NEXT, MARTA Artbound, and WABE Studios Premiere “The NEXT Movement Season 1” Concert Series on PBS Passport

Series screening at the National Center for Civil and Human Rights, Tuesday November 21

(Atlanta, GA) NEXT Atlanta, MARTA Artbound  and WABE are proud to announce the celebration of the PBS Passport Season 1 premiere of the five-episode THE NEXT MOVEMENT Concert Series, happening Tuesday, November 21 from 7–9:30 p.m. at the National Center for Civil and Human Rights (100 Ivan Allen Jr Blvd NW, Atlanta, GA).

THE NEXT MOVEMENT features commissioned performances from five of Atlanta-based literary, visual, and musical artists. PBS Passport subscribers nationwide can stream the NPR Tiny Desk-style series online and on the PBS App with WABE Passport beginning November 21. 

Set against the backdrop of a specially commissioned MARTA train, THE NEXT MOVEMENT features powerful performances by some of Atlanta’s leading Atlanta creatives working at the intersection of art and social justice: poet and author Jon Goode; musician CC Sunchild; cellist Okorie ‘OkCello’ Johnson; poet and author Carlos Andres Gomez; and visual artist Melissa A. Mitchell. The series speaks to the impact of a global pandemic, a national racial reckoning and each artist’s answer to the question: Where do we go next? 

“Our film highlights This film allows us to highlight share some of the voices of our community’s most inspiring Black and Brown artists, many of whom still struggle to gain access to share their talents,hose talent,” said NEXT Executive Director P. Faith Carmichael. “We are grateful for this incredible partnership with Thanks to this incredible collaboration with MARTA Artbound and WABE Studios, towe are able to further amplify artistic expression to further in service to social change.” 

The series November 21 series screening at the National Center for Civil and Human Rights on November 21 includes an interactive community dialogue with the audience, artists, filmmakers, and some of the city’s notable leading art activists plus special performances. Wine and hors d’oeuvres will be served. Tickets are FREE, but space is limited. RSVP at PConvenient parking is available at the nearby World of Coca-Cola or Georgia Aquarium garages.

The series is the latest element It’s all part of “The NEXT Movement” campaign, a multi-platform arts and social action effort launched in 2022 by NEXT and MARTA Artbound. that The project aims to elevate the voices of Atlanta’s artists who express the  to address the community’s post-pandemic dreams and challenges, while harnessing the connective power of mass transit to ignite meaningful conversations.

“We are When MARTA was approached about the campaign, we were thrilled excited for the opportunity to further showcase Atlanta’s vibrant and diverse artistic community,” said MARTA Artbound Director Katherine Dirga. “This film exemplifies the link between art, social justice, and forward motion., and Through through our continued partnership with NEXT, MARTA has extended has been able to amplify its role as a community connector—engaging Atlantans around the critical issues that affect us most.”

Earlier this year, WABE joined the partnership as the media home for the compelling series, airing it as part of its WABE Presents original programming and on its national PBS Passport online platform. 

“WABE is excited to bring such an incredibly moving piece of art like THE NEXT MOVEMENT series to the entire PBS network,” said WABE President and CEO Jennifer Dorian. “AmplifyingWe considered amplifying Atlanta’s arts and culture is essential to our mission role as Atlanta’s public media station.”

THE NEXT MOVEMENT film and broader campaign is made possible thanks to the generous support of The Integral Group, The National Center for Civil and Human Rights, Arts and Entertainment Atlanta, Orange Barrel Media, and The National Black Arts (NFBAF).

To learn more visit or @MARTA_Artbound on Instagram. 

To subscribe to WABE Passport, go to


About the NEXT Movement

The NEXT Movement” is  a multi-platform arts and social action campaign led by local arts organization NEXT and MARTA Artbound. As part of the campaign, NEXT and MARTA have commissioned five Atlanta-based artists to create artworks of various genres that speak directly to the global pandemic and the racial reckoning that have rocked communities of color over the past two years.

In addition to the five featured artists, The NEXT Movement campaign will feature several  leading Atlanta creatives, speaking to this moment and to the role of art as inspiration for us all. That list includes nationally-renowned visual artist Charly Palmer, rising star curator and visual artist Tracy Murrell, curator of African Art for the High Museum of Atlanta Lauren Tate Baeza, CEO of The Integral Group and leading art patron Egbert Perry and National Black Arts Executive Director Stephanie Owens.

