Press Release

07/19/2017

Old Navy Turns Teachers into Rock Stars this Back-to-School Season

in Collaboration with ‘i am OTHER’

Eight Music Videos Celebrate the Launch of Old Navy’s cause platform 'onward!' 

 

SAN FRANCISCO – July 19, 2017 – Old Navy is championing the unsung heroes of back-to-school – the incredible teachers – through a series of music videos. The eight videos feature original songs penned and performed by extraordinary teachers from across the United States. Created in partnership with Pharrell Williams’ creative collective, i am OTHER, the videos celebrate the launch of Old Navy’s cause platform ONward! focused on taking the next generation to the next level.  

In each video of the ONward! album, teachers impart important messages to the next generation through catchy tunes while outfitted in Old Navy’s latest back-to-school styles.

  • The title track “ONward!” by Cedric Gardner, Youth Specialist and Professional Dancer from Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Milwaukee, puts Old Navy’s cause platform to music, featuring Boys & Girls Clubs’ kids as back-up dancers.
  • “Welcome Back to School” by Dwayne Reed, a Fifth Grade teacher at LEARN Campbell in Chicago, provides a sequel to Mr. Reed’s 2016 viral sensation “Welcome to the 4th Grade” with his signature uplifting rap style.
  • “Sing Out” by Nathan Myers, Choral Director at Booker T. Washington in Dallas, is a Broadway-style anthem about finding your voice.
  • “Strut” by Shani Perez, Elementary School Arts Teacher at PS 51 in New York City, celebrates the annual fashion show put on by her Fifth graders and features students strutting down the runway.
  • “Familia” by Kimberly Vega, Kindergarten Teacher at KIPP Illuminar in Los Angeles, mixes lyrics in Spanish and English in celebration of the strong Latino culture of East LA.
  • “A Fashion Computation” by Dr. Valerie Camille Jones, Middle School Math Teacher at Ron Clark Academy in Atlanta, is a rap about pulling together outfit combinations using simple math equations.
  • “Be Myself” by Beth Fortune, Orchestra Director at Washington Middle School in Seattle, is a folk rock piece co-written and performed with three of her students.
  • “I Choose You” by Craig Duchemin, Special Education teacher at Charles Hart Middle School in Washington, D.C., is a spoken word ballad about how our differences make us unique.  

The team at i am OTHER lent their expertise to the project, helping each teacher find their inner rock star through the songwriting and recording process. Darius Scott, a top 20 Finalist from Pharrell Williams’ team on Season 9 of NBC’s The Voice, served as the lead music producer on the project and also stars in the ONward! video. All videos are available on Old Navy’s YouTube page at YouTube.com/OldNavy, and the songs are also available via Apple Music and Spotify.

The videos celebrate Old Navy’s belief in big dreams and bigger opportunities for the next generation. Through cause platform ONward!, Old Navy partners with nonprofits to empower the next generation with real-world skills, training, and job opportunities to make a difference in our communities and blaze a path forward to a brighter future. For over a decade, Old Navy has partnered with Boys & Girls Clubs to help turn learners into leaders, and has donated over $10 million to support the cause. The brand has also committed to providing youth from local nonprofits with 10,000 jobs by 2020 through the This Way Ahead paid-internship and training program. Learn more at OldNavy.com/ONward.

During the back-to-school shopping season, Old Navy is sponsoring a fundraising campaign with the goal of raising $1 million to benefit Boys & Girls Clubs of America (BGCA) and Boys & Girls Clubs of Canada (BGCC). From July 27 to August 7, Old Navy will match in-store customer donations to BGCA and BGCC, combined up to $350,000. Customers can donate at the register at all U.S. and Canada stores. Old Navy is also adding functionality to their online checkout to allow customers to donate year-round to the nonprofits that ONward! supports.

About Old Navy

Old Navy is a global apparel and accessories brand that makes current American essentials accessible to every family. Originated in 1994, the brand celebrates the democracy of style through on-trend, playfully optimistic, affordable and high quality product. A division of San Francisco-based Gap Inc. (NYSE: GPS), Old Navy brings a fun, energizing shopping environment to its customers in more than 1,000 stores around the world. For more information, please visit www.oldnavy.com.

About i am OTHER

i am OTHER, founded by Pharrell Williams, is a creative collective and strategic consultancy specializing in music, film, television, fashion and branding. The multi-faceted entertainment company serves as the umbrella for Williams' various ventures. Built on the philosophy that individuality is the new wealth, this sentiment flows through each project. With offices in NY and LA, the collective creates content with a unique voice and no regard to rules.

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