Based on the poem by Amaya Jenkins, Slaying Our Inner Demons is an experimental visual essay about a generation of young people of color dissatisfied with the current geopolitical climate and alienated by colonial politics, and their need to transform themselves to bring change in this world.
Jenkins was a stand-out participant in Rysing Womyn, a 2015-2016 Cal Shakes Artist-Investigator project led by Cat Brooks and Anna Maria Luera. Rysing Womyn supported young women of color to find their voice, unearth their stories, and tell them in their own words and on their own terms. Jenkins performed “Slaying Our Inner Demons” at Cal Shakes’ Civic Dialogue The Construction of Gender: Actualizing Women’s Empowerment, and we are proud to have partnered with United Roots to help spread her message as a counterpoint to a political climate of alt-facts, open bigotry, and fear.
Amaya Jenkins (poet, performer) was born in a small town in Mississippi and moved to California at the tender age of six. About “Slaying Our Inner Demons,” she says, “I have endured so many prejudiced and racial encounters over the course of my life in both states. I want my poem to resonate the struggles of myself and my ancestors as well as give a prominent hope for the future.”
Venus Morris (video editor) was born and raised in Oakland for a majority of her life. Growing up she always had a passion for cultural arts. She started performing early on and and knew that her light would shine the most on stage. Ever since the moment she had that revelation she made a vow to be the voice of the many voiceless people through her bright spirit and gifted presence.
UR Media is a production company of United Roots, training young people of color to be the next generation of socially conscious media makers and providing youth-led media and tech services to the community. In partnership with local media companies, like Green Eyed Media and The Hidden GEM Arts Incubator, UR Media industry professionals supervise and manage media production with young adult media makers & tech innovators for our projects and contracts.
United Roots was born from the convergence of several East Bay organizations that collectively envisioned a youth-led movement to harness arts and media to promote unity and peace in neighborhoods struggling with violence. United Roots houses many programs and community projects, and these programs create an ecosystem of opportunities for our young people.
Cal Shakes’ Artist-Investigator program explores how the tools of theater artists can be applied outside the rehearsal room and is made possible by the James Irvine Foundation. The Rysing Womyn project also received generous support from the California Arts Council.