Rethinking Prison: Music and Life Beyond Punishment – TEDxQueensU

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In his talk, Hugh Christopher Brown explains how the instigation of a music program with inmates taught him the importance of mentorship in prison; and how its effects on convicts deepened his understanding of what music is.

Hugh Christopher Brown divides his life between Wolfe Island and New York City. He was born and raised in Toronto where he grew up studying music at The Royal Conservatory and St. Michael’s Choir School. His early professional years were spent on the road with The Bourbon Tabernacle Choir, along with music partner Kate Fenner, with whom he continues to perform and record in New York.

Chris has always applied music to matters of social justice. His time in the Kingston area has brought this focus most recently to prisons. Following the destruction of the highly functional prison farms program, he decided to get inside and offer what skills he had to the prison environment. The result has been ‘Postcards From The County’; an album recorded completely behind bars, released anonymously to raise funds and awareness for local charities and victims’ support.

This talk was given at a TEDx event using the TED conference format but independently organized by a local community. Learn more at

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