Featured Artists

We are proud to have spotlighted these local artists during the Our Growth Project Open Mics

 

Ryu Jackson

Dancer, Artist, & Poet

2018: November
Read Ryu's Biography
For as long as Ryu can remember, he has always had a passion for self-expression; whether it is through dance, art or poetry. Coming from a family full of creativity, the possibilities were endless. The love for dance was inspired by his father and was self-taught at a young age. But, his mother insists that he had been dancing since he was in the womb. Art and poetry challenged Ryu in ways that dance couldn’t, and was a way to express deeper emotions in a constructive and creative way that helps him escape reality. School had always been his main outlet for his creativity. Determined not let his creativity die after graduation, Ryu started a clothing company that goes by the name Dragon Slayer Company. He believes that with the power of entrepreneurship it will allow him the opportunity to make a difference in the world. Although the responsibilities of owning a business runs high, it does not compare to the responsibilities of being a father. Ryu wishes to be the best that he can be to provide a world of endless possibilities for his son and his family.

Wilson Kubwayo

Inspirational Speaker

2018: October
Read Wilson's Biography

W.K. Nitunga is a founding member of Our Growth Project and currently sits as a Chair of the Advisory Board of Our Growth Project. Wilson manages his own company, Wilson Inspiration, LLC., as an Inspirational speaker and contracts with organizations as a Social Media & Digital Strategy manager/consultant. As his full time position, Wilson helps to lead a non-profit organization called The Refugee Center Online as it’s Director of Community Engagement. Wilson earned his Masters of Business Administration degree from the University of Sioux Falls and currently lives in Portland, Oregon.

Hannah Asfeldt

Musician & Poet

2018: September
Read Hannah's Biography

Hannah Asfeldt is a peace-loving-flower-child musician and poet born and raised in Sioux Falls, SD. As her practice of creation has developed over the years, themes of life, growth, and wilderness have become interwoven in her work as she spends a great deal of time in the outdoors and studying Ecopsychology. Her professional career in mental health care has helped to direct her music and poetry towards being used as a tool to express her own struggles with mental illness and to inspire and encourage others who may face struggles of their own. Her soft-folk music and adjective-ridden writing will both challenge you and bring you peace.

LaBodega

Break Dancers

2018: August
Read LaBodega's Biography
My name is Kevin LaChane I represent LaBodega out of Sioux Falls, SD; also Gravity Benders from Milwaukee, WI. I’ve been bboying (break dancing) for 11 years. It brought a lot of opportunities throughout my whole life. I travel/teach & even get to do performances. I’m just one of the members of LaBodega, though. LaBodega has been a crew since 2013 but we’ve been dancing with each other for almost 10 years now. We are a group of individuals from a wide diversity of different ethnic backgrounds. We want to inspire & show everyone that you can follow your passion no matter what it is or where you come from.

Adam & Zach Sieff

DJ SieffStyle Entertainment

2018: July
Read Adam & Zach's Biography

Some teams are formed, others happen at birth. As brothers Adam & Zach Sieff are a team that’s blessed to be a blessing. They believe Joy is the foundation of the universe and they use that fruit in everything they do. As entrepreneurs, friends, DJ’s, pizza partiers, videographers, brothers, poets, influencers, musicians, artists, writers and lyricists. They are joy enthusiasts, in a world that craves it. Come be inspired by the art of DJ Sieffstyle Entertainment and hopefully find a piece of your own. We are all canvas’, we are all masterpieces, but Who’s holding the brush? www.djsieffstyle.com

Oballa Oballa

Standup Comic & Motivational Speaker

2018: June
Read Oballa's Biography

Oballa O Oballa was born in Ethiopia and grew up in Kenya. His family moved to the United States in December, 2013, as refugees in search of a better life and opportunities. He is currently a student at Riverland Community College in Austin, MN. Oballa recently got elected as the Vice President of LeadMN an organization that advocate for more than 180,000 students across Minnesota.
He is involved in his community by helping the youth with events that empower them to create a better future. Oballa loves doing standup comedy, dramatic acting and poetry. He loves to bring people together with his sense of humor—giving people the medicine of laughter is the thing he’s most passionate about.
Oballa speaks four languages: Anyuak, local Arabic, English, and Swahili. During his free time he enjoys going on road trips, playing soccer and cooking Anyauk-Ethiopian traditional food

unEVL

Rapper & Producer

2018: May
Read unEVL's Biography

Florida rapper unEVL (pronounced “un-evil”) started teaching himself how to produce and record his own music since he was 14 years old. Now 18, he keeps working non-stop as he continues to spread his name throughout his hometown, Sarasota. The SotaBoy has a knack for making hard songs and rapping fast, but also making story-telling tracks that everybody can relate to. When unEVL comes to perform, you know it’s going to be a show worth seeing.

