Aaron Jafferis is a hip-hop poet and playwright whose awards include a Creative Capital Award, Richard Rodgers Award, Sundance Institute / Time Warner Fellowship, NEA Art Works Grant, NEFA National Theatre Project Grant and multiple MacDowell Fellowships. Aaron is the founding artistic director of The Word youth poetry program in New Haven (modeled after his mentor June Jordan’s Poetry for the People program), which supports young people using hip-hop and spoken word as engines for justice and liberation. Aaron has performed his hip hop poetry at Madison Square Garden, the Kennedy Center, and the National Poetry Slam Championships, where he is a former Open Rap Slam champion. He creates dynamic theatre, poetry and slam performances and workshops for schools and theatres.
Workshops can be booked independently or in conjunction with a performance or excerpt of one of his hip-hop plays and musicals: What Is Race & How Did I Catch It, Activist Songbook, The Ones, Smooth Criminal, How to Break, Kingdom, Stuck Elevator, Shakespeare: The Remix, or No Lie. Workshops range in duration from an hour-and-a-half session to a semester-long project, and combine the study of master works with the creation of new student work. Residencies culminate in a student theatrical performance, staged reading, poetry café, slam, or chapbook publication. Workshops for youth include The Word, Hip Hop Theatre, What Is Race & How Did I Catch It, Forum Theatre, Activist Songbook, Theatre as Social Action, Playwriting Our Selves, ill verses, and Lit Remix. Teacher Trainings include Art Interrupting Injustice, (Mis)Perception at Work, Writing Race, and The Arts of Healing Myself.
Teacher fees listed range from a one-time workshop to a full week residency with multiple classes each day.