Hip-Hop Artist Residency

A fully-funded three-week residency focusing on creative songwriting, performance techniques, and beat production.

  1. After working alongside professional teaching artists special guests from the arts community, participants in the 2016 Hip-Hop Artist Residency recorded an EP of their original work at Purple Door Studios.

  2. Through the Hip-Hop Artist Residency, participating teens gain the valuable tools necessary to express their artistic vision with confidence both in the recording studio and live on stage.

  3. Vocalist Monica Elenes and Jayla Nickens perform during the Hip-Hop Artist Residency final showcase.

  4. Milwaukee-based teaching artist Tyrone Miller works with residency participants to teach the mechanics of of DJing.



The Museum of Pop Culture is proud to partner with Arts Corps and Grammy Award-winning duo Macklemore & Ryan Lewis to offer a three-week intensive Hip-Hop Artist Residency focusing on creative songwriting, performance techniques, and beat production.

The Hip-Hop Artist Residency seeks aspiring teen hip-hop artists who want to get paid to learn from and work alongside professional teaching artists and a virtual who’s who from Seattle’s vast hip-hop and creative arts community. 

All participants will record an EP of original music at a professional studio, and put on a final performance inside of MoPOP’s Sky Church.


July 25–August 12, 2016; 10:00am–4:00pm; MoPOP and the Vera Project.


Youth ages 13-19 with an established desire to pursue hip-hop and music as a career must apply online and meet all criteria in order to be considered.


  • Fully-funded three-week instruction
  • $500 stipend upon completion of the program
  • Complimentary bus tokens
  • Daily lunch provided

This Hip-Hop Artist Residency is designed exclusively for rising teen artists from the greater Seattle area who meet the King County low-income verification. Aiming to directly address the access barriers many underserved youth and families face when asked to choose between paying for an experiential learning opportunity beyond their means and getting a summer job this residency is an opportunity to provide up to 40 teen artists with a high-quality arts experience that supports them pursuing their artistic development and be compensated for their talent. 



Maddy “MADlines” Clifford is a rapper, writer, and educator from Seattle. She's taught hundreds of literary arts workshops throughout the Bay Area, where she currently resides. Maddy also holds an MFA from Mills College, and has independently released three musical projects and performed widely, including opening for Souls of Mischief. In 2015, she served as a Hip-Hop Ambassador to Uganda through the Next Level Program, a project of the US Department of State. She's also spent the last three years facilitating poetry workshops with incarcerated youth in San Francisco. Her range—from stage, to panel, to urban classroom, to academic setting—is extensive. Maddy's ultimate goal is to leave an indelible footprint in a shifting cultural landscape, one in which young people’s dreams for peace can take root!


Olisa “Spyc-E” Enrico has been rockin’ the mic for over 20 years. Born into a life of music, Olisa began exploring theatre in 2003. She has a BFA in performance and an MFA in Theater Pedagogy. Olisa believes that artists and art are vital to the state of culture and society and hopes to share her soul through performance and teaching. Olisa is a board member of TheConciliationProject.org (TCP) (501c3) whose mission is "...to promote through active and challenging dramatic works, open and honest dialogue about racism in America in order to repair its damaging legacy.” Olisa teaches students of all ages and stages. Her teaching, of any subject, incorporates principles of community and shared responsibility.


Jamal Farr a.k.a. Jace is a Seattle hip-hop fixture. He’s been involved with the Seattle hip-hop scene since the mid-1980s and has done work with such organizations as National Black United Front, Impact Management/K Records, and Loose Groove/Sony, as well as rapped on many independent releases.

As a hip-hop performer, Jace participates in the broader arts scene, beyond just the hip-hop scene, and uses his time to help young people in his creative writing classes to navigate their lives with words. Jace is currently a member of the hip-hop/soul-inspired group Black Stax. He prides himself of the work they do with other artists internationally as well as within the Seattle community.


Erica Merritt began singing and performing at the age of five. In middle school she was featured in a band called Starlighters, which consisted of three student vocalists and a few members of the faculty. At 14, she joined theatre and music performance groups at Langston Hughes Cultural Arts Center. She studied voice and music in college, and began teaching choir through Northwest Folklife in 1998. Over the course of the last 15 years she has taught voice, songwriting, and choir through various art organizations. Merritt has also worked in the field of social and human services for over 18 years, and has enjoyed the amazing opportunity to combine her passions of social well-being and music through the art of teaching.


Winner of Vocalo Radio’s “Quest for The Best DJ” battle, Tyrone "DJ Bizzon" Miller's creative turntablism skills, original production, and hands-on style has made him one of the Midwest’s most sought-after DJs. Based in Milwaukee, Tyrone has opened for or performed with artists including Kendrick Lamar, Baauer, Mac Miller, ?uestlove, Just Blaze, Naughty By Nature, People Under The Stairs, and DJ Abilities. Tyrone prides himself on rocking the party without compromising artistic music selection. The same work ethic and originality that make him a standout on the turntables carry through to his other roles in music–radio host, music columnist, event organizer, and youth work professional. In addition to DJing, Tyrone co-hosts Those Hip Hop Guys Radio on WMSE 91.7FM, Milwaukee’s only all underground and old school hip-hop radio show. He’s a member of Vocalo Radio’s DJ collective, which broadcasts on Chicago’s 91.1FM and Indiana’s 89.5FM. He created and writes for JSOnline’s Those Hip Hop Guys Blog, the only column in a major Wisconsin publication focused on hip-hop culture. He is also a youth work professional with experience teaching music classes, directing youth programming, creating curriculum, leading workshops, writing grants, and organizing fundraising events and concerts. All of these projects are inspired by his mission to put musical diversity and real choice back into people’s hands, rather than letting mainstream media dictate what defines good music.


Born and raised in the Central District, Otieno Terry is a singer-songwriter and producer sure to take you on a journey with his eclectic and passionate style. With roots in soul, hip-hop, and jazz, Terry blends a vast array of genres for a truly unique sound through which he delivers powerful messages. As a former participant in Seattle Theatre Group's More Music @ The Moore program, and winner of MoPOP's Sound Off! competition in 2014, Otieno continues to gain recognition for his collaborations with Seattle-based artists, in addition to his own music. Furthermore, he is a teaching artist and mentor with Creative Justice Program.

Program partners:


 Thank you to our sponsors:

Carroll Family Fund, Hon and Marla King, M&RL Equity Fund

Thank you to our community partners:


2312 Gallery, Purple Door Studios, Zeek's Pizza