Dear Friends, Supporters & Family:
This Giving Tuesday, please join us in celebrating a remarkable milestone! In 1973, the Inner City Ensemble initiated its mission of offering at-risk, under-served teenagers in Paterson, NJ cost-free dance and theatre training, and also producing free performances for local communities. Five decades later, we maintain a performance troupe, offer innovative programming, including our Dual Language Arts Program for fifty 3rd to 5th graders at Full Service Community School #15 in Paterson, NJ, as we acknowledge our history and founder, Ralph Gomez, during our 50th Anniversary.
It is well-documented that when you introduce the arts to children at an early age, they benefit from positive outlets that allow them expression and growth. In addition to cost-free arts training and performances in the Silk City, our non-profit supports new dance-theatre works that address cultural identity, social justice and reform and immigration issues–the repertory is created primarily by Executive Artistic Director, Nicholas Rodriguez, and our alumni.
Our 2024 Goals
- Expanding our Dual Language Arts Program (DLAP) within Paterson Public Schools. (Classes, taught in Spanish-English, offer an introduction to dance and theater and conclude with a public performance).
- Initiating an arts program at the Great Falls Youth Center in Paterson, NJ, in partnership with the New Jersey Community Development Corporation with funding from the Regional Foundation. The program will address culture and immigration via poetry and dance training and conclude with public showings.
- Re-establish our Summer Arts Institute during a time of year when healthy, constructive activities for children and teenagers are desperately needed.
- Present a staged reading of Nicholas Rodriguez’s, Esperanza, Por Fin (Hope at Last), a semi-autobiographical play that will integrate dance, theatre and magic realism.
The Inner City Ensemble is grateful to our funders, the Passaic County Cultural and Heritage Council, the City of Paterson, the Geraldine R. Dodge Foundation’s One Square Mile initiative, and the Princeton Area Community Foundation Arts & Culture Renewal grants. But, we need additional support to ensure more community outreach.
Please Donate Now. (Give once or make a monthly commitment.) Your support will help us achieve additional milestones, while introducing the arts to children most in need of creative engagement and social emotional support.
“I was an introverted 12 year-old before training at the Inner City Ensemble. Today, I have the confidence to perform, mentor, teach and to contribute to my city, county and New Jersey as an arts ambassador and advocate.” Nicholas Rodriguez, Director