OCTOBER 14, 7:00PM
Tickets $10-$15


We’ll be releasing unclaimed seats at 6:45PM. To get on the waiting list, please call J.R.: 773.772.7248 EXT 24

Featuring HBO Def Poet Roger Bonair-Agard, Young Chicago Author Poet Jose Olivarez & Free Street Youth Artist Malikah Saunders

An open workshop with Paul Flores to follow OCTOBER 15, 2:00PM
Suggested donation of $10. Reserve your seat here.

Combining hip-hop theater, spoken word, video and a gangster puppet show, Mr. Flores portrays numerous characters that live in San Francisco’s Mission District, including Latino bohemians, techies, and immigrants, to confront the issue of gentrification and its effect on local communities.

Download the Paul Flores Press Release and You’re Gonna Cry Flyer

PAUL FLORES is a published poet, performance artist, playwright and well known spoken word artist. His work explores the intersection of urban culture, Hip-Hop and transnational identity. Flores’ PEN Award winning novel Along the Border Lies reflects his youth spent between Tijuana, Mexico and San Diego developing a border consciousness. His spoken word poem “Brown Dreams” from Def Poetry on HBO has been viewed on YouTube nearly 100,000 times, and continues to inform and influence young people all over the United States.  In May 2011, Flores was named the San Francisco Weekly’s 2011 Best Politically Active Hip-Hop Performance Artist. His play REPRESENTA! was directed by Danny Hoch, produced by San Francisco International Arts Festival and premiered at the Hip-Hop Theater Festival in 2007 at La Pena Cultural Center. Flores is a highly respected youth arts development specialist. As a co-founder of Youth Speaks, he introduced spoken word to hundreds of thousands of youth all over the country, from native reservations, to public schools, to juvenile halls, to counseling centers. He helped develop the national platform for young people to build peer relationships and strategize toward a better future through the Brave New Voices: National Teen Poetry Slam, now seen on HBO. Flores has twice received the National Performance Network’s Creation Fund, and was recently awarded his third CCI Investing in Artists Grant, an NEA Theater grant and a NALAC Fund for the Arts grant. He now teaches Hip-Hop Theater and Spoken Word at the University of San Francisco.


  1. Paul Flores says:

    Chicago Free Streeters!
    I am so humbled to present my show to you all. I worked really hard on developing a solo show that would encompass my style as a spoken word artist, as well as use theater to convey the story from mulitiple characters perspective. The show took me over two years to develop. This transition from Spoken Word to Theater is not easy. Hip-Hop has helped me find my niche for the transition by offering an aesthetic (artistic sytle and technique) that speaks to the many characters already in Hip-Hop. What is the difference between a B-Boy battle and a fight in Shakespeare? Any B-Boy worth his salt is also a hell of a character, and that character informs his style of dance, which tells a story both of where he is coming from (legacy) and where he is going (destiny). If you think of Jay-Z’s “99 Problems”, MC’s are already setting scene and performing their character for you in their storytelling: “The year is 94 and in my trunk is raw/In my rear view mirror is the mother@$%#ing law/I got two choices ya’ll: pull over the car, or/bounce on the double, put the pedal to the floor.” Character? Yes Confict? Yes. Resoulution? Listen to the song.

    I am not saying rapping is theater. I am saying Hip-Hop is theater, in so many ways. In You’re Gonna Cry, I add the theme of urban renwal to my show, otherwise known as gentrification, and tell a story about my neighborhood from the perspective of ten characters. I hope you will come out to see in action, and then come to the workshop to discuss form and technique of Hip-Hop theater. We will apply what Jay Z is doing to performance and character development. I learned this technique working with Hip-Hop Theater masters Danny Hoch and Will Power. They taught me.

    Hope to see you Chicago!


    Paul Flores

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