Play your part #CreatefromtheheART
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Musicians, Singers, Dancers, Choreographers, Actors, Writers, Music Producers, Film Crews
The #createfromtheheart project tells the story of how the heartbeat that provided an artistic life force for one person can become the driving force to inspire artistic creations through music, dance and film.
As a keepsake, AJ Perrelli's mother received a recording of her son’s heartbeat that was taken just hours before his life ended and his legacy as an organ donor began. It is this heartbeat that inspires music, which inspires dance which is captured on film and creates conversation about organ donation.
Be a part of Create from the heART -Listen to AJ's heartbeat and see how it inspires you to create!
Dance, sing, write a poem, a word, draw a picture, make a short video, compose a song, take a picture, post and tag @4theajproject with #createfromtheheart #4AJ
Sign up to be part of one of our productions
Volunteer- Show us your support and lend us your talents, production services, gear, become a crowd-funding liaison or donate funds directly for this project.
- Click here to create an account and tell us how you want to be involved.
- Click here to go to our donate page
What better way is there to honor AJ's memory than engage the passions of the community he loved, and loved him so greatly!
The arts were AJ's life since ages six. His passion lead to a career as professional dancer, singer, stage performer and actor. Even though his life was cut short at age twenty six his heart still beats on to this day literally and through artistic creations like #createfromtheheART. Our Vision is to include all aspects of the arts that AJ Perrelli was involved in:
- Music- AJ sang with The Village People, did studio recording work, played the trumpet, played the drums and had a playlist that went from Broadway shows to Classical.
- Dance- AJ started training in jazz, tap and ballet at age 12.
- Acting- AJ performed in community theater productions, in web-series, commercials and films.
- Live Performance- AJ's work in live productions started at 16. It included stilt walking, silk work, theater and dance productions.
Because of her husband Anthony, Christine Perrelli did not have to wait to meet her son's heart recipient to hear his heartbeat.
It all started when their 26 year old son AJ suffered a head injury on October 10th, 2013. 9 days later he was giving the gift of life as an organ donor. His gifts included his heart, kidneys, liver, pancreas and corneas. He saved 5 peoples lives that day and gave vision to two.
AJ Perrelli our namesake and the inspiration picture for our logo
The day came when they needed to say their goodbyes. Without telling anyone, AJ's father arranged with the resident doctor to record AJ's heartbeat. Using the instrument doctors use for a sonogram and and his cellphone and several tries they finally captured AJ's heartbeat. The evening of AJ's funeral, Anthony gave that and a locket of hair to Christine to remember their oldest son.
Now, each night before she goes to bed, AJ's mother listens to her sons heartbeat and says I love you AJ, I love you AJ to the rhythm of his heart. Having this keepsake helps her to keep her promise made at his hospital bedside to say his name everyday and encourages her to move forward with the non profit set up in his honor.
Because of AJ and his dad, other parents and family members now have recordings of their loved ones heartbeats before organ donation. Yessie Escano, Family Service Coordinator for Organ Donation, from Live On NY was at AJ's bedside and walked him to his surgery on behalf of the family. She, like so many others worldwide, felt a unexplained connection to AJ and speaks of him often. Because of AJ's recorded heartbeat, she now asks the families of organ donors if they would like to have a recording of their loved ones heart for a keepsake. About a year after AJ's passing, Christine met a father of a small child that passed away and was an organ donor. It was only then that she learned that, because of AJ, he too and many others, have recording of their loved one's heartbeats.
"Having AJ's heartbeat and knowing it is my son's actual heart beating takes away the longing to meet the organ recipients" says Christine. My cousin is a heart recipient and for him it is really difficult to think of the loss the other family had to go through so he could live. Meeting the family is not even something he can consider right now and it has already been 2 years. I have not heard from AJ's donors and I understand why. Having AJ's heartbeat soothes me. It is not for everyone and I get that but for me it helps."
It is our hope that through telling AJ's story and the #createfromtheheart initiative we will give voice to the cause of organ and tissue donation registration and create a small way that will help families in the grieving process. With organ donation, 1 person can save several lives and change the quality of life for that person and their families."
By engaging the arts community to create from the heart and sharing their mission, The AJ Project hopes to encourage organ donor networks worldwide to give the option to donor families and record the heartbeats as a gift to donor families.
The AJ Project is an arts organization set up to honor AJ Perrelli and continue the ripple effect of his love for the arts. Through The AJ Project's mission of curating, cultivating and creating emerging artist it is their vision to create a voice for social causes such as this through the gifts and talents of the arts community.
Watch Dave Coleman, actor, writer and director as he describes what creative vision the heartbeat inspires. How does it inspire you to create? click here
For the creative artist or supporter of the arts, The AJ Project offers both paid and volunteer opportunities depending on the project and location. For non profits, foundations and social causes we connect you to our worldwide creative teams, creating content for the web, live events, music, film and video production services. The AJ Project is a 501(c)3 non profit organization. 4theajproject.org
Organ and Tissue donation saves lives. Even if you are already registered visit Organize.org to join the first National Network.