Community Workshops



BOLDSKOOL Hip Hop Workshops

The BOLDSKOOL Hip Hop Theatre Workshops are designed to empower youth to tell their own stories in their own language. The workshops combine skills training in elements of hip hop (break-dancing, spoken word, MC’ing, beat boxing) and theatre (storytelling, movement).

BOLDSKOOL engages diverse youth in using performing arts as a tool to foster social change, and connects youth with an accessible set of artistic tools for self-expression. By offering youth a creative platform to free their original voices, we create a space for personal growth through collaborative performance, friendship and mentorship.

The program is directed by Omari Newton, an award winning professional actor, writer and poet:

“From the outset of writing Sal Capone, I wanted to create a theatrical experience that was fully immersive for our target demographic, young, passionate, audience members who have traditionally been underserved by Canadian theatre. I didn’t want to follow the standard, passive practice of showing youth a show, hopefully sparking something within them, then leaving them without any outlet for whatever creative sparks that may have been shaken. I wanted to give the kids to learn some of the skills they experienced on stage. Slam poetry, Hip Hop, freestyling etc. So, The Boldskool Hip Hop theatre workshop was born as a concept. Myself, Diane Roberts & Mia Perry then developed the workshop over the next few years into an interactive Hip Hop theatre workshop for youth.  A chance for participants to express themselves creatively, and politically.”

In the workshops youth:

  • Find and develop their creative voices
  • Discuss social issues that affect them
  • Explore the use of theatre techniques in expressing themselves
  • Build confidence and self-expression in a collaborative setting
  • Are encouraged to talk about their relationship with their families, friends and community
  • Discuss their ability to initiate and create change

Past workshops have been delivered to Surrey Arts Centre, Canadian Roots Exchange, Burnaby School District, Collingwood Neighbourhood House, Richmond Youth Media Lab, North Shore Multicultural Society,  Britannia Community Services Centre, SFU Woodwards, and various secondary schools in the Metro Vancouver region.

Latest Workshop: Two Day Workshop at the Surrey Arts Centre on February 18th & 25th (MCing, beatboxing, breakdancing, theatre)

Download the Program Guide HERE


Omari Newton - Program Director

Omari NewtonMontreal-born artist Omari Newton is an award winning professional actor, writer and poet whose work can be seen on television, film and stages internationally. Significant screen credits include the role of “Larry Summers” on Spike TV’s popular comedy Blue Mountain State, “Lucas Ingram” from Showcase/ SYFY USA network’s hit show Continuum, and the voice of “Jefferson” on Disney XD’s new cartoon series Max Steel. Newton’s stage work has earned him a number of awards and accolades including a best supporting actor nomination for his work in the Centaur Theatre’s production of Joe Penhal’s award winning “Blue/Orange (Soirée Des Masques). His original hip hop theater piece The Lamentable Tragedy of Sal Capone was produced by urban ink in 2013-2014 and premiered in Vancouver and Montreal in partnership with Black Theatre Workshop. He and Continuum castmate Luvia Peterson (Garza ) co-host a comedic monthly entertainment podcast called The Visible Minority report.

J-kay Agudo

JK47JK47 is the Director of Frontlinez International Break Squad, Co-Director of the Freestyle Rap Alliance and member of the Project Soul Show Company. She is a well respected Bgirl here in Vancouver and is internationally recognized as a driving force. A full-time instructor and performer, JK dedicates herself into pushing new levels of excellence to build communities and encourages the pursuit of purpose & passion.

Rupert Common

Rupert200Rupert is a Hip Hop artist and teacher from Vancouver, B.C. His main form of expression is writing rap – which he performs over produced beats, beat-box loops of his own creation, or with his 4-piece band. He is also deeply involved in break-dance, training and teaching on a daily basis. A more recent foray into guitar and singing has expanded his skills a vocalist and deepened his knowledge of music. He incorporates all these elements into his workshops, and teaches an all-rounded approach to hip hop culture. Aside from his own practices and performances, Rupert puts energy into hosting events and shows. Many of these shows are free, all ages, and include open mic “cyphers.” By bringing together a diverse group of people with a range of talents, Rupert hopes to strengthen Vancouver’s Hip Hop community and help grow a style and vibe unique to the city.

