The UC Theatre’s Youth Advisory Board are planning a showcase and open mic event at The UC Theatre on Monday, March 12th. General admission tickets are $5 online at the door and VIP is $25 online only. Doors open at 5:30pm and the show starts at 6:30pm.

Hosted by recording artists: Nancy & Nehemiah

Featuring: Maleik Dion, Art By KG, Leftover BowlskisLaDy-SN3AK,TheTwinz17T.C. MEJIA, UC LIL KAYLA , and more…

Planning for this event has been very challenging. I knew from the beginning that this wouldn’t be an easy job. It was inevitable that I would need a group of core team members to help pull this off. New Youth Advisory Board (YAB) members and graduates from the first cohort of our Concert Career Pathways program Bryan Fuentes (Development Coordinator) and Phil Katague (Assistant to the GM) have been grinding hard every step of the way. Their knowledge and dedication to the theatre is being proven everyday.

Although I have put on several other events in the Bay Area including Open Mics with Youth UpRising, Castlemont High School, LPS high school and Bay-Peace (Better Alternatives For Youth), this event at The UC Theatre feels much bigger. The team figured we would handle all of the administration and business aspects of putting on this event, and we would have the rest of the YAB members fill in where they would like to help, i.e. production, street team, social media posts, and floor staff. I have been wanting to put on this event since I first joined the YAB back in October 2015 and I am so excited that I am able to help finally bring it to life.The UC Theatre taught YAB members much of what we know about concert promotion, so what better way to show them we can do it, then to put on our own event!?  

I asked Bryan and Phil a series of questions:

Why did you decide to help with the showcase & open mic?
Bryan: When Shakeea first told me about the open mic idea and asked for my help, I was ecstatic. Because The UC Theatre is a community-minded space, I could see that hosting an open mic night would open up the doors to a different artistic demographic, bring in people from all over the Bay Area, and from a range of different ages to share art and build community. This open mic event will make the theatre even more accessible to the community than it already is!

Phil: It seemed like a good opportunity to bring together a community of local performers from all over the East Bay.

What is your role in putting on the Showcase & Open Mic?
Bryan: I helped in creating sponsorship proposals in order to make this event possible. I also helped during the event proposal stages to make sure we had included and thought of everything that needed to be accounted for.

Phil: I’m using my expertise and experience both putting on house shows out in the suburbs and crunching the financial data for shows at The UC Theatre to help put together the framework of what will hopefully turn into a recurring event.

What is your goal for the showcase & open mic?
Bryan: My goal for this open mic is to have a successful night of music, art and spoken word so that we may put on another open mic to continue to bring our community together.

Phil: To create a sense of community and help different young musicians network with each other to bolster their artistic careers.

“SPEAK YOUR TRUTH” Showcase & Open Mic will provide a more youthful and young adult community inclusion at The UC Theatre. Local artists and supporters of all ages from around the Bay Area will have a platform to share their gifts and talents. Proceeds from this event will go to support The UC Theatre’s education program.

~Shakeea T. Smith


Shakeea T. Smith is the Education Program Coordinator, Office Manager at The UC Theatre and one of the original members of the venue’s Youth Advisory Board. Shakeea is a local promoter and recording artist who performs throughout the Bay Area.