The Opening Doors Project
Established in the fall of 2021 by Alastair Moock and Stacey Babb, The Opening Doors Project, Inc. aims to elevate voices of color and advance conversations about race through the arts. By bringing new cultural experiences to suburban Boston communities and viewing audiences across the nation, Opening Doors strives to promote racial justice work. Our programs are rooted in our conviction that white people have a role to play in advancing racial justice; that fulfilling this role requires interaction with new ideas and perspectives; and that the arts are a powerful medium for sparking advocacy.
To date, we have produced an online music and interview series hosted by co-founder Alastair Moock. The series features top national and largely BIPOC talent playing music and discussing issues related to diversity and inclusion.
The Opening Doors Project also produces live events that celebrate artists of color in our community and beyond. We aim to encourage family conversations around why DEI matters and the program described below is the first in what we hope will become an ongoing series of live musical events featuring a diverse roster of performers under the banner of “The Opening Doors Project.”
In collaboration with Follow Your Art Community Studios, ODP is producing an in-person, all ages, family friendly concert and community art event for greater Melrose on June 11, 2022. The concert features singer-songwriters and educators Reggie Harris and Alastair Moock and the Boston City Singers Tour Choir and World Rhythm Ensemble (BCS). Alastair and Reggie will perform their show “Race and Song: A Musical Conversation,” a program that explores history and current events through the lens of race. BCS, a wonderfully diverse high school choral and percussion group based in Dorchester, will perform material from their own catalog of Civil Rights songs and spirituals.
Follow Your Art Community Studios (FYACS), a Melrose-based organization that builds community by supporting creative endeavors for all and strives to use art to promote social justice and action, has engaged Artists for Humanity (AFH) a Boston-based organization that paves the way to self-sufficiency for under-resourced teens through training and paid employment in art and design. A mentor and youth artists from AFH will work with FYACS staff and Melrose students on a collaborative art project. Prior to the live event there will be a workshop where Melrose youth will learn about design fundamentals from their AFH counterparts and together they will discuss themes and imagery related to belonging, connection, and inclusion; ultimately co-designing a custom line art piece. The public attending the concert will be invited to add color to the mural.
To our knowledge Melrose has never hosted a public, large-scale musical program focused on DEI. This concert, we hope, will plant the seed for more cultural events that elevate voices of color in our community. We believe that such events will help build bridges in Melrose, attract and speak to families of color, and help shift the perception of what Melrose looks and sounds like, bringing our city closer to its ideal of “One community, open to all.”
Stacey Babb, ProducerSEE MEMBER PROFILE