Hope Event - Robert Sturman / Matthew Cuban Hernandez

In February 2023, Learning Courage hosted our third annual virtual event. This year our theme was Hope, a word our team feels fuels our work in many ways. Hope gives us strength. Your hope allows you to move forward and it takes strength to tell your story, to stand up and speak out for change, to shift damaging cultural systems and dynamics that lead to harm, and to heal from sexual abuse and violence. This year our performers were inspired by our theme of hope and showed it through dance, poetry, song, spoken word, and images; several of them even created new pieces, especially for our event. One of our performers joins us as our host this year. Proclaimed as one of the “purest contemporary voices” by National Public Radio, Amikaeyla Gaston is a force for change. She is a nuanced thought-leader, author, public speaker, and performer, and MTV says “her sultry sound is like listening to velvet waterfalls.”

A dedicated yoga practitioner, photographer Robert Sturman has increasingly focused on capturing the timeless grace and embodied mindfulness of Asana in his work. Reminding us that there is beauty everywhere, Sturman's honors include Official Artist of the 47th Annual GRAMMY Awards, 2010 FIFA World Cup Artist Representing America, and Official Artist 2008 United States Olympics. Sturman has also been the subject of two separate New York Times articles celebrating his photographs of yoga from around the world. Robert Sturman ~ Artist/Photografía 

Matthew ‘Cuban’ Hernandez is a poet and actor who has toured as far as Abu Dhabi and to nearly every major city in the United States and Europe, performing, teaching and coaching poetry. Working with Street Poets Inc, Matthew has spent the last six years working in youth detention centers across Los Angeles County. He is a Lead Teacher and Co-Founder of the Spoken Literature Art Movement and has opened for artists such as Wu-Tang. Matthew has performed widely and is a three time Southern Fried poetry slam champion. Matthew Cuban Hernandez (Street Poets, Inc.)

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