Next Level

Next Level

Flag Hall Stage




UNC-Chapel Hill


Next Level is an initiative of the U.S. Department of State, the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, and Meridian International Center. Its mission is to use hip-hop music and dance to foster cross-cultural creative exchange in diverse communities, promoting mutual understanding, entrepreneurial skills, and conflict resolution in these audiences. Founded in 2013 and directed by UNC-Chapel Hill professor Mark Katz, Next Level has visited 20 countries on five continents, and builds on the historic legacy of the Department of State’s Jazz Ambassadors, who first traveled the world in the 1950s to connect with people through music. This performance will feature five Next Level alumni—two rappers, two dancers, and a DJ—who will showcase their talents and demonstrate the kind of artistic skills they teach to young people all over the world.