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The James R. Halsey Foundation of the Arts presents "Pretty...Ugly"

originally published: 02/03/2022

The James R. Halsey Foundation of the Arts presents "Pretty...Ugly"

(TRENTON, NJ) -- The James R. Halsey Foundation of the Arts (JRH), a 501c3 non-profit agency dedicated to providing quality arts education and mentoring to youth in the City of Trenton and greater Mercer County area, presents “Pretty…Ugly”, a celebration of film and student exhibition to be held at 5:30pm on Thursday, February 24, 2022 at the Historic Mill Hill Playhouse located at 205 East Front Street in Trenton. 

The student exhibition will be preceded by a private showing and World Premiere of episode one of “Common Ground,” a docu-series focusing on adjudicated youth and officers from the Trenton Police Department. In attendance will be city, county, and state officials.

“Pretty….Ugly” will provide students with the opportunity to showcase their work and give the public insight into the work of the Foundation as they view projects completed by JRH students from the Trenton area as part of the Let’s Film class. The exhibition is open to the public and appropriate for families and children of all ages. “I am so proud of this unique group of students who stepped up to complete their films after taking all of their classes online during Covid. They were motivated to rise above the challenges and were finally able to meet for filming and the completion of their projects,” said Founder and CEO Joseph Halsey. “As an organization we couldn’t be more excited to share their work with the public.”

Admission to the event is free, registration is required. Click here to register.

The Let’s Film program offers comprehensive film classes where youth take a hands-on approach to learning how to create short films from pre to post production. Topics discussed include crime in urban communities, black on black violence, and mental health issues among others.

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The Generation Change program at JRH is focused on interviewing adjudicated at-risk inner-city youth on how they would solve challenging problems in their community. These interviews are filmed, and short documentaries are created and shown within the local community to create a starting point for conversation and change.

The James R Halsey Foundation of the Arts (JRHFA) is dedicated to enriching the quality of life for youth (ages 13-20) by providing a safe and educational environment that utilizes the art of filmmaking to foster personal growth and creativity. The initiative is accomplished by application of a stimulating course curriculum that exposes program participants to every aspect of the creative process while providing life skills training to inspire positive change and prepare youth for long-term employment. The Foundation was founded in 2017 after a local native of Trenton NJ, Joseph A. Halsey, completed the filming of an award-winning short documentary titled ‘If I Were Mayor.’ After sitting down with local Trenton area youth to discuss how they would fix the problems their city was facing, the idea of teaching kids film while inspiring change was born.



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