Margaret Samp

Singer

2018: May
Read Mararet's Biography

Margaret “Maggie” Samp is a Soprano Opera Singer and New Tech High School Student from Sioux Falls, SD.

Xander Morrison

DJ & Producer

2018: May
Read Xander's Biography

Xander Morrison is a Drum Machine DJ and New Tech High School Student.

R. H. Swaney

Writer

2018: April
Read R. H.'s Biography
R. H. Swaney is a writer from Sioux Falls, South Dakota who was raised graciously by his grandparents in rural South Dakota. This is where his heart for humanity began to blossom as he navigated racial differences, small-town living, and a complicated family history. His focus is how his art can affect humanity in a positive, life-giving way. His debut collection of poetry, Lovely Seeds, was self-published In November of 2017 and will be republished revised and expanded on November 1st, 2018 by Central Avenue Publishing.

Anthony Hawkins

Writer & Musician

2018: March
Read Anthony's Biography
Anthony Hawkins is a writer and musician from San Bernardino, California. Grew up playing guitar and writing comic books. He taught himself piano at the age of 17 and began composing film scores. He is working on his debut project, “Sad Planet” a collection of psychedelic jazz music and literature. He plans to release a book and an album later this year.

Bafo Joseph

Hip-Hop Artist

2018: February
Read Bafo's Biography

Authentic. Passionate. and Real. Bafo Joseph also formerly known as (Baf Jay) brings the soul back to hip hop. An immigrant of South Sudan, Africa the newest nation in the world. moving here to the United States with his parents and two siblings, he quickly became inspired by the music, first starting with literature then poetry and then ultimately hip hop music. Baf gets it. It isn’t about anything else but inspiring the world through his music And motivating a generation to be the change they want to see. This is Bafo Joseph.

Travis Nye

Magician

2017: October 2018: January, March, April, May, October
Read Travis's Biography
Travis has been practicing magic for over 15 years with 8 of those years performing professionally. Travis has entertained across the midwest for private parties, corporate events, and has his own theatre show. He has performed live on radio, and TV, and has been the feature of a magazine cover. Travis continues to perform, and progress auditioning for Americas Got Talent, and Penn and Tellers Fool Us. One of Travis’ greatest accomplishments was laying on a bed of nails for 24hrs straight only to end it with a 100lb boulder being crushed on his chest with a sledge hammer. For more information about The Magic of Travis Nye visit www.magicoftravisnye.com facebook.com/magicoftravisnye Instagram: @magicoftravisnye

Nikko McFadden

Hip-Hop Artist & Entrepreneur

2017: November
Read Nikko's biography

Nikko McFadden, 2016’s Regional Artist of the Year at The Omaha Hip-Hop Awards was born Aug. 6th 1989 in Southern California. He is the founder of Real Life Music LLC a registered and trademarked independent record label in Sioux Falls, South Dakota home to the artists Philly Fate, 1DU, Denham, and First Lady Shandi Wells.

Nikko McFadden spent years as a homeless teenager, in and out of Juvenile detention Centers, then turning it into Prison time from the age of 18-21. After his release he has changed his life completely for the better giving back to the same community that he grew up in.

Nikko has traveled the country, spreading music, knowledge, peace, and his story. Starting as a poet, he now performs around the U.S. and also speaks at youth lock up facilities about addictions and overcoming adversities.

He has released an independent EP and a popular DJ out of DC hosted mix-tape and 3 full length LP’s! Real Life Music Vol. 1: Reflections of an Underdog, Real Life Music Vol. 2: Ordinary People and Real Life Music Vol. 3: Chapter 26. All of these albums are available for online purchase and his YouTube has 150,000+ views!He has performed MULTIPLE festivals such as Jazz Fest (headling 2 twice), 605 Summer Classic, Omaha’s New Generation Music Festival, Saturday In The Park, Soul Fest in Rapid City, South Dakota and the Real Life Music Festival in Sioux Falls, South Dakota. He also has multiple performances with National artist such as MGK, Too Short, Kid Ink, Tech N9ne, Slim Thug, Twista, Yelawolf, Rittz, Nelly, Don Trip, Starlito, E-40, Rich Homie Quan, Stevie Stone, Ying Yang Twins, Chingy, 2 Chainz, Caskey and more in an out of South Dakota. He’s known for charismatic stage presence and professionalism. He has had his poetry featured in newspapers and an article in the statewide “605 Magazine”. He has high quality music and videos on YouTube, iTunes, Spotify, Amazon and SoundCloud.

