The House of Malico's Alignment Festival Centers Creative Healing

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Alignment Festival organizers Emily McLean, Charmaine Davis aka Queens D.Light, Sasha Kelley and Shah Noor (left to right). (Momo Dash)

Oakland creative collective the House of Malico—helmed by rapper and filmmaker Queens D.Light (a.k.a. Charmaine Davis) and photographer Sasha Kelley—puts on events that don't fit neatly into one category. Once you arrive, feel the sense of community and witness the joyous creative expressions of artists, wellness practitioners and activists, it all makes sense.

That goes for the House of Malico's Alignment Festival, a celebration of Women's Month kicking off on March 1. The event features 30 days of programming, including an art exhibit at Qulture Collective, a potluck at Betti Ono Gallery, a creativity-as-healing workshop led by singer Emily McLean and a writing workshop for writers of color with Shah Noor Hussein and Fatima Nasyr. 

The centerpiece of the Alignment Festival, which centers women and LGBTQ+ people of color, is Twerk 4 Mother Earth on March 16, an annual House of Malico dance party that invites event-goers to let loose and shake it off in a safe space. The goal, Queens D.Light and Sasha Kelley told me ahead of the first T4ME in 2016, is to promote a consent-based culture of healing through music and dance. 

"This concept of dance reaffirming your life and being a form of replenishment is something that's not new," Queens D. Light said at the time. "It's something that's deeply rooted into African culture."

Details on the House of Malico's Alignment Festival can be found here