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Young performers from Rio slums visit DC high school to show a way toward a brighter future

Media invited to workshop and performance at Bell Multicultural High School on Friday, Sept. 14

A group of 20 young Brazilian artists from Rio de Janeiro slums will spend the day at Bell Multicultural High School in Washington, D.C. on Friday, Sept. 14 to show how the performing arts are helping young people stay away from gang violence and prepare for full-time employment.

The group, Galpão Aplauso (“gal-POW a-PLOW-so,” Portuguese for “Applause Warehouse”) brings audiences to their feet with a dazzling mix of high-energy dance, acrobatics and theater set to samba, bossa nova and hip hop music.

The chance to perform is only part of Galpão Aplauso’s innovative training program. The arts activities attract young people from poor, high-risk backgrounds to participate in the program, and help them develop key life skills such as teamwork, perseverance and respect. The program also prepares the youth for jobs in industries with high demand for skilled workers, such as construction and retail; and works with employers to facilitate internships and job placement

Bell students, many of whom come from economically disadvantaged Hispanic or African American families, will attend Galpão Aplauso’s performances and the workshop (see full agenda below). Media interested in covering this event should contact Romina Nicaretta at Rominan@iadb.org or (202) 623-1555.

WHAT: Young Brazilian artists performance at DC’s Bell Multicultural High School

WHERE: 3101 16th Street, NW, Washington, DC

WHEN: Friday, September 14, 2012

AGENDA:

9:00 a.m. – 10:00 a.m.: First performance

10:30 a.m. – 11:30 a.m.: Workshop with Bell performing arts students

12:00 p.m. – 1:30 p.m.: Lunch at school cafeteria and media availability

2:00 p.m. – 3:00 p.m.: Second performance

3:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.: Media availability

The visit to Bell School is part of a series of performances Galpão Aplauso will stage in the United States. The Multilateral Investment Fund (MIF), part of the Inter-American Development Bank Group, has been a key supporter of the Galpão Aplauso program since 2009, providing both grant funding and expert advice on training methodologies. The MIF is sponsoring Galpão Aplauso’s visit to Washington, its first trip to the United States.

About the MIF

The Multilateral Investment Fund, a member of the Inter-American Development Bank Group, works with the private sector to support economic growth and poverty reduction in Latin America and the Caribbean. One of its main areas of focus is youth employment and entrepreneurship training. Over the past 18 years, the MIF has carried out more than 120 youth projects across the region, benefiting more than 235,000 disadvantaged young people in 24 countries. This month, the MIF is launching its new youth strategy, Give Youth a Chance: An Agenda for Action. For more information, visit www.fomin.org.

About Bell Multicultural High School

Bell Multicultural High School is a public school located in the neighborhood of Columbia Heights in Washington, D.C. The school is committed to creating learning experiences that focus on rigor, relevance and social justice. Over the past 32 years, Bell has successfully served 25,000 youths and their families, consistently graduated 90 percent of its senior class and developed strong relationships with the public and private sectors for the benefit of underserved youth.

The IDB, through its Solidarity Program, has provided support to Bell's early childhood and family literacy program which provides assistance to teen parents in completing high school while providing opportunities for raising healthy children and working toward self-sufficiency.