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  • The Narrative Project

As We EMERGE Documentary Screening


May 10, 2024 


Aaron Johnson 



As We EMERGE: Monologues of the Formerly Incarcerated Documentary Shines Bright at Westville Art Walk Screening


NEW HAVEN, Conn. [May 10, 2024] - EMERGE Connecticut hosted a documentary screening of "As We Emerge: Monologues of the Formerly Incarcerated" to a packed Lotta Studios on Thursday night during the Westville Art Walk. The documentary, filmed and directed by New Haven filmmaker Travis Carbonella, showcased footage and interviews with several EMERGE Connecticut Crew Members who participated in the live theatrical performance of "As We Emerge: Monologues of the Formerly Incarcerated" in November 2023. 

“You never forget your story,” said EMERGE Supervisor and Peer Mentor Tabari “Ra” Hashim. “It’s good to talk things out. I still had a lot of trauma so to go back and talk about certain things, I felt like I was smacked in the face. But I know hearing our story could help someone.”

Hashim was one of five EMERGE members who participated in both the theatrical performance and the documentary along with Babatunde Akinjobi, Jimmy Robinson, Abdullah Shabazz, and Vance Solman.

Through candid storytelling, the film delved into the intense emotions, unwavering commitment, and significant hurdles faced by the five individuals who shared their experiences.

“My north star was I just wanted to do right by these guys,” said Carbonella. “You just fall in love with these guys. So working on this, you just fall in love with them and you want to do right by them.”

The screening marked the first in a series of showings planned throughout the remainder of the year across local communities in Connecticut. EMERGE Connecticut and Lotta Studios expressed gratitude to all attendees for their enthusiastic support and participation in this important event.

L to R) Babatunde Akinjobi, EMERGE Connecticut Board Chair Dr. Don C. Sawyer III, Abdullah Shabazz, Vance Solman, and Tabari “Ra” Hashim speak to the audience following the showing of the As We EMERGE: Monologues of the Formerly Incarcerated at Lotta Studios in New Haven.  



EMERGE Connecticut assists individuals with previous incarceration experiences by providing training in valuable skills, offering targeted mental health support, and presenting access to job opportunities. EMERGE’s approach involves transitional employment, connecting participants with comprehensive services to disrupt the cycle of recidivism, foster community building, and instill hope in those reintegrating into society. We not only train individuals in marketable skills for competitive wages, but also utilize transitional employment as a means to break the cycle of recidivism, foster community connections, and inspire hope.

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