Tag Archives: art for social good

Tree of Fire [Funding Fridays]

A late Funding Fridays, but The Roots and Wings Project and I tried to schedule something earlier and I dropped the ball. They are now in their last 14 hours of fund-raising and I’d love to give them an extra push.

True Art for Social Good, not just directly but in sharing stories often hidden from sight.

Their indiegogo campaign. If you miss the deadline, there is also a link to donate directly.

20121013224905-TREE_OF_FIRE_Image_no_textTREE OF FIRE 

When a Magnolia tree catches fire in an aged and ominous women’s prison, three female inmates forgotten and left to perish are jolted as their lives are threatened, into memories of their past that inform the truth of their souls and the urgent need to expose the inhumanity of the prison to the world.

Tree of Fire has a rich history with staged readings, excerpt performances and fund raisers at UCLA, Lincoln Heights Jail, Theatre of Note, and S.P.A.R.C. at the Old Jail in Venice. The play was written to be performed in abandoned prisons. We were challenged with the extreme bureaucracy that is housed in these site-specific venues.  The Roots and Wings Project realized the story was being held back. In order to get it told, a collective decision was made to find a new kind home for the play. We now have a home at Inner City Arts’ The Rosenthal Theater opening International Women’s Day 2013. We are raising the funds to mount the play into full production.

By supporting Tree of Fire,  you are a part of giving voice to a timely play that raises critical conversation about gender, race, and the Prison Industrial Complex.  Bringing this piece to stage will allow audiences a peek into the heart of the incarcerated: dispelling myths, raising awareness and getting people informed on this urgent matter. This story is universal, eliciting questions about what make us feel trapped in life and what can set ourselves free from those barriors.

“Tree of Fire” sings and screams for those who have no voice. It’s a modern day “Trojan Women” that leads us on a mythic journey into the minds and spirits of incarcerated women.  We meet women who are separated from their families, from their lives, from time itself.  Never self pitying and often very funny, this piece takes us into the soul of their experience.  Style and content are boldly woven together to give us an intimate encounter with the heart of the imprisoned.” -Leon Martell, Playwright

lincoln heights jail reading

Lincoln Heights Jail Staged Reading


The Roots and Wing Project believes in the power of the past and future to ignite the present, standing strong in roots with vision in wings.  The Roots and Wings Project is a politically charged, socially transformative theatre company that brings attention to truth and gives voice to the unnamed, unspoken and misunderstood through theatrical innovation and multi-media collaboration. Fusing traditional theatre with hip-hop, poetry, music and visual art, the company unites a wide range of artists and audiences from different communities around the world. The Roots and Wings Project is a 501c3 Non-Profit Organization.


We need over $30,000 to bring this play to life, moving all those who experience it. You get to be a direct part of making this magic happen. We are asking for $10,000 as a base start to get us going.

Venue: $5,000

Rehearsal Space: $2,000

Casting Director: $800

Publicity and Marketing: $2,000

Social Media: $1000

Administrative Fees including Artistic Director, Development Director, Social Media Consultant: $3,000

Directorial Fees: $1,500

Set Design: $1,500

Music Design:$1,500

Tech Crew: $1,500

Projectionist: $1,000

Costume Design: $1,500

Photographer: $500

Videographer: $500

Panelists: $400

Bonded Security: $1,000

Stage Manager: $1,500

Assistant Director: $800

Lighting Design: $1,000

Actors: $3,000

Printing: $1,000

We have unique rewards such as a signed script, tickets to the theater, CD of the Tree of FireScore, dinner with the writer and producers, t-shirts, acknowledgement in the program, and associate producer credits.


This project is extremely valuable to you and to the world. By helping bring this story to life, you are directly contributing to the critical conversation of The Prison Industrial Complex. Never before in history, here in the U.S. or in any other part of the world, have there been more incarcerated people. Many of these inmates are youth. Light needs to be brought to this emergency of mass incarceration. Tree of Fire does just that, using strong storytelling that weaves humor, magic and music to help tell the tale.
The Roots and Wings Project has an extraordinary track record having sold-out our last site-specific play, A Record of Light, that ran in Los Angeles’ treasured 18,000 sq. ft. cultural hub, The Last Bookstore in Fall 2011. We also sold-out the 99 artist Occupy This! event at the new Casa 0101 Theater in Boyle Heights in 2012. All of our events in support of Tree of Fire have garnished enormous support, drawing large audiences and stellar artists.

After a four-year journey, we are excited to see Tree of Fire bloom into full production allowing artists and audiences to experience the powerful transmutation this play offers.


If you are unable to contribute funds, you are still able to help us in ways that matter.

You can get the word out by letting your community know about the piece and encouraging them to help bring this story to life.

Arts Broadcasts Oct 8-14

I’m still experimenting with formats & topics to create the best stories. This week begins an ongoing series on Bullying in the Arts as well as special segments on the NASA Social to Goldstone I’m attending Oct. 15th. Comment on the videos & tell me which ones you like the best!

Videos will be linked as they become available, or follow this blog/subscribe to YouTube for notifications for the live interviews. All times are Pacific Standard.


2:30pm – Indianapolis Opera Singer & Writer Ellen Denham [Artist Check-in, the Indy Convergence]

Watch the video


7pm – Bullying in the Arts Ep1: Gregory Crafts, Writer of “Friends Like These”

Watch the video



12pm – NASA Social to Goldstone Ep1: Why Amy Pillé & Bill Dunford are excited.

Watch the video.


2pm – Bullying in the Arts Ep2: Jeffrey Wylie, Writer & Performer of “Texas Loves Lyla”

Watch the video.



10am – Web Series Watch w/ Patty J. Robinson

A new monthly series to bring you the best in that wild west of entertainment: the Web Series!

WATCH the video. EPISODE 2 is Oct. 24th at 10am.


9am – Funding Fridays

Filmmakers of STAY THEN GO, a film about a boy with autism that’s raising money for post-production.

WATCH the video. Special thanks to Chad Kukahiko for telling me about this film.


UPDATE: 12pm Live Stream is delayed until mid afternoon.

Dia de los Muertos – Free Community Arts Workshops at 24th ST Theatre

WATCH the video. SEE the pictures.


8pm – live from NASA Social Dinner. Meet attendees!


See the full schedule here

Subscribe to YouTube

Behind the scenes on Facebook.com/theCMJstories

Don’t miss a segment @CindyMarieJ


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