New Yorkers know the ins and out of the subway. It’s part of growing up, it’s a part of our rights of passage. In case you did not know, next summer when you are in the middle of the dog days of summer take a ride on the E train because it has the very best air condition and like every subway car in the city, there is always a show.
The new multimedia, multicultural children reading series KaZoom Kids iStoryBooks, the brainchild of founder and CEO, Donna Beasley has teamed up with Harlem School of the Arts (HSA) to create a series of free readings of the books published under the new company.
KaZoom iStoryBooks was created because frankly there is a great need. “There is a real shortage of multicultural children's books for Black and Latino families,” says creator and CEO Donna Beasley, who discovered that only 5% of children’s books published feature children of color. Her way of solving the problem was to create greater diversity in children’s literature. “At KaZoom iStoryBooks we are changing things, but we can't do it alone.” This is why partnerships like the one with HSA are extremely important in helping to connect with audiences that will appreciate finding relatable stories, featuring characters that look like them, reflect their communities and experiences, and serve to strengthen their children’s imaginations and sense of self. Author Lapacazo Sandoval who wrote Taking the E Train and Everybody Loves Cake, one of the three books featured in this storytelling event, was first to respond when the call went out to the community of writers attached to KaZoom Publishing, to participate in the series."
The series came to life because of HSA's commitment to connecting with the community and other creatives of color. It was Yvonne Garcia, Vice President of Development & External Affairs who warmed to the idea of the new children publishing company and connected with CEO, Donna Beasley.
The creative idea grew again because of the life force that embodies the Artistic Director & Director of Theatre, Alfred Preisser -- a man of great vision. He placed the reading of Taking The E Train performance in the capable hands of Amanda McDowall, one of the most respected musical theater teachers at HSA.
The theatrical reading of Taking The E-Train is about an adventurous Abuela who takes her three grandchildren on an adventure on NYC’s E train on one of the hottest days of summer! Directed by McDowall, the reading will include live music, song, African drumming, and a choreographed hip-hop dance number. All performed by the students of HSA.
The KaZoom Kids Storytelling series is tailored to kids ages 3-8 (Saturday, November 4 at 10:00 am). HSA is located at 645 Saint Nicholas Avenue, NYC. It is FREE for all children and their parents.
HSA present Storytelling with KaZoom iStorybooks :