Ronnie Dean Harris

OstwelveRonnie aka Ostwelve is a Coast Salish Multimedia Hiphop artist from the Sto:lo Territory of British Columbia. He got his first song on the radio at 14 years old and went on to be one of youngest radio hosts in Canada, hosting the When Spirits Whisper and Halkomelem language program The Speaker radio shows on Coop Radio 102.7 CFRO at the age of 15. Since then Ronnie has worked as an actor for APTN/Showcase series Moccasin Flats and film Moccasin Flats: Redemption, lead composer for APTN children’s Cree language series Nehiyawetan: Let’s Speak Cree, content manager and award-winning podcast host for (an Indigenous music culture website based out of Vancouver), released the award-winning rap album Anti-Gravity Dinosaurs (2008), and has performed in numerous festivals and has opened for acts such as Guru, K’naan, Asbtract Rude and Snoop Dogg to name a few. In the last 10 years Ronnie has been very active in facilitating and creating workshop programs for youth empowerment in media arts and hip-hop. In January 2012, Ronnie completed the Aboriginal Leadership Certificate program at the Justice Institute of British Columbia. Check Ostwelve on Facebook.

Kia Kadiri

Kia KadiriKia has been one of Vancouver’s most respected females on the mic for almost 20 years. Her energetic performances and unique style keep her in demand as an instructor, performer, and facilitator. Kia works passionately with youth in Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside, mentoring & teaching rap. Her debut record “Feel This” received acclaim across the country for thought provoking lyrics, excellent production, and blend of genres. From hip hop to soul, jazz to drum & bass, Kia’s lighting speed raps and passionate delivery leave her in a class of her own.

David Kaye

_dsc8376-editdk1-copyDavid Kaye is an actor/producer who has been working in film and TV since the age of four. At the age of eleven, he began working as a voice actor as well in cartoons and video games. He graduated in 2011 with a BFA in Acting from UBC. David has had a hand in putting together over 50 productions including music videos, short films, web commercials, branded content, and web series’. In 2016, David joined the teaching staff at Shoreline Actors Academy where he coaches children and teens.  David is currently producing and performing in the animated Vine series, WHITE NINJA as well as Whiskaye Films’ 1st feature film, PRODIGALS, on top of writing a comedic hip hop musical for the stage.

Dave Nelson

EmotionzMC/Beatboxer extraordinaire, hailing from Vancouver, Canada, has performed over 1500 times through over 10 countries. His live set has become an energy filled journey through Hip Hop with its multiple genres of musical influence; Rapping, Beatboxing, Dancing and most of all spreading love on stage. He recently teamed up with Wandering Worx Music and released “On The Up & Up”, a collection of songs depicting his current musical direction of conscious lyrics with banging beats and fun songs. Check Emotionz on Facebook

Kim Villagante

Kim VillaganteKim Villagante (aka K!mmortal) is a multi-dimensional artist who expresses herself across many mediums. She was born in Vancouver, grew up in Surrey, and graduated in 2011 with Visual Arts and Art History from UBC. Since being forced to perform in front of her family at Filipino gatherings as a young kid, Kim has continued to express herself on stage and even love it. She strives to rep hard as a renaissance artist through visual art, singing, rapping, spoken-word, and writing. Kim is inspired by artists of colour, the history of resistance, powerful Filipinos and the smell of coffee. She will release her first album in 2014. Check K!mmortal on Facebook.

BOLDSKOOL was created by hip-hop artist, actor and playwright Omari Newton, Urban Ink’s former Artistic Director Diane Roberts and education consultant Dr. Mia Perry.

For info/bookings contact:
BOLDSKOOL on Facebook

Donate to support BOLDSKOOL HERE