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Russell Simmons Presents Brave New Voices

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Russell Simmons on a mission to help kids explore the arts »

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Russell Simmons has always been a staunch advocate for the arts. Now, his latest HBO effort, "Russell Simmons Presents Brave New Voices,"  picks up where "Def Poetry Jam" left off. An enriching docuseries that chronicles the journey of a culturally diverse group of young, gifted and outspoken teenage poets on their way to claim victory in the 2008 Brave New Voices National Poetry Slam Finals in Washington, D.C. Rapper, actress and songstress "Queen Latifah" Owens narrates the six-week series.

"You will not see these American teenagers represented anywhere else on television.," coexecutive producer Stan Lathan, coexecutive producer. "You will laugh, you will cry, and most of all, you will be inspired. I can say with sincerity that this is the most important show I've ever produced."

Last July, while the nation was preparing to elect its first Black president more than 500 poets from New York, Philadelpia, Honolulu, Ann Arbor, Sante Fe and San Francisco spent four consecutive days presenting their words and ideas to win the utlimate title of 2008 National Youth Slam Poetry Champion.

"We all have a well of creativity inside of us," Russell Simmons, coexecutive producer and cofounder of The Rush Philanthropic Arts Foundation. told ESSENCE.com. "This show will help unlock your inner poet."

Check out the the premiere this Sunday, April 5 at 11 PM.ET on HBO.

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