon Tyrique, took turns to showcase their diverse locking and popping skills, truly taking the B-Boy to the next level.

The Finale was intentionally designed as a Prom Fashion Show with young designers and Patrick Henry High Schoolers as the models to bring a different meaning beyond fashion, but taking fashion as an empowerment tool to support young women with different figures, can all be proud of who they are, and all are beautiful in their own ways.  Lastly, but not least, a moving speech from the representative of the young artists – Jacob Waldo to close the show:

My name is Jacob Waldo, owner of JWDance247 and the choreographer of the background dancers you saw tonight.   I chose the song  “I’m Better” by the beautiful Missy Elliott for my performance because it says that she’s better for many reasons and she is.  I wanted that dance to be sexy and show confidence and pride in being a woman in today’s world.

I also wanted to give the message that there is more to be proud of today.  Not only this dance, but the whole show is to show the world that our young people are better than those who try to beat us, abuse us, lie to us, better than those who are hateful, racist, bigoted, sexist, and closed minded people; better than those who are ignorant and arrogant.   We are better because we are proud to be who we are; black, Chinese, Japanese, Hmong, Korean, Native American, gay, lesbian, white, female, etc..  It doesn’t matter, because we are human.  We are survivors.  We are fighters!   We are better than those who bring hate into our lives and the lives of our children.  It is up to us to be better and make the change for our future.  And Today’s Show, Generation Z Project is a great start.

Can’t beat this perfect ending.  Many audience has shared their comments; one was “We were blown away, congratulations!”   “amazing, very expressive”  “life is about growth!” “beauty in diversity!” “everyone is unique!” “the talent from the youth!”

For more information about the show, please contact Asian Media Access at 612-376-7715, or email [email protected]

Incorporated in August 1992, Asian Media Access, Inc. (AMA) is a comprehensive, multimedia based, community advocacy agency.  AMA is dedicated to using multimedia arts and technology as tools for social betterment.  AMA recognizes that multimedia and technology are essential for advocacy, communication and education, in order to mobilize communities, and young people; to engage in understanding and communicating of Pan Asian issues; and to arrive at a participatory decision making process for a safe, supportive environment for all.

As multimedia is defined by the Oxford Dictionary – “using more than one medium of expression or communication including film, dance, video, audio, design, drama, acrobatics, and stage effects”.   By effectively utilizing these different tools, AMA creates as well as presents programs that educate and enrich the communities.  We believe the multimedia arts and information technology empower all of us with critical thinking and promote good citizenship—especially important as we prepare young people to be tomorrow’s leaders.  Our thought-provoking multimedia education, productions, exhibitions, stage performances, resourceful educational products and youth programs encourage deep reflection, challenge previous assumptions, provide solace, and allow participants to develop their own way of connection in timeless works of creation, communication and community building.

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