Arkansas PBS looking for new voices to shine light on personal experiences in America

Local News

CONWAY, Ark. (News release) — Arkansas PBS is looking for new voices that will share their personal life experiences of living in America and to help form the “PBS American Portrait”.

Read the full statement from PBS here:

“Arkansas PBS and The Yarn, a storytelling initiative based in Little Rock, are seeking participants to share and shape their true life experiences of living, working and dreaming in the U.S. for “PBS American Portrait,” a national conversation about what it means to be an American today. In an effort to shine a light on life in Arkansas and share it with a broader audience, Arkansas PBS will make The Yarn’s workshops available to the public for the first time with two virtual opportunities during August.

On Thursday, Aug. 27, at 7 p.m., participants will share their personal hopes, dreams and successes with the prompt “My American dream …” A second workshop, scheduled for Saturday, Aug. 29, at 10 a.m., will explore career paths, proudest accomplishments, sacrifices and challenges like unemployment with the prompt “To me, work means …” A national producer from “PBS American Portrait” will be joining the workshops.

Participants in each workshop will gain tangible skills on how to structure their experiences for an audience and connect with others around these shared themes. Participants will leave the workshop with the makings of a story ready to post to the “PBS American Portrait” website. Teachers, poets, parents, musicians, students, athletes and others have already shared their stories about life in Arkansas from Monticello to Pine Bluff, Ulm to Brinkley, Paragould, Bella Vista, Bismarck, Cave City, Mountain View, Arkadelphia and other cities throughout the state. Their personal experiences can be uncovered at myarkansaspbs.org/americanportrait, on Facebook (facebook.com/arkansaspbs) or at pbs.org/americanportrait.

Offered free to participants, these workshops are for those interested in communicating and connecting with others, making sense of their experiences through narrative or simply finding their voices. Registration is required at myarkansaspbs.org/americanportrait and is limited to 40 participants per workshop. Each participant will receive a “PBS American Portrait” storytelling kit.

More information about “PBS American Portrait” is available at myarkansaspbs.org/americanportrait. Viewers may join and follow the conversation at #AmericanPortraitPBS on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram to view the thousands of stories already being submitted. Arkansans who have recently participated in the project include poets Chris of North Little Rock responding to “When I step outside my door …,” Stacey of Little Rock responding to “You don’t know what it’s like to …” and Crystal of Little Rock responding to “What gets me out of bed in the morning,” among several others.”

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