Alixa Garcia & Naima Penniman

Climbing PoeTree is the combined force of Alixa Garcia and Naima Penniman. Over the last 10 years, Climbing PoeTree has been at the forefront of the social and environmental justice movement by sharpening their art as a tool for popular education, community organizing, and personal transformation. Their award-winning performance is composed of dual-voice spoken word poetry, hip hop, and multi-media theatre that dissolves apathy with hope, exposes injustice, and helps heal our inner trauma so that we may begin to cope with the issues facing our communities.

Over the last decade, Climbing PoeTree has independently organized 25 national and international tours bringing their performance to thousands of people across the U.S. and abroad from Mexico to the UK, South Africa to Cuba, alongside visionary leaders and artists such as Cornel West, Angela Davis, Alicia Keys, Alice Walker, Erykah Badu, Saul Williams, Amiri Baraka, Danny Glover, and The Last Poets. They have traveled over 11,000 miles across the US on a bus converted to run on recycled vegetable oil, merging theater and activism by creating a national network that gave voice to local organizations addressing and healing the effects of unnatural disasters in their communities. Climbing PoeTree’s artistic and organizing work can be found on the walls of museums and in the streets of Haiti through Ayiti Resurrect, co founded by Naima. Innovative educators, Climbing PoeTree has lead hundreds of workshops in institutions from Harvard University to Rikers Island Prison. They are currently developing a multimedia curriculum based on their latest production, Hurricane Season, that employs art and culture to help learners analyze systems of oppression and resistance, and build new leadership essential for fundamental social change.