Feature Film Program

Let the Little Light Shine

PLEASE NOTE: Online RSVPs are now closed, but walk-ups are encouraged! Box office check-in begins at 7:15 PM.

New York Premiere! A high-achieving elementary school in Chicago’s expanding neighborhood is a lifeline for Black children, until gentrification threatens its closure.

Sat Jun 25 8:00 PM

The Films

Let the Little Light Shine

Kevin Shaw | US | 86

Let the Little Light Shine is about a high-performing, top-ranked African American elementary school in Chicago, The National Teachers Academy (NTA), which is threatened to be closed and transformed into a high school favoring the needs of the community’s wealthier residents. Parents, students, and educators mobilize to fight for the elementary school’s survival.

The story follows everyday parents-turned-organizers, alongside NTA students and staff, as they advocate to keep their elementary school which is a safe haven for children and a community bedrock in Chicago’s fastest growing neighborhood, The South Loop.

The film also posits the point-of-view of residents in favor of changing NTA into a high school that is sorely needed for its neighborhood. The theme of gentrification is rarely viewed through this lens of education, where “well-intentions” can be critically viewed as privileged desires, creating a disconnect dividing and reshaping communities across the country.

Under-resourced schools across the United States have been closed due to underperformance, but Let the Little Light Shine tells a unique story of a high-performing school with a 100% graduation rate potentially being shuttered for the benefit of a higher social strata.

El Carrito

Zahida Pirani | US | 15

Nelly lives alone with her elderly father. The only way she makes ends meet is by working as a street vendor from dawn to dusk. She has learned not to trust anyone until one day she is forced to take a leap of faith or be resigned to her position forever.



Brooklyn EMCEE ScienZe always knew he wanted to be a rapper. From the age of 9 years old, he used to sit on the stairs inside his mother's house and listen to his brother and his friend's cut and scratch records in the basement. While sitting there, he’d get this feeling he can't really explain til this day. He used to just sit there and come up with raps in my head. It was then he experienced what having a passion means. Not long after his brother introduced him to a Casio Keyboard and a microphone and here we are today.

Years back, ScienZe decided to continue this pursuit as a solo artist and this decision sparked a blossoming career. He released 5 mixtapes in 2010 that he recorded, mixed, and mastered, and was able to obtain a beautiful grass roots following. Later that year he released the critically acclaimed mixtape Hall Pass, which garnered attention from popular online music blogs like 2dopeboyz, OkayPlayer, DJBooth.net, The Source, Complex, and Pigeons and Planes to name a few. ScienZe has also been featured in XXLʼs “The Break,” with his 2nd LP Ella. Soon after he embarked on his first European Tour, spanning across 5 different countries. In 2016 he toured nationally with his LP Good Food, bringing the music to 15 cities in the US.

Outside of music, ScienZe believes that education is very important, and continues to work with Lincoln Center’s educational program performing in schools all around New York City with a building session after each performance for students to get a chance to talk to an artist about music and life.

Event Details

8:00 PM
Doors Open
8:30 PM
Live Music from ScienZe
9:00 PM
Films Begin
10:30 PM
Q&A with filmmaker Kevin Shaw


How will it work?

Using your RSVP, our team will check in all patrons by last name at will call. Before your arrival, we will ask you to make sure you can answer “no” to all of the CDC’s COVID-19 safety screening questions, as well as conducting a temperature check. Masks will be required while interacting with event staff. Chairs will be provided.

Can I bring food and drinks?

No alcoholic beverages are allowed. Feel free to bring snacks and non-alcoholic beverages! Food and drink must be consumed while you are sitting in your designated area.

Do I need to wear a mask?

Masks are encouraged while interacting with staff outdoors.

What COVID-19 Measures Have Been Taken?

In addition to vaccination requirements, COVID-19 safety measures include: options for socially distanced seating, and masks encouraged. All attendees and staff are required to wear a mask while interacting. You will also be reminded of the mandatory safety measures via email and on-screen.

COVID-19 safety measures and requirements may be updated or changed based on current guidance at the time of the event.

Where will the screening take place within The Brooklyn Army Terminal?

Check in will be through the entrance at 80 58th Street, but the screening location will be down at the end of the pier. Please contact us if someone in your party will need assistance getting to the location.

How accessible is this venue?

This venue will be entirely one level, with the exception of a ramp at the entrance, making it very accessible. The venue is approximately a 15 minute walk from the nearest subway station. If this brings up any concerns, please email us at tickets@rooftopfilms.com or call at 718-417-7362 for more information.

Are there ID requirements or an age limit to enter the event?

Rooftop Films are open to all ages.

What are my transport/parking options getting to the event?

For a full list of Rooftop Films venues and directions, click here.

Do I have to bring my printed ticket to the event?

It is not necessary to print your ticket. Our team will check the name on your RSVP at will call.


Brooklyn Army Terminal

80 58th St, Brooklyn, NY 11220

venue on Google Map

The show presented in partnership with