First Person Art Highlights


We Breathe, We Live: Brotherly Love Protest Stories takes us back to the Summer of 2020 in Philadelphia as protests erupted across the and it helps carve a path towards hope and healing.

For 20 years, First Person Arts has brought you true personal narratives from the page, the stage, on-air and online. This year, in collaboration with the Department of Behavioral Health and Intellectual disAbility Services, Engaging Males of Color initative, we bring true personal narratives to you on film. This film will air on WHYY TV one year after the horrific deaths of George Floyd and Walter Wallace, Jr.


This documentary film uses the power of storytelling to present the first-person experiences of men who participated in the George Floyd and Walter Wallace, Jr. protests in Philadelphia during the summer of 2020.

For Father's Day, we celebrate the unbreakable bonds that exist with our BIPOC fathers and sons. Back by popular demand, David Acosta returns to direct BEyond Expectations: Letter to My Father, Letter to My Son - Evolutions with new stories that feature these powerful bonds.

Journalist, Bill Anderson, reflects on the recent loss of his father, radio icon, Cody Anderson, while activist and mother Kimberly Kamara shares the loss of her black son in a senseless tragedy. Eric "Shomari" Grimes, Dr. H. Bernard Hall, Rafael Collazo, and Raymond Zhang are leaders who join in to honor what is too often overlooked - the power of fathers and sons of color relationships. Musical accompaniment will be provided by Eric Wortham.

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My Body is a Monument: An Evening with Caroline Randall Williams
Ms. Randall Williams’ New York Times essay, “You Want a Confederate Monument? My Body is a Confederate Monument,” received international attention in the movement to dismantle systemic racism because it exposed both race- and gender-based violence perpetrated against Black women in the United States of America. In addition to Ms. Randall Williams, this event also features Trapeta Mayson, Philadelphia’s Poet Laureate, musical artist Ursula Rucker, Marangeli Mejia-Rabell, Co-Founder of AfroTaino.event, and the incomparable Sonia Sanchez.

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Watch Beyond Numbness and Anger

These feelings are shared by so many people today. How do you move past them? How do WE move past them? With courage, laughter, and a little help. Join us for this rare, authentic moment when four males of color: Comedians Ali Siddiq and Che Guerrero, Dr. Neil Bardhan, and activist Edwin Desamour talk about the true experiences that lead to these and other feelings. In conversation with co-hosts Dr. Jean Wright and Gabriel Bryant, we'll discuss ways to move past numbness and anger toward wellness. The event is sponsored by The City of Philadelphia Department of Behavioral Health & Intellectual disAbility Services' Engaging Males of Color (EMOC) initiative in collaboration with First Person Arts.
Engaging Males of Color (EMOC) is an initiative of the City of Philadelphia Department of Behavioral Health and Intellectual disAbility Services. EMOC creates innovative programming to give males of color and their support networks a platform to discuss current issues in their communities.

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Five People. One Moment: Love in the Heart of the City

#US: Five People. One Moment - “Love in the Heart of the City” provides a window into the hearts and minds of men of color living in several of Philadelphia’s “arterial” corridors and neighborhoods. This deep dive shows how the 1-2 punch of the pandemic and protests over police-involved homicides have impacted their emotional health and overall well-being. We invite you to join #US as we explore “Love in the Heart of the City”. Hosted by Gabe Bryant, produced by Stephanie Renée.

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