Art and culture are creative tools to educate organize and mobilize a movement. The criminal justice system has hit pandemic proportions and our level of engagement as a community is vital to bring solution and alternatives to this crisis. Bryonn Bain’s Lyrics From Lockdown is an exemplary offering of the engagement of arts in activism and a vision of an equitable and transformative world.
About Lyrics from Lockdown
This unbelievably true story begins when Brooklyn’s own hip hop theater innovator and spoken word champion, Bryonn Bain (60 Minutes, The Village Voice, BET’s My Two Cents), is wrongly imprisoned in NYC jails — while studying law at Harvard. Weaving together the voices of over 40 characters into a one-man tour de force, Lyrics From Lockdown, executive produced by Gina and Harry Belafonte, is receiving extraordinary reviews around the world. A groundbreaking multimedia production, this critically acclaimed show uses a live band and video DJ, fusing hip hop, theater, spoken word poetry, rhythm and blues, calypso and classical music, to tell a provocative story exposing racial profiling and wrongful incarceration in a nation imprisoning more people than any other in the world.
“Shortly after producing the film ‘Beat Street,’ in the years that followed, I grew frustrated with Hip Hop. I was disillusioned by how many artists have turned their backs on social responsibility. The world needs to see how Bryonn Bain’s Lyrics from Lockdown carries the tradition of joining art and activism as an instrument for justice – at a time when the prison system has our communities in crisis.”
“Every moment on stage was filled with a thing of beauty.”
-Anna Deavere Smith
Department of Performance Studies, NYU Tisch School of the Arts
Author of “Twilight,” Drama Desk winner and MacArthur “Genius” Fellow