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Asia Insight TV Episode: ‘Cambodia’s Hip Hop School for Children’

  • Romi Grossberg
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NHK World-Japan television, Asia Insight episode, Oct 2023.

Founder and CEO of Tiny Toones, KK says: “Hip hop is like a colour to me. Who’d want to live in a world without colour?”

“In this episode, we chronicle a the day spent at this alternative school, striving to give all children there, a bright future.” In 2005, Cambodia’s first alternative school, Tiny Toones, was opened in Phnom Penh. In addition to general subjects, it adds courses on rap and dance into the mix. It was founded by a Cambodian man raised in the United States, who discovered a new purpose imparting his unique knowledge to young people. Most of the students come from impoverished backgrounds, and some enroll after dropping out of the public school system, or fleeing a turbulent family life.

“Today, we meet the staff and children who have created a new place to belong through their shared love of hip-hop.” 

Learn here about Tiny Toones, the hip hop centre that offers free education for any student – to learn in school subjects based on their academic level.

Listen to an interview with founder and CEO, KK, and meet some of the students including two new students, 15 and 17 year-old brothers who had until now, missed out on all facets of childhood. At Tiny Toones they get to study, play, sing and dance.

Meet Tiny Toones graduates (alumni) including Vouich, a professional rapper and music producer who teaches words games as part of their practice before teaching children to rap, saying, “Rap builds confidence.” Female Tiny Toones graduate (alumni) Serey also visits the centre. She is one of Cambodia’s most recognised female rap artists and comes to rap and sing with Vouich and other graduated artists. We also meet Tiny Toones graduate (alumni) Bboy Frog who continues to work at the centre and is the caretaker on the ground. Lastly we meet Tiny Toones graduate (alumni) Bboy Slick and other graduate dancers who return to the centre daily to practice as a team whilst rehearsing for a television dance competition. Naturally the newer kids love it when the alumni arrive and they get to watch and learn from their heros.


A huge thank you to NHK-Japan for this short documentary, episode news piece. What a joy and pleasure to work with this team of professionals who spent some real time at our centre, truly getting to know and understand our staff, volunteers, former staff and the kids we work with.

 Watch full episode


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