REMIX PROJECT SUPPORTS YOUNG CHICAGOANS' CREATIVE PURSUITS IN PILSEN
The Remix Project was created in order to help level the playing field for young people from disadvantaged communities trying to enter into creative industries or further their formal education. The Toronto-based school now has a new home in Chicago and will open in the fall, but right now, they have a summer pilot program.
Remix Project Chicago, located at Lacuna Artist Lofts in Pilsen, features a 5,000-square foot state of the arts space that will provide creative curriculum in three areas of study: recording arts, creative arts and business acumen.
"We are targeting the youth that get overlooked and we want to help them get to that next level," said Cory Jenkins, Remix Project.
The facility has a professional recording studio, editing suites built with doors from a meat packing company. Fire hoses are used for seating, and private work stations are meant to inspire students, like train seats used in a classroom and airplane seating in the event space. All are built with re-purposed materials.
Isabel Andrade, a photography student at the school is helping another student, recording artist Brandon Montgomery, known as Breaddoe, with his portfolio.
"It has allowed me to come in contact with so many people, who have allowed me to experience so many things," said Andrade.
Students range in age from 17 to 22 years old, and they are selected based on need, talent and motivation. The 9-month career development program is tailored to each youth's goals, such as developing a portfolio, going into business, creating a clothing line, or recording a mix tape.
"It is an opportunity to display my music for the world and do it in an environment that is healthy," said Breaddoe.
The Remix Project is at the Lacuna Artist Lofts thanks to the generosity of the Joseph Cacciatore family, Dave Bolland, and the Issa Foundation, but they still need your support.
"To have an alternative arts school move into the building is a dream come true, for the neighborhood and the city it is awesome," said Joey Cacciatore, Lacuna Artists' Lofts and Remix board member.
The students will be mentored by industry professionals.
"Teachers that will help them learn how to brand and market themselves, teach them the skills that they do not know outside of their artistry," said Jenkins.
Cacciatore spoke about how important this school is for his family.
"Well, for many reasons, but none more so than to do something for the community which we live in and where we call home," said Cacciatore.