 

While his past is a huge facet for his music, he doesn’t let it weigh him down. He’s been involved with multiple non-profit fundraisers, and also worked hand-in-hand with troubled children since his release and is passionate about seeing a change. His new clothing line released Fall 2016, this is one artist that is constantly reminding you can come from the gutters and make a positive environment for others with similar struggles.

Delphin Starr

Performer, Visual artist & Director

2018: March 2017: October
Read Delphin's biography

Delphin Starr (AKA DelStarr) is a speed painter, born and partially raised in Burundi (East Africa). He adopted this new style of painting performance called speed painting, after 3 years of struggling to express himself because he didn’t speak English. So he taught himself how to speed paint because art is a universal language. Today you can find his artwork all over the world and on his website delstarr.com.

SAP Adams

Hip-Hop Artist 

2017: June
Read SAP's biography

SAP Adams, is a Hip Hop artist from Sioux Falls, SD. To date he has released three major projects and has opened for artists such as Jaytekz, 2Chainz, Lil Bibby, Post Malone and Caskey. SAP has also been jumping around the United States working and collaborating with other artists and producers in other cities such as Los Angeles, Denver and Seattle. He has a combined total of 30,000 plays on SoundCloud that he achieved in just his first year of releasing music. His high energy and quick flow have earned him his reputation in the local music scene.

Niles

Hip-Hop Artist 

2017: April
Read Niles' biography

Chadwick “Niles” Phillips is a renaissance man within the world of the arts. He won the “Who’s Next”/HOT 97 Talent Search in 2006 which enabled him to release a single on Major Label/Koch Records. He also has worked in film for BET, CBS, MTV and NYC Fashion week. He was the host of the legendary “Poet’s Groove” open mic for 2 1/2 years.

He is the founder of the curriculum “Hip-Hop, History and The Arts” that he teaches at schools all around the Twin Cities. He also is the Founder/CEO of The Avant Garde, LLC which is a renaissance music, arts and entertainment production company geared towards providing a platform for highly seasoned artists of all avenues throughout the Twin Cities metropolis.

His company, The Avant Garde, won the arts initiative grant from MRAC (Minnesota Regional Arts Council). He also is a recipient of the 2017 Intermedia Arts Verve Grant. Chadwick recently won a Beautiful Human Award for his dynamic work within the Twin Cities music, arts and entertainment scene.

Zach Mitchell

Local Artist & Musician

2017: March
Read Zach's biography

Zach Mitchell is a local artist/musician out of Sioux Falls, South Dakota.

He has been writing poetry for years that deals with his brokenness but also his faith. Zach has a poetry project called Broken Worship with hopes of publishing a book of poetry.

He is also the frontman in a local band called Rebuild the Fallen. They have played shows in Sioux Falls for about 6 months and continues to grow.

Gabriel Mambo

Local Writer & Artist

2017: February
Read Gabriele's Biography

Gabriel Mambo is a Sioux Falls native who’s never really left town. He attended all levels of school in the city, graduating from Roosevelt High School in 2009. After earning his English degree at USD in 2013, Gabriel returned to Sioux Falls and joined the workforce. He did some soul-searching, became a contractor for Wells Fargo, taught in local schools and even joined Big City Entertainment as a Karaoke DJ/Emcee.

However, Gabriel’s main passion has always been writing. He writes poetry to express his emotions, convey deep thoughts and show the world what happens when a mind thinks outside of the box. At Our Growth Project’s Open Mic, Gabriel hopes to expand himself as a poet by revealing thoughts he believed went through the collective mind of Black America, from the end of slavery through the present, and into the future.

Dempsey Tapley

Spoken Word Poet

2017: January
Read Dempsey's Biography

Dempsey Tapley is a Sioux Falls local artist and performs poetry. He is creating a documentary called “Beware the Locals.”

Soleil Bashale

DJ, Dancer, Rapper, & Singer

2018: April, May, October 2017: April, October, December 2016: December
Read Soleil's biography

As a child, Soleil Bashale was always surrounded by love and music. Both parents had different tastes that complimented each other, providing a buffet for their three children.

Soleil has been practicing the art of dance his entire 20 years of living. His love for music fed this hunger, and lit a spark as a singer, rapper, and poet.

Throughout his public schooling, he took part in show choir to sharpen his performance skills, and enjoyed freestyle rapping with his close friends.

Since his graduation, his relationship with the Heavenly Father and perfecting his writing have been his priorities. Working with students at George McGovern, he wishes to be a prime example of what the coming generations can be.

Check out Soleil’s “Change” performance.

Danielle Brule

Speed Painting Artist

2016: October
Read Danielle's Biography

Danielle Brule is a studio arts major at South Dakota State University. She does speed paintings for events and commissioned work.

Think you have what it takes?

If you are interested in being our featured artists or to participate in a future open mic…send us an inquiry.

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