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Thu, Feb 22


Arts For Learning Md Blacktastic Virtual Festival

Directed by Culture Queen

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Arts For Learning Md Blacktastic Virtual Festival
Arts For Learning Md Blacktastic Virtual Festival

Time & Location

Feb 22, 2024, 9:00 AM


About the event

Blacktastic: Children's Festival of Maryland + DC Black History & Culture returns in February

Fourth annual virtual celebration to engage tens of thousands of students through the arts

This Black History Month, students across Maryland and DC will celebrate the joy of Black history and culture through the arts at Blacktastic: A Children’s Festival of Black History & Culture—an arts integrated, performance-packed virtual experience produced by the nonprofit Arts for Learning Maryland. On Thursday, February 22 from 9:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m., Blacktastic will feature four enriching performances — good for ALL grade levels — performed by teaching artists that enhance classroom curriculum. Using music, theater, hip-hop, and spoken word poetry, talented teaching artists such as Drew Anderson, Baba Bomani Armah, Jamaal “Mr. Root” Collier, Tracie Jiggetts, Debra Mims, and Sole Defined’s Quynn Johnson will introduce students to important historic Black leaders from Maryland and DC — including Thurgood Marshall, Senator Verda Freeman Welcome, and living legends like National Great Blacks In Wax Museum cofounder Dr. Joanne Martin, and Mezzo Soprano Opera Singer Denyce Graves (who will present a workshop during the program!). 

By infusing traditional learning with artistic expression, Blacktastic transforms the learning experience while reinforcing lessons in social studies, history, and social-emotional learning with curriculum-aligned content. Students at Blacktastic will also take a virtual field trip to The National Great Blacks in Wax Museum, the Verda Freeman Welcome Memorial Bridge, Thurgood Marshall’s monument, and Denyce Graves private vocal studio inside the historic Peabody Conservatory. Attendees will also participate in Black History Trivia and receive an activity booklet filled with creative challenges to support classroom learning. Artist performances will include students themselves, including those from Baltimore Arts Internship, Baltimore City College, Suitland High School’s Visual and Performing Arts Program, and Peabody Conservatory.  

Last year, more than 43,000 students from every county in Maryland attended Blacktastic. Educators are invited to register today to bring their classes or entire schools to this virtual experience. 

NEW this year: Students and classes can star in Blacktastic by participating in the Black History Bop! Classes are invited to record their own version of this, new, original song and line dance created specifically for Blacktastic by teaching artists Quynn Johnson, Jessica "Culture Queen" Hebron, and Baba Bomani. Student dances will be included in the Blacktastic program! 

Said Jessica Hebron, Arts for Learning Maryland’s Chief Program Officer, “Through Blacktastic, students will celebrate the joyful, beautiful history of Black culture in Maryland and DC by creatively exploring the stories of barrier-breakers, change makers, and inspirations for millions!”  

A variety of affordable pricing options are available to individual classrooms or entire schools. And all registrants will have access to the festival recording through June 2024. To learn more about Blacktastic, visit

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