dateline: Chicago, January 2005
This month, e-poets.net wraps a full year of regular, monthly Newswires. Hooray! And we're growing. We're breaking this Newswire into a couple pages to accommodate the new sources we're hearing from. New York readers can click directly to New York events on their own page. Our other columns and the more Chicago-centered news we're known for are installed below. Enjoy!
when the world is your home, charity begins abroad
The unusually strong subocean earthquake and tsunami of 26 December 2004 west of Indonesia has been the focus of much news. Among the countries settled along the eastern Indian Ocean, there have been more than 150,000 fatalities. Millions of survivors struggle to restore the simplest necessities of life. The world is eager to help. Volunteerism and charity have been extraordinary in the aftermath. But only a sustained and coordinated effort will help the survivors of this incredible natural disaster.
If you're seeking a way to help, we recommend contributing directly to one organization whose perspective and longevity in bringing relief and aid around the world knows few peers, UNICEF. From this page, you are only two clicks away from placing a secure donation to UNICEF for tsunami relief. The site is capable of accepting contributions from almost all countries around the world. We strongly encourage you to click to UNICEF, and be counted among those the world over who have risen to the call for help in south Asia.
Chicago Responds: HotHouse concert for Tsunami Relief on 9 January
Chicago's musicians and spoken word artists band together for a fundraiser. The HotHouse hosts Chicago Responds: HotHouse's Benefit Concerts for Tsunami Relief to raise money for those devastated by the tsunami. This all-day event (2:00 PM to 10:00 PM) will feature the music of local acts, including ensembles from the city's Southeast Asian community. The event will also include Southeast Asian cuisine.
Confirmed artists participating in the event include: Frank Orrall of Poi Dog Pondering, Funkadesi, Sam Prekop of The Sea and Cake, Kaylan Pathak's Jazzmata, The Goran Ivanovic Group, Ernest Dawkins, the Yoko-Tatsu Asian Experience, and DJ Warp with Adeesh Sathaye of San Fransico's Dhamaal, Hicham Chami's Trio Mosaic, Raiz Viva with Alexey Lanza, the Pintig Cultural Group, Robert Karimi, Mary Anne Mohanraj, Raul Fernandez and Mitote, Michigan Avenue Cantori, Pintig Cultural Group, Dance 2XS, Gingarte Capoeira, Mango Tribe, Marlon Esguerra, Ramon Bonzon (EBF) & The Primeridian. Additional artists will be announced as they join the bill.
HotHouse's goal is to raise $100,000 in January for organizations aiding victims of the tsunami. All of the proceeds from the benefit concerts will go to relief organizations (the Red Cross and American Friends Service Committee).
Sunday, 9 January, 2005. From 2:00 PM to 11:00 PM. Tickets are $25 in advance, and $25 at the door. The HotHouse is a 21-and-over venue; ID with proof of age required. For more information, click to hothouse.net. The HotHouse will also hold a benefit concert featuring Funkadesi on Friday, January 28. The HotHouse is at 31 E Balbo, Chicago (South Loop).
|poetry in print...|
The long-awaited third collection of scripts from Too Much Light Makes the Baby Go Blind has been published. The book is called 200 More Neo-Futurist Plays. It features 200 short plays written by the 27 different Neo-Futurist authors who were members of the ensemble from 1993-2002. This book includes much material from the original New York run of the show as well as the flagship Chicago production. The collection emphasizes plays with parts for multiple performers, both male and female -- from dialogue plays for two voices to active group pieces involving a dozen or more performers. Some pieces even allow the entire audience to get in on the act. The book is edited by Dave Awl, and features contributions by many favorite Neo ensemble members, such as Rob Neill, Diana Slickman, John Pierson, Phil Ridarelli, Heather Riordan, Geryll Robinson, Steve Mosqueda, and Lusia Strus.
Advance copies have been on sale on an unofficial, pre-release basis at The Neo-Futurarium since mid-December. The Neo-Futurists are looking toward an official book release party in January. The book will soon be available at mainstream and independent bookstores, and online at Amazon.com as well as the Hope and Nonthings Web site.
Copies are available by mail order from the publisher, Hope and Nonthings Press, for $16 plus $1.50 postage (that's $17.50 total) per copy. Mail your order with payment in the form of a check or money order made out to Hope and Nonthings, to this address:
Hope and Nonthings
PO Box 148010
Chicago, IL 60614-8010
The blog world publishes and consumes and recycles. It's turbulent with words. Need evidence? Check into Canadian author Rob McLennan's blog. McLennan is a voracious reader and writer, editor of Stanzas magazine and side/lines: a new canadian poetics (Insomniac Press, Toronto). He is now looking for new chapbooks to review. Got one? We thought you might.
Printed copies of chapbooks can be sent directly to Rob McLennan at 858 Somerset Street West, main floor, Ottawa ON K1R 6R7, Canada. Contributors are strongly encouraged to read McLennan's blog site prior to submission.
The Bridge Magazine 2004 Shoebox Series Art Collection is an impressive collection of work by established, emerging and young artists, much of which would sell for hundreds of dollars if purchased in a gallery. Shoeboxes may include pieces by Buzz Spector, Rodney Carswell, Brandon Alvendia, Duke and Battersby, Paul Davies/X Ray Lab, Phil Davis, Joel Feldman, Jonathon Gitelson, Terence Hannum, Peregrine Honig, Cody Hudson, Barbara Koenen, Van McElwee, Adelheid Mers, Moko Moko, Paul Nudd, Alain Park, Krista Peel, Sabrina Raaf, Shelly Rahme, Jennifer Ramsey, Beth Reitmeyer, and many others.
