The AMC2015 Opening Ceremony

We are excited to share this video recap from the AMC2015 Opening Ceremony. You can also watch the full-length version, produced by Philly CAM, here.

The opening ceremony featured a sonic performance art piece by Diné artist, Ryan Dennison, live video projection by VJ Calixta and sounds by DJ Izla. Detroit poet, mother, and activist, Tawana Petty, welcomed people to Detroit and then representatives of all 30 AMC Tracks, Practice Spaces, and Network gatherings performed a collective poem around the theme of "waging love," as a tribute to the late Detroit activist, Charity Hicks. Black Lives Matter co-founder Patrisse Cullors gave the keynote speech, which grew into an epic on-stage dance party and celebration of Black life. Brinae Ali and Destination Forever, a Flint, Michigan based dance crew, closed out the night with an electric, black-lit tap performance. This brilliant array of media, art, and technology offered a vision of the world we’re working towards, together.

Watch our highlights of the action in our AMC2015 Opening Ceremony video below. We’ve also included the full text of the Wage Love poem written by the AMC2015 coordinators.

The Wage Love Poem

by coordinators of AMC2015 tracks, practice spaces, and network gatherings

We Wage Love For…

those we love still who have left their body; spirits; charity; sheddy; victor; shelley; simba; all the folks killed by the state

for the underprivileged—for the estranged, and the unrequited

for all the femmes hurt and killed by patriarchal and state violence. for all the baby femmes who are smart, creative, and full of life

all LGBTQTS youth, especially Indigenous, Black and youth of color, who are on the front lines of resistance to the police and state violence every day

for youth who are targeted by oppression, shame, and injustice, anyone who is pushed aside, silenced, and forgotten

for those who have created the worlds for the young to destroy the vision of struggling in vain

for our folks who couldn't go to school and shouldn't have to because we share what we know

for those whose stories are being rearranged and legacies erased; for Detroit, New Orleans, Dallas, Miami, DC, Seattle and beyond

for the women and girls not welcome on hip hop stages; We wage love on Hip Hop because hate is too heavy a burden to bear

for those whose bodies are constantly at war. May we heal and ever be resilient. May we make real peace with our bodies

for all black lives across the entire globe

for all of our children. for them to know a Detroit with access to water, land, food & justice. for them to know, together, we are the greatest power

for future generations, honoring & AMPlifying the voices, histories & songs of our ancestors & those among us who are too often silenced

for ancestors buried in our genes; future generations skeptically hopeful; our neighbors who speak a different language; but whose bodies break just the same

for those that need us; for the lucid dreamers and movement weavers; for the revolutionaries past, future, and in between us

for the dreamers, thinkers, and tinkerers who understand that learning, sharing, and preserving community knowledge are radical acts

for a world in which all our stories are heard, appreciated, celebrated and combined to design the place where our communities breathe, live, and love

for a world where we share our technology with strangers

for a world where communication is a human right

for ourselves, so that we love more of who we are; for each other, to find our power, uplift our power, and share our power; for a new system of collective healing

for social justice movements that are built upon all of our complicated ass experiences

for transformation that goes beyond transaction and resource sharing that transcends fundraising: all in the name of justice, liberation and healing

for the collective liberation and growth of all communities across generations

for the soul and the spirit, for other bodies and minds we are connected to; for the Earth and the Sun, which have always loved us

for our communities survival, sustainability, and our existence in the places we call home, and for those that come before us and after us

for ever & ever

We Wage Love By...

listening deeply, taking good care of each other and moving with deep gratitude and transformative joy

by listening, deeply, to one another's stories of resistance & resilience. by not being afraid of the silence

by honoring and centering femmes in the face of erasure. by encouraging creativity and self-expression in femme spirits

by empowering young LGBT leaders of today – making for a better World tomorrow

by centering parents, kids, caregivers, and families of all kinds as we work to create a nonviolent world

by amplifying the voices of the unheard, creating spaces to tell our stories, and exploring the ways that sound, music, and media intersect with community, creativity and identity-formation

by loving ourselves unconditionally throughout the mind and body

by confronting what’s difficult within our communities and within ourselves

by uniting our strengths, stories, and communities to advance racial and economic equity through media rights, access, and fair representation

by sharing 'Know Your Rights' information and working with our communities in creating safety strategies that keep us out of prisons and state custody

by healing, which is a revolutionary act; by dismantling and redesigning the systems that teach us to hurt each other and hate ourselves from the inside out

by dreaming awake. building the future and transforming states. tearing down prisons and reclaiming lakes

by grounding imagination as a tool for strategic visionary transformation and connecting translocal organizing brilliance

by loving and celebrating the abundance and the inherent beauty in our bodies with validation, resistance, and liberation

by investing in our collective liberation and sustainability, sharing resources, caring for one another, and dismantling capitalism

by creating the world that fosters the strong backs of the love wagers

by recognizing imbalance as an invitation to heal; realizing healing is our birthright; healing together or not healing at all

by planting seeds in gardens that sprout communities, grow relationships and harvest sovereignty

We Wage Love With…

broadcast media tools, sharing authentic community expressions

with radical research that honors the systems of knowledge that exist already in ourselves and our communities

with rituals; loving through loss; holding hard & finding joy; unlearning processes that teach us not to heal; living through the hard/heart

We Wage Love When We….

dismantle the ivory tower and transform our relationship to the academy

take control of technology from corporations & governments and put that control in the hands of our neighbors & communities

respond to the needs of the people, helping access and create knowledge that empowers communities

when we find new ways for our movements to connect and grow together

when we destroy doubt and aim love from within so it radiates out

when we rise up like dandelions

Opening Ceremony
Photo by Ara Howrani.

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