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Up with People (UWP) is an education organization whose stated mission is to bridge cultural barriers and create global understanding through service and a musical show. The UWP headquarters is in Denver, Colorado, USA, with satellite offices in Belgium and Mexico.
The roots of Up with People can be found in the Sing Out shows of Moral Re-Armament (MRA) in the mid-1960s. Previously, throughout its existence, MRA had staged dramatic performances with music to put forth its message which consisted of the 4 tenets of "love, honesty, purity and unselfishness". With the Sing Out shows, the dramatic elements were removed. Later, Up With People was separated from MRA under the leadership of J. Blanton Belk in 1968.
Each group, called a cast, after training in Denver, travels to nearly 20 communities across two or three continents, per semester, spending about one week in each community. Each week, they live with a local host family, participate in service projects, learn about different cultures through educational workshops, and perform in Up with People’s musical stage production. Programs begin in January or July of each year.
The documentary film Smile 'Til It Hurts: The Up with People Story  premiered at the 2009 Slamdance Film Festival. It is an unofficial documentary history of the organization. The film was directed by Lee Storey who is married to early alumnus William Storey.
The film documents the troupe's history from its origins in the late 1950s within Moral Re-Armament and the Sing-Out groups, through its successful years of the 1980s and subsequent decline.
The film states that the troupe, funded by corporate entities including Halliburton, General Motors, Exxon, and Searle, was intended to counter the hippie subculture. The film also claims that the musical group emphasized extreme right wing politics, and alleges that troupe rules included aspects of a religious cult, including arranged marriages.
Reviews have noted that, while a critique of the organization, the film has also shown respect for those who were involved and demonstrated their good intentions.
There are more than 21,000 members of alumni.
Ross Anderson, skier
Cecil Broadhurst, artist, songwriter, actor and playwright
Glenn Close, actress
John Eichelberger, politician
Timothy Gallwey, author (The Inner Game of Tennis)
Frank Gatson, Jr., choreographer (for Beyonce, Brandy, many others)
Kurt Krakowian, actor
Bastiaan Ragas, singer and actor
Tooske Ragas, actress and television host
John T. Reed, author and investor
Travis Rush, country music singer
Mark Schultz, contemporary Christian music artist
Rusty Wailes, rower
Michael Williams, television personality
1965 – Sing Out begins, a function of MRA, performing the song "Up with People" in their traveling show
1965 – Sing Out’s “Up with People” was the first event held at Jordan High School in Watts after the Los Angeles race riots
1966 – Reader’s Digest founder Dewitt Wallace underwrites first nationwide tour
1967 – The cast of Sing Out performs at the World Expo in Montreal
1968 – Up with People is incorporated as a non-profit organization, through the encouragement of President Dwight Eisenhower and German Chancellor Konrad Adenauer
1969 – Up with People is received by Pope Paul VI
1971 – Cast performs with Bob Hope for President Richard Nixon at the White House
1972 – Cast performs at the Munich Olympics after the tragic massacre of Israeli athletes
1973 – Up with People performs two sell-out shows at Carnegie Hall in New York City
1974 – Cast performs all summer at the World Expo-Spokane sponsored by General Electric
1975 – Up with People invited to facilitate Boston public school desegregation
1976 – Bicentennial tour of United States (771 cities, 3.9 million live attendance)
1976 – Cast performs in Super Bowl X in Miami, Florida
1977 – Cast presents three Television Specials with Televisa, introduced by Anthony Quinn
1978 – Up with People is featured in the Kodak Centennial Tour
1978 – Cast first visit to People’s Republic of China
1979 – King Juan Carlos of Spain meets cast in Madrid
1980 – Cast performs at Super Bowl XIV at the Rose Bowl in Pasadena, California
1982 – Cast performs at Super Bowl XVI at the Silverdome in Pontiac, Michigan
1983 – Up with People is received by Pope John Paul II in Rome
1983 – Five Up with People casts undertake General Motors 75th Anniversary Tour – 96 plants in 56 cities on two continents
1984 – Invited by the King and Queen of Jordan to Amman for the Jerash Festival
1986 – Cast performs at Super Bowl XX at the Superdome in New Orleans
1987 – Cast performs at Closing Ceremony of International Summer Special Olympics
1988 – Cast performs at World Expo 88 in Brisbane, Australia
1988 – Cast performs at Rugby Grand Finals half time show – National TV – Sponsored by Channel 7
1989 – Cast performs at the inauguration of George H. W. Bush in Washington, D.C.
1990 – Up with People’s 25th Anniversary celebrations are held in Denver, CO
1990 – Soviet students travel in Up with People for the first time
1992 – Cast performs at Earth Summit in Brazil – Sponsored by Environmental Foundation – USA
1993 – Up with People relocates world headquarters from Tucson, Arizona to Denver, Colorado
1993 – Cast performs in Denver for Pope John Paul II and for US President Bill Clinton
1994 – Performance in Hong Kong for Chinese New Year – Sponsored by Hong Kong Government
1995 – Up with People establishes its first formal education agreements with several US universities who will offer academic credit for UWP program completion to students who enroll at their university.
1996 – Cast performs at the Olympics in Atlanta and Disneyland in California – Sponsored by Disney
1997 – Red Cross benefit in Switzerland and projects in Portugal
1998 – Affiliation with America’s Promise – The Alliance for Youth
1998 – Cast performs at World Expo in Portugal and for Scania in Sweden
1999 – Cast performs at Celebration of Peace with Colin Powell in Denver, Colorado
1999 – Cast performs at International Red Cross event in Switzerland
2000 – Up with People participates in and performs at World Youth Day in Rome
2000 – Up with People holds 35th Anniversary celebrations in Orlando, Florida
2000 – Up with People suspends operations
2004 – Up with People re-opens with the launch of a new program model called WorldSmart
2005 – Up with People combines the original Up with People model with that of WorldSmart and once again enrolls participants in the Up with People student program.
2006 – Cast A 2006 is the first student tour to travel under the one-semester Up with People program model. Prior to 2000, all student tours were one year in length.
2007 – Up with People makes second appearance in the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade in New York City
2008 – Up with People performs in the Opening Ceremony for the Tournament of Roses Parade in Pasadena, CA
2008 – Viva la Gente (what Up with People is known as in Latin America) returns to Mexico for a five-week tour
2009 – Up with People helps Bermuda celebrate its 400th Anniversary with a month-long tour
2009 – Viva la Gente (Up with People) returns to Mexico for a seven-city national tour
2010 – UWP cast performs for Queen Silvia of Sweden
2011 – UWP returns to Pasadena, California as producers and featured performers in the Opening Celebration for the 122nd Rose Parade
2011 – UWP cast performs for Princess Margriet of the Netherlands
2011 – UWP welcomes first campers to inaugural session of Camp Up with People in Harrisonburg, Virginia
2012 - The "Friends of the Libraries" organization at The University of Arizona holds the "Arizona is Up With People" event to launch the "Up with People Archive Project" at UA, establishing a detailed collection of memorabilia, including, musical scores, photographs, film and video, musical arrangements, costumes and more. The core of the collection is from Up with People Founder and Chairman Emeritus J. Blanton Belk and his wife, Betty Belk.