What we do


Annual Theatrical Production

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Inspiring and educating youth through the arts.


Most of the young people we connect with in the classroom are also given the opportunity to attend our annual spring theatrical production. These powerful, educational productions raise young people’s collective consciousness, honor their voices and inspire them to avoid risky behaviors. While the play topics change from year to year, the root of the performances always lies in highlighting social justice and teen health-related issues. Written and performed by youth, the goal is that each young person in the audience will see themselves on stage and identify with the positive messages and help-seeking behaviors showcased in the production.

We reach approximately 2,000 young people and hundreds of adults each year through these performances. For our Peer Educators who develop the educational theatrical production, these performances afford extraordinary opportunities to write, perform, work in stage production and market the performance.

Exposure to industry professionals (set designers/builders, architects, professional actors, art directors, script writers, freelance photographers, videographers, radio announcers, and vocal coaches) is especially impactful for participating youths. Many Peer Educators become inspired to pursue careers in the arts; while many others indicate that the production gave them the confidence to speak in front of others and to regard themselves as leaders.

This was a phenomenal production with a critical assessment of our youths’ perspectives on love, peer pressure, community, and their safety. The peer educators left the audience with a charge to the adults to step up to the plate as community members/leaders to set better examples, to show more love and to lead with grace! I was moved to tears from this production and will be supporting Teen HYPE from here on out.
…I am a member of the Youth Advisory Council at the Detroit Historical Society…the show was AMAZING…The cast and the content of the show completely exceeding my expectations. I can’t wait to see it next year!
— Teresa Nunez-Desmond
Hidden In The Shadows tells the difficult secrets through the arts. I saw my parallels of my own life as these young people portrayed childhood trauma. It brings me great joy to watch Detroit’s youth actively advocate for change and safe spaces.
— Rev. Sherisse M. Butler
That was the best field trip everrrr😕❤❤❤
— @thatsnana2x

Check Out Photos From Past Productions!

I just want to extend my love and true appreciation for Teen HYPE. You shine light on dark realities, and expose raw talent to those that, if not you, people wouldn’t know exist.
— Jamal
This was the most powerful play I have ever seen and I am 73!
— Yvonne
I appreciate the opportunity to express not only my opinion, but my personal experience. Growing up as a kid, my father was sporadically confined into doing jail time and prison. As a teen, I was convicted and am currently incarcerated. I won’t allow it to stop me from correcting my mistakes, and lending a hand or two for those who have also been Mis-Taken. This is something I plan to do more of, and upon my release, be more hands-on with. Thank you Teen HYPE!
— Kereim
What powerful writing and performances by these young leaders! This advocacy will stay with these youth and all who experience Mis-Taken? for a lifetime.
— Deb, Race Relations and Diversity Taskforce of Birmingham, Michigan



Hidden In The Shadows
Collective fears and the search for safe spaces


Effects of having incarcerated family/mass incarceration


12th Street
Race relations through lens of 1967 Uprising


Sex Trafficking


Mixed Up
Impact of Bullying/Finding Your Voice


Sexual Abuse/Dangers of Secrets


Inspired by Lauryn Hill’s Album


Hope from the Ashes
Violence/Healing the Community


My First Time
Complexities of First-time Experiences


Love Notes
Friends/Struggles of Coming Out




The Wall
Isolation & Suicide


Real Talk
Sexuality & STI Risks


Parent-Child Relationships


Teen Love, That’s What’s Hot
Healthy Relationships


Hip Hop Fun Park
Impacts of Peer Pressure