Press Release: National Theatre Performance

Updated: Aug 22


Vision from Prison Brings DC Middle-Schoolers to Premiere a Show at The National Theatre

Formerly incarcerated entrepreneur partners on youth program, culminating in performance at The National Theatre




WASHINGTON, D.C. (April 1, 2022) — In a unique multi-stakeholder collaboration, DC middle-schoolers will premiere a show at The National Theatre on April 21, 2022 starting at 7PM entitled Through Our Eyes. Formerly incarcerated entrepreneur Devin Smith and DC-based criminal justice advocacy nonprofit Voices Unbarred teamed up with The National Theatre Foundation, Georgetown University’s A.S.K., and The Social Justice School to make this show possible.


The performance represents the culmination of ANCRD Voices (pronounced “anchored voices”), a nine-week program that integrates community violence prevention and Theater of the Oppressed(T/O) techniques to facilitate social emotional learning and advocacy training. In this program students explore their personal visions and create advocacy pieces related to their perspectives on current social justice issues.


CEO of Ship and Anchor and Voices Unbarred board member Devin Smith remarks on what he believes is the value of the program,

“this is how you build an army of advocates, confident and equipped to advocate powerfully from lived experience. It’s a game changer, and I believe that’ll reflect in the performance.”

Smith initiated the ANCRD Voices program drawing from the “What’s Your Anchor” framework he began drafting while in prison nearly 10 years ago. Both Smith and Co-creator Lori Pitts, Voices Unbarred founder and Ally Theatre Creative Director, are alumni of Mayor Muriel Bowser Presets 202Creates Residency Program.


Tickets to this performance are free, but limited. You must register via Eventbrite. A reception and talkback will follow the performance. Audience members must be vaccinated and wear masks in order to attend.


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About Ship and Anchor: Ship and Anchor is a social impact and management consulting agency that helps drive value for organizations primarily through communications, value-driven relationship-building, and education and training for businesses that market to or serve its four Impact Groups: 1) Current/Formerly Incarcerated, 2) BIPOC, 3) Students, 4) Entrepreneurs/Small Business. For more info visit www.shipandanchorbiz.com.


About Voices Unbarred: Voices Unbarred centers the voices of people impacted by incarceration, and collaborates with theatre practitioners and policy organizations to creatively reimagine the prison system and advocate for change. Through theatre and justice workshops, script writing, and interactive performances, participants affected by incarceration in the DC area are given a platform to share their stories, tackle complex issues, ad lead the criminal justice reform movement.


About The National Theatre Foundation: The National Theatre Foundation is a 501(c)(3) non-profit entity responsible for the continued operation and preservation of The National Theatre. Established in 1835, The National Theatre is the oldest continuously operating business on Pennsylvania Avenue and home to over 6,000 productions. The non-profit, founded in 1974, is charged with maintaining and strengthening the physical theatre, as well as engaging with the broader DC community through three free programs: Community Stage Connections, Saturday Morning Live! At the National, and Teens Behind the Scenes. The Board and staff serve as stewards in service to the goals of the National Theatre Foundation. For more information, please visit www.nationaltheatre.org.


Contact Info:

Devin Smith

dsmith@shipandanchorbiz.com

(202) 798-0917



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