About NEXT

NEXT-Atlanta showcases the most aspiring stars in the visual, musical and literary arts while, at the same time, galvanizing the city’s creative class into a potent force for change.

About MARTA Artbound

MARTA’s public art program, Artbound provides visual and performing art experiences dedicated to helping our customers enjoy the ride.

About WABE

WABE is Atlanta’s original, independent, non-profit sources for news and local stories. Our stations deliver fact-based journalism and inclusive, engaging, cultural content that inform and connect the millions who call the Greater Atlanta area home.

About The National Center for Civil and Human Rights

The Center, founded in 2014, is a museum and human rights educational institution located in Atlanta, GA, the cradle of civil rights. We create dynamic and empathy-building experiences, teach history’s connection to the present, generate brave and difficult conversations about necessary issues, and inspire the change-maker in each of us to promote civil and human rights in our communities and the world. The Center connects the U.S. civil rights movement of the 1950s and 1960s to global human rights movements for the rights of people of color, women, immigrants, people with disabilities, LGBTQIA+ people, and other marginalized groups. Through our Diversity, Equity and Inclusion training experiences, our Truth and Transformation initiative, expansive educational offerings, and immersive and engaging storytelling we inspire each of us to reflect and think critically, exercise empathy in action, and create positive change locally and globally. For more information about The Center, visit our website at

The National Center for Civil and Human Rights believes in justice and dignity for all – and the power of people to make this real. We inspire visitors and our other audiences with immersive exhibitions, dynamic events and conversations, and engagement and education/training programs.


The NEXT Movement – Participants

Featured Artists

Jon Goode (NEXT Alum ’14) – Author, Poet, Storyteller
Jon Goode is an Emmy Nominated and HBO Def Poet and renowned storyteller. Over the past decade, he has performed his unique brand of comedic and life-affirming poetry at colleges and universities, in commercials for major corporations, in interstitials for major cable networks including CNN’s “Black in America” and in venues across the world. A national U.S. Slam Poet Champion, he is currently the host of the storytelling event, the “Moth Atlanta” – and serves as host to the Moth storytelling platform across the globe – from Chicago to London. An accomplished author, his most recent book is titled, “Mydas.”.

Carlos Andres Gomez – Author, Poet

Carlos Andres Gomez is a Colombian American poet, speaker, actor, and author of Hijito, winner of the Broken River Prize, and the memoir “Man Up: Reimagining Modern Manhood.” He has starred inA star of HBO’s Def Poetry Jam, TV One’s Verses and Flow, and Spike Lee’s #1 box office movie Inside Man with Denzel Washington., Carlos’s you may recognize him from his viral poems, “Where are you really from?” and “What Latino Looks Like,” which have garnered millions of views online. He received theWinner of the Atlanta Review International Poetry Prize, Fischer National Poetry Prize, Lucille Clifton Poetry Prize, and the Sandy Crimmins National Prize for Poetry., Carlos partnered with John Legend on a program to counteract bullying and champion inclusive masculinity among high school students. He is ’s a proud Latino and father.

Okorie “OkCello” Johnson – Cellist, Storyteller

Cellist and composer Okorie “OkCello” Johnson has performed and/or recorded with independent and major label artists such as De La Soul, India.Arie, Big Boi, Anthony David, Doria Roberts, Callaghan, and Brenda Nicole Moorer. In 2015 Okorie launched Epi.phony, a multi-city, 12-show concert series, integrating cello, live-sound-looping, improvisation and audience interaction. The series produced the track list for his first album, Liminal, released in 2016 and established him as a pioneer of electronic and experimental string music in the United States. He is a winner of the Alliance Theatre’s 2018 Reiser Atlanta Artists Lab grant and a recipient of the Hambidge Center for the Creative Arts & Sciences fellowship and residency. Recently, Atlanta Magazine named him one of seven individuals helping to, “shape the creative landscape for which our city is known.”

