Who I Am; Celebrating Me has helped businesses and organizations such as Nike Corporation, Concordia College, Portland Christian School, Margaret Scott Elementary, Faubion K-8, Roosevelt, Jefferson High School, Pacific University and more, celebrate Black History through engaging, informative and powerfully-uplifting residencies and performances that educators and community members alike say is "breathtaking" and "amazing". But don't take their word for it. Come see for yourself!
Who I Am Celebrating Me is a community of youth and adult artists exploring history through the arts. From soul-encompassing singing and dancing to heartfelt poetry and prose, the production highlights a montage of African-American figures and movements of past and present. Formed in 2007 by Shalanda Sims (shalandasims.com) in response to the lack of celebratory events in Portland during Black History month, Who I Am Celebrating Me dared to fill a void. Not only were there little to no events at the time but the topic was not widely discussed in schools so in an effort to educate youth, show them something they could be proud of and celebrate all year long, educators, business owners, youth, adults, senior citizens, artists, community members...gathered to sing songs, recite poetry, and share oral history. To date, through partnerships with schools, businesses and other community organizations, Who I Am Celebrating Me has helped educate more than 10,000 audience members about the rich history and contributions of African-Americans.
Our college students return year-after-year to participate in the celebration. From top to bottom; Elijah Sims as Langston Hughes and Gabriel Evans as Malcolm X