Guest blog post: Black Families’ Love Ones with Developmental Disabilities On Stage & In Film by Leroy Moore
Leroy Moore writes about race & disability issues for Poor Magazine and is the author of an upcoming history of Krip-Hop Nation. The following is an excerpt of a post he published on May 26, 2014 where he interviewed the Tatum family including their daughter Kei’Arie who has Down Syndrome. She is a featured actress in a short film produced by the Tatums, “I AM MORE.”
Leroy Moore: Ok my first question is how did the whole family become interested in this film & how did you all work together as a family on this project?
Tatum’s Family: We came together on this film to spread awareness about Trisomy 21 (Down Syndrome), on how bullying could be in the home. Also this film was made to show Kei’Aries’ and our whole family’s passion and ability as one unite, to create films for families. Working together was fun as we represent our company Better than Great (B.t.G) Entertainment Inc.
Leroy Moore: I was excited to see this movie as a Black disabled man. What was it that pushed you all to make this movie? Who is/are your target audiences?
Tatum’s Family: We felt that the special needs community would take a likening to this film because it was starring an actress Kei’Arie who has Down syndrome. Also we felt that this movie will bring attention to other film makers to write movies for our special needs community in giving our children/adults the full chance that strive for what they desire as authentic talent. Kei’Arie has been acting and modeling but never had the opportunity to get speaking roles until now.
Leroy Moore: Throughout my years of looking for movies/books on and by Black disabled people only recently I’m finally seeing more and more that look like me. Do you think that the Black community has been supportive or pushing to open more doors for Black disabled or families who like you all trying to produce movies etc.?
Tatum’s Family: We feel that our black community is open to supporting however, we as a whole seem like we need to hear or see about it first, and that I feel, needs to change. We as a whole should be more sensitive in helping push our special needs community in reaching their goals/dreams. Our job as parents, advocates and friends is to help individuals like Kei’Arie receive Grammy’s, Oscars, Billboard Awards, Best Actor, Number One Album, Doctor, Nurse, Lawyer or Judge degrees.
For the entire interview: http://poormagazine.org/node/5122
I AM MORE
I AM MORE on YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yf5cSfPqvms
Leroy F. Moore Jr. is founder of Krip-Hop Nation (KHN) on programs that empower persons with disabilities in arts, self-advocacy, and music. KHN’s International Movement travels around the world to provide workshops on disabilities initiatives and Human Rights for PWDs through music and hands on workshops/lectures & performances. Moore helped produce Pushed Limits 3 part radio series on Hip-Hop & artists with disabilities at KPFA 94.1 FM Berkeley, CA. in 2004 and also coordinated a workshop on Hip-Hop with community advocates with disabilities and LGBTQ persons at University of California at Berkeley. KHN has performed at other prestigious universities/colleges like New York University, NYU, Harvard and more. KHN also traveled to annual festivals like DADA Festival in Liverpool, UK and other venues in Germany, all over the US and Canada and is planning an Africa tour.
For more on Krip-Hop: http://poormagazine.org/krip_hop
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