The Department of Teaching and Learning at Ohio State will host the Third Annual Hip Hop Literacies Conference Friday and Saturday, Feb. 15 and 16.

"Pedagogies for Social Change" offers lectures, performances and workshops that explore issues that affect youth: education, racism, social identity, impoverishment, and social inequality in local and international communities.

The free conference will involve scholars, educators, artists and community members taking a closer look at the wider socio-cultural value of hip hop. Grammy nominated hip-hop artist MC YoYo will be featured.

Additionally, Marta Diaz of the Gallatin School will report on national trends in hip-hop education and Christopher Emdin, author of Urban Science for the Hip Hop Generation, who will discuss the use of hip hop in mathematics and science education.

Saturday's activities include The Rhyme Like a Girl Workshop with hip hop activist Toni Blackman.

For a complete calendar of events, visit Admission is free but registration is required.

Shadowbox Live recently concluded a successful Kickstarter campaign toward the production of a new original musical titled Underland.

For those unfamiliar, kicktarter is a grassroots funding mechanism allowing folks to pre-support art and artists' projects.

Inspired by Alice in Wonderland, Underland tells the tale of Albert Ice, a Vietnam veteran on a quest to find his daughter.

The show opens March 3.

Meantime, shadowbox continues its runs of Chicago, Between the Sheets and Best of Stage 2. Dig all the details at

Oh yeah, and as if all that's not enough, the (crazy successful) collaboration between Shadowbox and Opera Columbus, Opera Cabaret, will offer a second run of its presentation of La Boheme on Sundays starting Feb. 17.

The Beat has written about this quite a bit and so we (unduly) take some credit for its success.

Lastly, a reminder this Valentine's Day that BalletMet Columbus opens its production of the timeless love story Romeo & Juliet (we wrote about the show in last week's edition).

Visit for details.