StoryCraft part 4: Intentions, a king, and the taste of freedom

Nov 18, 2021

The inaugural cycle of StoryCraft, a partnership between BPR and Asheville Writers In The Schools and Community, used an exploration of the senses as our north star during a series of six youth storytelling workshops at the Grant Center.  

Our goal was to facilitate a genuine experience of identity exploration at a variety of levels through: 

Simplicity: making sure their experiences and voices are captured without concerns of format, right or wrong.  

Emotional engagement of the senses: allowing the inner landscape to be voiced through it.  

Allowing students to ground on their past, present and future in exploring roots and wings. 

Artist mentor Cass Herrington leads an opening meditation activity to help ground the group at the beginning of a StoryCraft workshop.
Credit Micah Mackenzie

In Part 4 of our series – we bring you to some of those workshops to experience the profound impact of this collaboration between artist mentors and local middle school youth. We also share 12-year-old Clement Davidson’s rhythmic and empowering poem “Who I Am.” Clement developed his piece over the course of several weeks, and play a key role in encouraging his peers in writing and sharing their poems. 

Click the audio above to hear StoryCraft Part 4: Intentions, a king, and the taste of freedom 

Find links to the entire series and learn more about StoryCraft here

StoryCraft is featured in AWITSC’s annual El Arte de la Abundancia (The Art of Abundance) virtual showcase Saturday November 20th at 8:00 PM and in-person exhibit at the Arthur R. Edington Education & Career Center November 19-21. Reserve your free ticket here; COVID safety protocols are in place with limited viewings Friday, Saturday and Sunday. 

Artist mentor Micah Mackenzie offers guidance and encouragement to student photographers during the 2021 StoryCraft summer workshop series.


StoryCraft’s 2021 talent includes: Liam, Age 13; Clement, Age 12; Anderson, Age 12; Lorelei, Age 13; Isaiah, Age 11; Davaughn, Age 13; Jaydin, Age 13; Azia, Age 14; Tamia, Age 14; Emily, Age 14; West, Age 13; Emillia, Age 14; Keiya, Age 13; Ahmaria, Age 12; Antonio, Age 15; Tori, Age 15; Zaryah, Age 13; Payton, Age 13

StoryCraft 2021’s artist mentors include CocoEva Soleil LuzGuerrero Alcazar, Elizabeth Garland, Micah Mackenzie, Cass Herrington and Catherine Komp. Project managers and producers include Sekou Coleman, Micah Mackenzie and Catherine Komp. 

Thank you to Dr. Wesley Grant Sr. Southside Center Staff for welcoming StoryCraft during the summer 2021 program and assisting with the StoryCraft session: Jessica Johnston, Facility Manager; Alic Wynn, Facility Supervisor; Khadeesha Crumbly, Zuke Samon and Corden Floyd, Summer Program Staff.

StoryCraft is part of the America Amplified initiative, a national public media collaboration focused on community engagement reporting.

Funding for StoryCraft comes in part from: Asheville Writers in the Schools, BPR’s McGuire Fund for Journalism, America Amplified, Asheville Area Arts Council Grassroots Arts Program and the North Carolina Arts Council Arts Equity Project.