Rhode Island
Profile Type: Artist
Christopher E. Johnson

Christopher Johnson is the recipient of the 2018 Rhode Island State Council of the Arts Fellowship for Playwriting. He is also a finalist for the 2018 for the McColl Johnson Fellowship and an award-winning Slam Poet.

Timely, relevant, honest, unapologetic, personal, and political, Christopher Johnson’s spoken word commands in a way that is uncomfortable and arresting. Educated in performance art through experience and mentorship, it has been said that his pieces touch the heart with feathers and barbed wire alike, speaking uncomfortable truths, invoking the best and worst of human emotions. Christopher’s presence demands attention in a way that leaves people captivated and eager to hear more. Using words like a dancer uses movement or a painter uses color, his delivery is nuance. There is expressive intention in every gesture without it appearing choreographed. Able to evoke deep seated dormant emotions through writings and performance, Johnson's emotional expression through his art transcends race, gender, and other divisions. His impassioned words reach into the collective soul of all us, touching and expressing our own pain, fear, and love, as well as his own. When Christopher is on stage you can rest knowing you are safe in his capable hands treating strangers like family guaranteeing both the content and delivery will remain a part of you forever. 

Christopher's published writing includes:

  • "When Home is Not an Option; Signifyin Harlem," 2002
  • "Big Bang Praise Song; Elephant Journal," 2014.
  • "Broken Mends, Forgiveness, Untitled "I am Broken Water", 2014
  • "Monster; Not Dead Yet," 2014
  • "What if Jesus;" Providence Journal, 2017
  • "A sandwich is not a gun; This is Not a Gun," 2020
  • Guest editor, Motif Magazine, February 2020

Major works created and performed include:

  • "Invoice for Emotional Labor"- A solo performance workshop designed to educate audiences on the new lexicon of race and racism as defined and informed by such works as "The New Jim Crow" (Michelle Alexander), "Between the World and Me" (Ta-Nehisi Coates), and workshops given by "The Peoples Institute for Survival and Beyond." This mutli-discipline performance utilizes autobiographical stories with projections of social media occurrences and definitions of such terms as micro aggression, anti-Blackness, and institutional racism to audiences who may are may not be away of why the dictionary definition of racism is inadequate to describe the experience of the authors life as a black man in America. 2020
  • "New and Dangerous Ideas" -  Inspired by Roger Williams, Bill T. Jones and Everett Dance, Stage and School. A multi media experience, "New and Dangerous Ideas" challenges ideas of criminalizing race and expatriating police while humanizing statistics by using personal stories of several members of different communities intersected with spoken word poetry, framed in music, dance and video. 2017

Tedx Providence, 2017, Christopher was invited to perform and speak about mindfulness.

Christopher is a highly sought-out speaker and performer who has collaborated with dozens of inviduals and organizations, including:

  • Atlantis Charter School
  • Newport Art House
  • City of Providence
  • Beliamo Dance Collective
  • Everett Company Stage and School
  • Wilbury Theatre Group
  • Festival Internacional Zonas Poeticas in Havana, Cuba
  • Brown Universaity
  • University of Rhode Isalnd
  • Tomaquag Museum
  • Providence College
  • FirstWorks
  • Fort Forclosure
  • Gamm Thaeatre
  • AS220
  • PVD Fringe Festival
  • Arts Alliance of Communities
  • Trinity Repertory Company
  • School One





I Have Worked With

  • February 2017

    I have actually partnered with Firstworks on a number of different projects dating back to around 2002. The last partnership was with Bandaloop for PVDFest 2017. I walked down a 12 story building performing a poem I wrote 4 times, the largest crowd numbering around 5,000 people. 

  • May 2016

    Performa as a cast member of Everett Dance School and Stage's "Freedom Project"

    Work with Trinity Rep's summer youth program 

  • August 2014

    Co-Creator/Actor in "Freedom Project."  Writer/actor/dancer in a comprehensive production focused on raising questions around mass incarceration. 

  • Artist

Contact Information

First Name: 
Job Title/Position: 
Mailing Address: 
18 Ruggles Street
Providence, RI 02908
Physical Address: 
18 Ruggles Street
Providence, RI 02908
Last Name: 


Profile Type: 
Primary Discipline: 
Additional Disciplines: 
Humanities - General
Humanities - Cultural Heritage
Humanities - History
Humanities - Literature
Humanities - Philosophy
Literary Arts - General
Literary Arts- Fiction
Literary Arts - Non-Fiction
Literary Arts - Poetry
Literary Arts - Spoken Word
Theater - General
Theater - Playwriting
Theater - Solo / One-Person Show
Theater - Storytelling
Year Founded: 
Populations Served: 
General Public
Incarcerated (or Formerly Incarcerated) Individuals
LGBTQ Populations
People with Disabilities
School Groups
Veteran/Active Duty Military Personnel
Institution/Business Type: 
Artist (Individual)
Activities and Services: 
Art Sales
Artist Representation / Artist Management
Arts Criticism / Journalism
Arts for Social Change / Creative Activism
Arts Instruction / Lessons
Community Arts
Consulting - Curatorial Services
Creation of a Work of Art (Including Commissions)
Curriculum Development
Design Services
Performance / Concert / Reading
Public Art Projects (In Free, Public Spaces)
Residency - Community
Residency - In School
Residency - Production / Development
Residency - Other
Social Media Services
Writing Services
Workshops / Demonstrations / Master Class
Events Per Year: 
Seasons Active: 
Geographic Reach: 
Multi-County Region
Multi-State Region

Affiliations and Accomplishments

I am on the following State Arts Agency Roster(s): 
Rhode Island Education Roster

I am a Touring Artist

Technical Requirements: 
Fee Range Minimum: 
Fee Range Maximum: 
State of Residence: 
Rhode Island
Minimum Number of Performers: 
Maximum Number of Performers: 

I am a Teaching Artist

Teaching Settings: 
Afterschool Program
Arts and Cultural Center / Venue
Community Site / Center
Corporate Business
Private Studio
School / University
Subject Areas: 
Arts Integration - Communications
Arts Integration - English Language / Literacy
Arts Integration - History and Social Science
Ages Served: 
Elementary School-age
Middle School-age
High School-age
Fee Range Minimum: 
Fee Range Maximum: