Leroi Jones Young Spirit House Movers + Players

(Thirteen.org) Described by Inside Bedford-Stuyvesant producer Charles Hobson as one of the program’s “most-requested pieces”, this video features the Leroi Jones Young Spirit House Movers and Players delivering a jaw-droppingly powerful spoken-word performance.

These kids, from Bed-Stuy and Brownsville, deliver a powerful protest about race relations in America. The performance is a microcosm of the world they’re living in….

The young players embody the activist spirit of their driving force, poet and Black Arts Movement originator LeRoi Jones (Amiri Baraka). Using synched movements and poetry, the kids address various issues from inequality to the lack of a well-rounded black history curriculum in the schools. One girl states affectingly: “We are taught to hate ourselves…America, why did you bring us here?” But the underlying message from Jones through these kids is the importance of pride and self-empowerment. As one of the children says near the end: “Today is ours/Let’s take it.” (source)