Our Motown Heritage (Part 33)
Motown Youth Opportunity
THE YOUTHVILLE STORY

by Robert Dennis

Anthony Thompson, is a 2005 Recording Institute Of Detroit Recording Engineering Program graduate is an instructor for Youthville. Anthony and Youthville actively help keep Motown a hit factory by working with the Motorcity's youth..  

Youthville is a privately funded educational center in the New Center area of Detroit servicing thousands of young men and women between ages 11 and 19.  Motown Heritage Club member, Anthony Thompson is an instructor for several programs.  Youthville is a great place to entertain youthful minds, build character and to start building career skills.  Anthony received his Motown Heritage Club Membership certificate this month from co-founder Harold Bowles.
 

Anthony and Harold Bowles

Anthony gave us a tour of the extensive Youthville facilities, and we have posted a Youthville Picture Tour, so you can experience the tour yourself.  Here's Anthony's story, in his own words:
 

History & Getting Intro The Music Business

What got me interested in the music business is that when I was younger I was hanging around RJ Rice (of RJ's Latest Arrival). Talking to RJ made me want be more than just an entertainer, but to be a CEO and learn how the business operates properly. I have relatives that sang with Stevie Wonder I even have people professionally in my family. And then Xzibit you know thatís my cousin also, soÖI have people in my family already involved in music.

I did different searches for schools and was actually going to Florida when I found out that we had a school here. I live and die for Detroit, everything I do is about building up Detroit. So when I found out we had a school here I just immediately came up there I didn't call or anything, just came right up. I had a great time there [at RID] and they challenged my mind.

I wasn't really going to RID just so I could be in the studio, but was going to be a business man on the business side. What changed, in the school, is that I started getting interested in actually putting the album together myself. Then too, the business man came though, "Hmm, I can save money also."  RID challenged my mind, and just made me more interested.

I have a degree from Michigan State University, with concentration in pre law and also in Music Theory. I went up there on a football scholarship. I wanted to do entertainment law. But, once I started working with my god brothers, I pretty much just fell in love with the music and that was more of my focus than anything. We built a little studio up there at Michigan State in a basement and we just started recording straight to the computer.

Resurrection Entertainment

We have a label. We do film. We're doing media, mass media, from websites to video editing, you name it, we pretty much have it covered, including digital photography. We plan on launching everything next year, 2007 and right now we have a few groups. I just want to start the label off with 5 groups and we're probably going to do our first releases next year, 2007.

Right now we're more focused on Resurrection Foundation. We just finished a business plan and proposal where we're going to be hosting a music conference, a fashion conference, sports conferences, and we're also doing a financial conference. I believe in giving back first because the community blessed me, gave to me and embraced me - so my first duty is to give back to my community.

We're going to go from there to launch Resurrection Entertainment and we're going to run that out of Youthville. We have 5 artists right now which we're trying to build up, record and promote.

Youthville

Youthville was founded to help get the kids in this area get off the streets and give them an opportunity because a lot of them don't have the opportunity technology-wise. Many don't even have internet at home.  I instruct digital music, pod casting, cell phone ringtones, and we're just getting started with our video editing program.

We service ages 11 to 19. And we also have the full fledged recording studio with classes like beat making, how to be a DJ, we have web radio. We're bringing in basic ProTools, and we have basic Reason right now. So we have a lot of things to offer. We also have instructors who are teaching string instruments, piano and playing drums. This is a great place to entertain your mind, build your character and start to build your career. So just come down here to Youthville, get scheduled, and signed up - its only $25 for the whole year. You can join and be part of any program. We have kids from all over the city and the suburbs. We have kids coming up from as far as West Bloomfield, same price for everyone and we only charge you $25 for a whole year.

Youthville is something that I wish I would have had coming around. I had to pay a lot of money in tuition to learn and through a program like Youthville I would have had an opportunity to learn many of these things for just $25. The importance of Youthville to our young is to help them capture their dreams and put those dreams to use at an earlier age. They're able to try out different things just to see what they're interested in. For example, many kids from this area don't get to try archery - you might find someone that was excellent with their archery and get a college scholarship. Its just a whole facet of different opportunities. In the area of the arts, we have animation classes to graphic design and students are able to do their own cartoons and storyboards. So they're just opening their minds to new heights.

We're open from Monday to Thursday from 2:30 to 9PM and then Friday it's from 2:30 to 11. Saturday we're open from 10 to 11. More than the 5,000 kids are registered but there are other programs that come in and use the facility also.
 

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Copyright 2006 Robert Dennis - All Rights Reserved USE OF THIS ARTICLE SUBJECT TO USER AGREEMENT

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