July 9 – 27, 2007

LAPD’s summer workshop for Performers and other Artists, Students, Activists, People Working for Social Change.
changeXchange focuses on community engagement and the development of performance work.

About the Project

Los Angeles Poverty Department’s Workshop in Art and Social Change

changeXchange LAPD’s irregularly scheduled 3 week summer workshop in art for social change is back as part of LAPD’s year long project UTOPIA/dystopia which addresses the dynamic of development and displacement that is currently rocking downtown Los Angeles.

Who wins and who loses in the development process?
Who gets to project a vision of the future?
And ultimately, who gets to be downtown?

UTOPIA/dystopia is a series of art activities, grass roots hearings and research projects, culminating in performance events. UTOPIA/dystopia, the project, seeks to project and inject the vision of marginalized people living and working in downtown into civic debate about the future of downtown Los Angeles. changeXchange participants will contribute to UTOPIA/dystopia events and development, while pursuing their own artistic trajectory.

changeXchange focuses on community engagement and the development of performance work.

  • Community interaction includes meetings and volunteer work with grass roots organizations working for social justice on Skid Row.

Meetings included: Steven van Zile about SRO Inc., participating in DWAC’s Women Needs Assessment Survey, General Dogon’s training for monitoring the BIDs, UCEPP’s Health Realization, Steve Diaz about affordable housing, Gary Philips about cocaine and ‘Agents & Assets’, volunteering at the Hippy Kitchen, LACAN’s ROC meeting, Fred Dewey about Beyond Baroque, Dan Froot, Sojourn Theater’s director Michael Rohd, Glimpses of Utopia, picnic in the Elysian park.

  • changeXchange performance workshops are about understanding and articulating your Skid Row experience through performance.  Each weekday will start with a 3 hour long workshop, led by LAPD artists and guest artists.

Workshop takes place at the Church of the Nazarene in Skid Row,
Monday-Friday, 10:00am – 1:00pm & 2:00 – 5:00pm and some activities in the evenings and on the weekends.

  • Workshops with LAPD director John Malpede will explore generating performance materials from ‘found texts’; public documents, news accounts and on the ground investigations which include attending public meetings, conducting interviews and personal experience.
  • Performer and LAPD associate director Henriette Brouwers (LAPD’s la Llorona, Weeping Women of Skid Row) will develop individual and group improvisation through movement and voice techniques based on corporeal mime and African dance.
  • Playwright and bebop poet Ron Allen (LAPD’s Fried Poetry) will use poetry to generate utopian/dystopian texts and explore the heights and depths of personal and collective experience.

Take what you learn, transform it through your own genius, passion and commitment and use it in your future projects.

  • If you choose, you can stay in safe, affordable housing on Skid Row provided for absolutely free by project partner SRO Housing, Inc.



changeXchange participants: Jennifer Musto, Therese Ritchie, Anja Stroobants, Malene Nielsen, Maurice Udon, Riccarlo Porter, Lorinda Hawkins, Tony Parker, Rickey C. Mantley, KevinMichael Key, Chas Jackson, Sashae Siatui, Melina Bielefelt.

Project Funders

changeXchange is funded in part by the National Endowment for the Arts.