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For the past three years, twins Omari and Akilah Newton have worked side by side for their annual Black History School Tour.
It is an event organized by Akilah through her organization, Overture With The Arts (OWTA), which she formed in 2009.
This year’s school tour is called Triple ‘A’ (Artists, Athletes & Activism) and was inspired by former NFL player Colin Kaepernick’s quiet act of protest against injustice towards African Americans by law enforcement.
Omari stated, “Watching the movement he helped ignite has been amazing. His action led me to reflect on the long legacy of celebrities using their platforms to speak on social causes.”
This year’s 45-minute presentation, TRIPLE ‘A’ pays tribute to: artists, athletes, and activists such as NFL’s Colin Kaepernick, Montreal’s own internationally renowned jazz pianist, the late Oscar Peterson, and the late Windsor Ontario’s Mary Ann Shadd will feature Omari Newton. The cross-Canada school tour will take place beginning February 5th to March 2.
Omari will make 30 to 40 Triple A presentations in schools across Quebec (Feb. 5 to 20), Alberta (Feb. 21 to 23) and British Columbia Feb. 26 to Mar. 2.
Akilah and Omari are twins born and raised in Montreal by parents who came from Trinidad & Tobago. Both are strongly connected to the arts and their communities, with each making significant contributions in their own way.
Akilah is trained in music, drama, dance, and stage production. After earning her Bachelor’s degree in Arts, she moved on to a degree in music & entertainment management. She says she “created this organization (OWTA) to expose youth to various art forms and provide them with opportunities to discover and develop their own artistic talents.”
The organization offers training in acting, music, dance and vocal training from a team of trained professionals. The programs are either free or offered at a very low cost, enabling as many students as possible to explore their dreams.
Omari is a playwright, stage & screen actor, stand-up comedian, slam poet & activist.