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Hite Digital Norman

(35 reviews)

513 SW 156th St
Oklahoma City, Oklahoma 73170
(405) 701-9245


In the heart of Norman, Oklahoma, a “Unik” (pronounced unique) venue has emerged, transcending the boundaries of a mere event space to become a sanctuary for the soul of the local art community. Rashad Johnson, the visionary behind Up Together Venue, brings with him a passion for the arts and community engagement that has shaped the venue’s identity. This passion has blossomed into a foundational philosophy, Unik Peaces, which is the name of his LLC, aims to cultivate a rich tapestry of artistic expression and collaboration within Norman.

Rashad’s journey, spanning from the vibrant streets of Dallas to the quieter landscapes of North Dakota, has been driven by a desire to create a space that embraces all forms of artistic expression. 

“Everybody has their peace of mind, their way of living that brings them peace and comfort. And we want to help that, you know, we want to make sure everybody is able to do that”

Rashad explains, encapsulating the essence of his vision & purpose.

Up Together Venue, under Rashad’s stewardship and through collaboration with Katie Graham, another local artist and visionary, has become a catalyst for Norman’s artistic community. The venue’s versatility allows it to host a wide range of events, from open mic nights for music, poetry & prose to dancing exhibitions and even wrestling matches. Of course, community members can secure the space for their birthday parties, baby showers & other party-like gatherings; however, its core mission remains nurturing local artists. Initiatives like the Artist’s Closet demonstrate their commitment to providing artists with genuine support, helping to integrate their art into the community’s fabric.

The Artist’s Closet is an initiative within Up Together Venue that provides support and resources to local artists in Norman, Oklahoma. Started by Katie Graham in October 2022, the Artist’s Closet began as a pop-up event where Katie would collect & give out art supplies to artists while selling her own artwork at vendor events. Any experienced artist knows that the collection of excess supplies can grow big, fast; there are new & struggling artists that can put those items to great use.

Inspired by a similar project in California, Katie wanted to create a space where artists could come together, share supplies, and support one another. The Artist’s Closet has since found a permanent home within Up Together Venue, thanks to the collaboration between Katie and Rashad Johnson.

The Artist’s Closet not only provides a physical space for artists to gather and create but also offers a sustainable approach to art-making by encouraging the sharing and reuse of supplies. Artists can donate their unused materials, which are then made available to others who might need them.

As the Norman Music Festival approaches, Up Together Venue is poised to play a pivotal role. The venue’s plans for the festival reflect Rashad’s dedication to the art community—a celebration of local talent through open mic events, headliner performances, and vendor support, all aimed at showcasing Norman’s artistic brilliance.

During the Norman Music Festival, which takes place on April 26th and 27th, Rashad and Katie have planned a series of events at Up Together Venue to celebrate and showcase local talent.

Friday, April 26th: They will host a large open mic event with free entry for anyone who wishes to participate or attend. The open mic will be a competition, where the winner will be determined by popular vote. The artist with the most votes will earn a spot as a headliner performer at the venue on Saturday.

Saturday, April 27th: The event will feature a lineup of headliner performers, including the winner from Friday’s open mic. These artists have been selected by Rashad and Katie as talented individuals who deserve an opportunity to share their art with the community. In addition to the performances, various vendors will be present, showcasing and selling their creations.

Throughout Saturday’s event, attendees will have the chance to vote for their favorite performer. The artist with the most votes will be awarded a grand prize, adding an extra layer of excitement and engagement to the festivities.

By opening their doors and hosting these events during the Norman Music Festival, Up Together Venue aims to create a vibrant and inclusive atmosphere that celebrates the local art community and provides a platform for emerging talent to shine.

Rashad’s vision for Up Together Venue extends beyond Norman, aspiring to impact cities like Oklahoma City and Dallas. His ambition is to replicate the venue’s nurturing environment, breaking down barriers for artists and providing them with the support and recognition they deserve.

“I just want the community to know that I’m here for you. You know, here for everybody that wants to be a part of something bigger.” Rashad emphasizes, inviting everyone to engage with Up Together Venue’s vibrant artistic endeavors.

I just want the community to know that I’m here for you. You know, here for everybody that wants to be a part of something bigger.

Rashad

As the venue continues to evolve, Rashad and Katie invite the community and artists to join their vision. Whether it’s participating in Norman Music Festival events, exploring future collaborations, or simply immersing oneself in the venue’s creative atmosphere, there’s a place for everyone.

Up Together Venue represents more than a physical space; it symbolizes a movement towards communal creativity and artistic celebration in Norman, inviting everyone to be part of this thriving creative journey.

To learn more about Up Together, check out their featured business profile below or find them on their social media at:

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Amy Singleton is a contributing author and online editor for Whirlocal South OKC, Moore, and Norman. She’s the host of the Queen Lead Podcast, a motivational & marketing keynote speaker, and the CEO atHITE.

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