Khadijah Z. Ali-Coleman, Ed.D
Khadijah Z. Ali-Coleman, Ed.D. is a mother, cultural curator, community organizer, nationally recognized speaker, and writer born in Washington DC and raised in Maryland. She is the 2023-2026 Poet Laureate of Prince George's County, MD. A playwright, she has had more than a dozen of her plays presented publicly in venues throughout the country, including the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, Theater Alliance, and Baltimore Theater Project. She was a Theater Alliance Quadrant Playwright from 2019-2021, and a 2019 Fulbright-Hays scholar during her doctoral studies at Morgan State University.
A spoken word artist and singer, she performs under the stage name Khadijah Moon. She released her CD, Song of a Space Cadet (2016) after being awarded a 2015 Maryland State Arts Council Independent Artist award for non-Classical Solo Vocal Performance. She has performed on dozens of stages as a vocalist and spoken word artist and served as a poetry host from 2015-2018 at the flagship Busboys & Poets location in Washington, DC.
A multi-genre writer, she is author of the poetry chapbook, The Summoning of Black Joy (2023) and the children’s book Mariah’s Maracas (2018) and co-editor of the academic text, Homeschooling Black Children in the US: Theory, Practice and Popular Culture (2022). Her work is featured in the anthology The Fire Inside: Collected Stories and Poems from Zora’s Den (ZD, 2020), the book Afro-Futurism in Black Panther: Gender, Identity and the Remaking of Blackness (Rowan & Littlefield, 2021) and in three volumes of the Liberated Muse book anthology series that she edited from 2009-2015. A freelance journalist and essayist since 1999, her bylines have appeared in The Baltimore Times, The Washington Informer, East of the River, Ebony.com, SoulBounce.com, SoulTrain.com, The Grade, The Body Is Not An Apology, Medium and more.
Dr. Ali-Coleman served as the 2020 Scholar-in-Residence at Prince George’s County African American Museum and Cultural Center (PGAAMCC) where she also served as a teaching artist. She curated and presented her family history and that of four other families through the exhibit Flying Towards Freedom during her time at PGAAMCC. As an educator, she has created and led educational programs for over 20 years at numerous organizations, taught communication studies and fine and performing arts at colleges and universities and is currently serving as the executive director of Hurston Wright Foundation. She is founding director of the multidisciplinary arts group Liberated Muse and co-founder of the education research group Black Family Homeschool Educators and Scholars (BFHES).
Dr. Ali-Coleman holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Interdisciplinary Studies (African American Studies and Mass Media) and a minor in Writing from the University of Maryland Baltimore, County; a Master of Arts degree in Mass Communication from Towson University and a doctorate in education from Morgan State University. She earned a certificate in Diversity, Equity and Inclusion in the Workplace in 2021 from the University of Florida. She has been featured on television shows and radio programs speaking about arts and education or performing on PBS, NBC, Fox5, WPFW 89.3 FM, WEAA 88.9 FM, WHUR 96.3 FM, and more. Visit her website here.
Colie Aziza’s musical style uniquely blends sounds of sultry jazz and soul with therapeutic elements of spoken word that speak to the mental, emotional, and spiritual well-being of her listeners. This independent singer/songwriter’s performance intentionally sets out to create intimate landscapes, where she connects and shares her vision with the audience.
Colie believes in the power of collaboration. She currently creates and shares the stage with Liberated Muse Arts Group, Deep Water Jazz, The Charles Rahmat Group, as well as her ensemble Soul For A New Day. She has worked as a part of Liberated Muse Arts Group since 2011 and has appeared in more than a dozen productions with Liberated Muse, including leading roles in the Liberated Muse-produced stage plays, When We Were Goddesses, Running: AMOK, Miss Trudy's Birthday, Madame Breezy's Speakeasy and In Her Words. Colie actively performs across the country as a solo singing artist.
Colie published her first children’s book, Corey’s Dreams in 2016 using her pen name Aziza M. Throughout her life’s work, she encourages both adults and young people to always follow their dreams. Born and raised in the Bronx, New York, Colie attended Music & Arts High School in Harlem, where she majored in vocal studies, and she continued her studies at Syracuse University, where she studied musical theatre. Visit her website.
Lyn Artope is a long-time member of Liberated Muse Arts Group originally from Brooklyn, New York, but currently residing in Glen Burnie, Maryland with her husband and sons. She began her career in 2010 in Liberated Muse’s Capital Fringe Fest production of the play Running: AMOK. DCist described her portrayal in Running: AMOK as a “pleasant surprise” with “comedic banter”.
Since Running: AMOK, Lyn has emceed events as part of Liberated Muse Arts Group and toured for two years from 2013-2014 with the company's production of In Her Words. In that production, she portrayed Zora Neale Hurston during the first year she was part of the cast and the third season as poet Lucille Clifton. She starred as the title character in the Liberated Muse musical cabaret show “Madame Breezy’s Speakeasy” which debuted in 2015 and was a lead character in the Liberated Muse stage play written by Khadijah Ali-Coleman, When We Were Goddesses which opened during ArtScape in Baltimore in 2017.
Lyn is a published poet and spoken word artist and her poem Awakening is the title cut of Liberated Muse's 2018 album.
Singer/Songwriter Angela Ballard, known onstage as the artist Anonamas Grooves, made her acting debut in 2010 in the Liberated Muse musical Running: AMOK as the character “LYN” which premiered in the 5th annual Capital Fringe Fest. A longtime singer and songwriter who experiments with hip-hop rhythms and eclectic beats, she has performed across the country and abroad as a vocalist and is part of the music group The Bangladesh Project. She is owner of Samanona Music Publishing and hosted the monthly Liberated Muse Arts Group performance and open mic series #theSPILL for a year before it closed. She has also written songs for the Liberated Muse album Awakening and the play When We Were Goddesses where she portrayed the goddess Ma'at. She is a health and wellness practitioner and licensed massage therapist who runs her own practice on the Eastern Shore area of Maryland. Visit her website HERE.