Great Leap, Inc.

Great Leap, Inc.

Nonprofit

2013 is the 35th anniversary of Great Leap. We have consistently created productions, workshops and art programs that have grown from our engagement with diverse communities. Our longevity reflects our ability to change, innovate and respond to the needs of the times. In 1978, Founder/Artistic Director, Nobuko Miyamoto established Great Leap as a non-profit arts organization creating concerts and musica … Read More 2013 is the 35th anniversary of Great Leap. We have consistently created productions, workshops and art programs that have grown from our engagement with diverse communities. Our longevity reflects our ability to change, innovate and respond to the needs of the times. In 1978, Founder/Artistic Director, Nobuko Miyamoto established Great Leap as a non-profit arts organization creating concerts and musical theater works reflecting the Asian American experience, successfully mounting and touring musicals “Chop Suey” and “Talk Story” on the West Coast and Hawaii. In response to the racial conflicts of Los Angeles Uprising in 1992, Great Leap became a multicultural arts organization, presenting the first-voice stories of Asian, Latino and African American artists in “A Slice of Rice, Frijoles and Greens.” To this day the performance tours colleges including a yearly show at UCLA’s Medical School as cultural awareness training for new interns. Our youth version toured schools for 10 years, reaching 50,000 youth yearly with the Music Center on Tour program. In 2001, the events of 9/11 pushed us to create workshops and that brought together people from the Muslim, Buddhist, Christian and Jewish communities. We created a sacred space where people could share their stories and traditions, and experienced the power of the bonding that resulted. From this we developed the theater piece “Leaps of Faith,” performed at the 2009 World Parliament of Religions in Australia. Great Leap has also designed Arts and Yoga for Youth, a program for USC’s Upward Bound program, training and creating performances with young people. In 2005 we created our artist mentorship program, Collaboratory to pass on our creative practices to the next generation. We are now doing the tenth cycle of Collaboratory in Long Beach, with Cambodian, Samoan and Tongan artists and community members who will learn Great Leap’s creative and collaborative methodology in theater making and community building. Now we are using our environmental music video series, “Eco-Vids” as an innovative way to engage communities of color with the critical issue of Climate Change and highlight the sustainable practices passed down the generations. The first, “B.Y.O. Chopstix,” promotes conservation by using disposable chopsticks; “Mottainai” tells the story of the Japanese tradition of “No Waste,” and “Cycles of Change,” a collaboration between Quetzal and Nobuko, encourages urban families to bicycle for their health and the environment. Since 2010 the Ecovids have received over 45,000 views on YouTube.

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