“It is our duty to fight for our freedom.
It is our duty to win.
We must love each other and support each other.
We have nothing to lose but our chains.”
― Assata Shakur
Mederi Muzik is a partnership between DeMarisa Steeley, a healer, community organizer, and activist, and Dorian Wallace, a music therapist, composer, and activist. Based in New York City, we met at Rikers Island Correctional Facility, where we became acutely aware of the difficulties of connecting with underserved communities, especially youth, and how the system did not meet their needs. We identified a need to offer culturally relevant programming for the people we served, applying music as a technology to communicate with their deeper unconscious and mend unresolved trauma repressed within the psyche. Our programs treat transgenerational trauma and mental health issues, build coping skills and establish a sense of equilibrium in their daily lives. We offer non-invasive alternative therapeutic approaches to address more severe challenges in the individual and collective psyches and the community, applying evidence-based practices via a sociocultural context. We serve all underrepresented groups, including incarcerated people, targeted neighborhoods, vulnerable communities, and the socially and economically disadvantaged.
DeMarisa Steeley is a healer, activist, mentor, and community organizer who primarily serves communities of color.
Dorian Wallace is a composer and music therapist focusing on violence-affected communities via liberation music therapy.