Melissa Mitchell – Visual Artist

Melissa A. Mitchell is a self-taught artist, entrepreneur, author and motivational speaker. Born and raised in Miami, Florida, she has a love for vibrant colors, unique shapes, and bold dark lines that she attributes to her Bahamian heritage, melodic sounds and the colorful world around her. In 2014, she founded Abeille Creations and began her journey in the world of abstract art. Since then, Melissa has gone on to create over 500 original art pieces and, 40 larger than life murals. Her work has been  and featured in Forbes, Vogue, ESSENCE, and The Huffington Post, among others. She is known for turning her lively artwork into textiles worn by luminaries seen on the likes of Lupita Nyong’o, Amara La Negra, Yandy Smith, Rebecca Gross and more. Her unique artistry has made her a highly sought-after artist with major brands for exclusive collaborations.

CC Sunchild – Composer, pianist and vocalist

Colette Coward, also known as CC Sunchild, embodies everything her name suggests. Musically, she captures a whimsical innocence and simplicity, underscored by a compellingly brilliant complexity. Her diverse training and experience in jazz, classical, gospel, pop, and world music are nestled seamlessly within the intricate weavings of her creative expression. She has traveled across all over the world and performed with artists such as Patti LaBelle, Bruce Hornsby, Bobby McFerrin, India.Arie, Dionne Farris, Raphael Saadiq, Caron Wheeler, among others. Most recently, Colette traveled to China as the featured artist-in-residence at Sizhou. Prior to that, she traveled to Bali, Indonesia to study with under the tutelage of Master Nyoman Warsa. Now residing in Atlanta, GA, CC Sunchild was recently featured as the piano-playing hands of Aretha Franklin in the movie “Genius” and tours extensively around the world.

The Art Champions

Charly Palmer
Born in Fayette, Alabama and raised in Wisconsin, Palmer completed studies in Chicago at the American Academy of Art and School of Art Institute. For over 30 years and counting, Charly has been a Fine Artist whose heart’s desire is “to be used as a vessel and expression of something higher” than himself. He’s taught design, illustration, and painting at Spelman College. Palmer resides in Atlanta, GA with his wife, Karida Brown, and their two pugs, Pugsly and Blu.

More about Charly:

Egbert L. J Perry
Egbert Perry is the Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of The Integral Group, a company he co-founded in 1993. Integral is a 300-person, community development and commercial real estate development & investment company with projects and investments in more than 18 U.S. cities from as far west as San Francisco, California to as far east as Baltimore, Maryland. Under Perry, Integral has earned a solid reputation as an innovative developer and investor with public and private partners and investors alike. A longstanding patron of the arts, both Perry and his company have been a generous supporter of Atlanta’s creative class.

More about Egbert: Egbert Perry

Lauren Tate Baeza
Lauren Tate Baeza is the Fred and Rita Richman Curator of African Art at the High Museum. An Atlanta native, she is a curator and Africanist with a background in international aid organizations and museums. Lauren has also led and consulted with environmental and community development initiatives in Kenya and Uganda. In 2018, Atlanta Tribune: The Magazine selected her as a “Women of Excellence.” Baeza holds a Master of Arts in African studies from the University of California, Los Angeles; a Bachelor of Arts in Africana studies with a cultural studies concentration from California State University, Northridge; and a certification in curatorial studies from Sotheby’s Institute of Art.

More about Lauren:

Tracy Murrell
Tracy Murrell is an Atlanta-based visual artist and curator. She has shown in numerous group and juried exhibitions and her work has been featured in art publications including Create! Magazine, ArtVoices Magazine, and New American Paintings. She has been awarded artist’s residencies at The Hambidge Center for the Arts in Rabun Gap, Georgia, Atlanta Printmakers Studio in Atlanta, Georgia, and Green Olive Arts in Tetouan, Morocco. Georgia Tech University recently unveiled two paintings by Murrell commissioned by Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority for the Dorothy M. Crosland Tower library. Murrell’s work is included in various private, corporate and municipal collections.

More about Tracy:

Stephanie Owens
As Executive Director of the National Black Arts Festival, Stephanie Owens spearheads all operations for NBAF including programming, fund development, finances, operations and HR administration. Having successfully navigated the uncertainty of 2020, enabling NBAF to thrive through the COVID-19 pandemic, she has positioned the organization to continue its mission of educating, engaging, exposing and entertaining audiences.

More about Stephanie:

The Production Partners

· Las Palmas Studio (Video Production): 

· Steve West (Photographer):

· Terence Rushin (photographer) – 

· Alexander Poche (Editor/Effects) – IG: @alexanderpoche