Multimedia genocide-awareness program to be held at RIC


“Remembrance, Resilience and Renewal: Genocide Awareness Through the Arts,” a multidisciplinary program of music, art, spoken word and dances from four cultures that have faced genocide, will be presented on April 28 at Rhode Island College.

Judith Lynn Stillman, Rhode Island College’s artist-in-residence, is the artistic director, pianist, and curator of the program, which takes place during Genocide Awareness and Prevention Month.

Stillman has brought together 15 diverse multinational artists for a tour-de-force collaboration “to raise awareness about, and in condemnation of, the atrocity of genocide; to remember and honor those who were lost as a result of the inhumanity of humans to other humans; and to celebrate the resilience and fortitude of survivors, peoples and cultures,” she said.

The month of April was chosen for Genocide Awareness and Prevention Month because it encompasses many significant dates in the history of genocide. These include the beginnings of the genocide against the Tutsi in Rwanda, the Armenian genocide, the Cambodian genocide, and the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising against the Nazi regime/the Holocaust.

The 20th century is often referred to as the “Century of Genocide.” Tragically, this trend has continued into the 21st century. 

The April 28 program includes:

  • The world premiere of an original multidisciplinary work by Judith Lynn Stillman, “We Have No More Tears,” based on a traditional Rwandan folk melody, and featuring African dance specialist and choreographer Shani Collins-Achille, narrator and steel pan virtuoso Becky Bass, vocals by Anush Avetisyan, the Silk Rhode Singers, and Rhode Island College student, alumni and faculty musicians Michael Laurendeau, Bryan Round, Joe Bentley, Michael De Quattro and Stillman.
  • Renowned Cambodian pinpeat musician Song Heng – a survivor of the Cambodian genocide – and his grandchildren, in a performance of traditional Cambodian music.
  • Cambodian-American sculptor Alex Tum, a Rhode Island College student and a rising star in the art world.
  • Celebrated Armenian-American soprano Anush Avetisyan and venerated Armenian violinist Nuné Melik performing iconic Armenian classical and folk music.
  • Armenian painter Mher Khachatryan, who will create a work of art live on stage during the musical performances.
  • Collaborative musical pieces in remembrance of the Holocaust, featuring Rhode Island Philharmonic musicians Ian Greitzer and Willine Thoe.
  • Rwandan poetry written by Haki Madhubuti, founder of the oldest independent Black publishing house.

“Remembrance, Resilience and Renewal: Genocide Awareness Through the Arts,” will be held on Sunday, April 28, at 2:30 p.m., at Rhode Island College’s Nazarian Center for the Performing Arts, 600 Mount Pleasant Ave., Providence. The event is free (donations welcome at the door) but preregistration is required  here.

LEV POPLOW is a communications consultant in Rhode Island. He can be reached at

Genocide awareness, RIC, Judith Lynn Stillman