To order the Bridge Shoebox Series art collection, please either write us at 119 North Peoria, #3D, Chicago, IL 60607, call us at 312-421-2227 or order online. Ask about special packing: Bridge will even gift wrap your shoebox for you and mail it directly to your friend or family member.
|in Chicago's lit/arts community...|
On 7 January, the KuumbaLynx series renews its commitment to urban sounds, voices, and texts with a special show featuring DJ Itchie Fingers on the tables, performances and readings by Young Chicago Authors (YCA), and the UHH Synergy: B-Girl Crew from Chicago’s southwest side. YCA encourages self-expression and literacy among youth through creative writing, performance, and publishing. The night should be a lively time, between the music and performance.
Full info is available online by e-mailing KuumbaLynx website, or by calling 773-550-3849. All events take place at Clarendon Park, 4501 N Clarendon Ave, Chicago (Uptown neighborhood). KuumbaLynx Open Mindz is every first Friday of the month, from 7:00 to 10:00 PM. A free, 30-minute writing and arts workshop begins every evening at 7:00 PM. Open mic available.
After a brief hiatus, the Homolatté music/spoken word series is back up and running, in a new venue and with a slightly different monthly agenda, but with some familiar faces. The MC is still Scott Free, and the show is back to Wednesday night. But from now on, the last Wednesday of each month will be dedicated to Outmusic Outloud, a queer music open mic hosted by Lars von Keitz. All other Wednesdays will be dedicated to the regular Homolatté format, featuring one guest music act and one guest literary or spoken word act each night. With the exception of the Outmusic nights, Homolatté offers no open mic. Here is who's on deck for January 2005:
Jan 5th: Samaiya Ewing & Angie Heaton
Jan 12th: Rick Reed, Bill Breedlove & Anthony Whitaker
Jan 19th: Robert McDonald & John Hasbrouck
Jan 26th: Outmusic Outloud open-mic, hosted by Lars Von Keitz
Homolatté - Queer Words and Music, Wednesdays at 8:00 PM, at the Big Star Café, 1439 W. Jarvis (Rogers Park) Chicago. Phone 773-764-0413. Hosted by Scott Free. A full listing of featured artists is available at homolatte.com.
Stuck inside, weathering the cold of a Chicago January night? Want to warm up your house? Stay tuned to 88.7-FM/WLUW (or their streaming webcast) because at 9:00 PM Chicago poet Brenda Cárdenas will be at full throttle. Michael Watson, host of Wordslingers, cranks up the wireless for another of his classic poetry radio shows.
Cárdenas holds an MFA in Creative Writing from the University of Michigan-Ann Arbor and has received an Illinois Arts Council finalist award. She is co-editor of Between the Heart and the Land / Entre el corazón y la tierra: Latina Poets in the Midwest (MARCH/Abrazo Press, 2001). Cárdenas' poems have appeared in or are forthcoming in Poetic Voices Without Borders, U.S. Latino Literature Today, Bum Rush the Page: A Def Poetry Jam, RATTLE, Prairie Schooner, Learning by Heart: Contemporary American Poetry About School, and as a special chapter in the Book of Voices, right here on e-poets.net. With Sonido Ink(quieto), a spoken word and music ensemble, Cárdenas released the CD Chicano, Illnoize: The Blue Island Sessions (DeSPICable Records, 2001). She teaches Creative Writing, Composition, and Latin American, U.S. Latino/a, and American Literatures at Wright College in Chicago.
Hear it all Sunday night, 16 January, 9:00 PM on Wordslingers, 88.7-FM/WLUW. Or listen on line at wluw.org; click the "listen live" link when you arrive.
Slam and performance are quite alive and well at Mental Graffiti, the juggernaut alternative slam venue in Chicago's Wicker Park district. On 17 January, see Greg Bliss from Grand Rapids, Michigan. Bliss is the slam master of Grand Rapids' own reading/performance series, whose work is chocked with humor and insight, according to Mental Graffiti host du nuit Joel Chmara. Bliss, "... plays guitar and rips into the human psyche with radical, sharp observations. The man is on edge."
Chmara himself is worth a trip out to the show, but the program will be further reinforced by DJ Hates You mixing tracks between verses. The show starts at 8:30 PM sharp. Buzz around the venue is that there may be a venue change soon, so get on their mailing list to track this change.
Mental Graffiti, every Monday night and currently at The Big Horse, 1558 N Milwaukee Avenue, Chicago (Wicker Park, CTA Blue Line, near Damen station). The poetry stage is through restaurant and into bar. Open mic sign-up is at the door. $5. This is a 21+ venue; please bring legal ID. Hosted by the Mental Graffiti Collective.
The Molly Malone's Open Mic, with your hosts Nina Corwin and Al DeGenova, invites you to be part of one of the most highly respected open mics in the Chicago area. On Monday, January 10, join us for a very special poetry performance with Kevin Coval.
Kevin Coval has performed on four continents in seven countries at universities, high schools, and conferences, including; The Parliament of the World¹s Religions in Capetown, South Africa, Poetry Society of London, Yale, Stanford, St. Xavier¹s in Bombay, India and three seasons of Russell Simmons¹s HBO Def Poetry Jam. Coval's writing has appeared in The Spoken Word Revolution (Source Books), Awakening The Spirit (Skylight Paths), XCP: Cross-Cultural Poetics, Chicago Tribune, Chicago Reporter, Cross Currents, Fly Paper and regularly on Chicago Public Radio. Co-founder of "The Chicago Teen Poetry Festival, Louder Than A Bomb", Coval teaches creative writing throughout Chicago and around the country.
At Molly Malone's Irish Pub, 7652 Madison Street, Forest Park, IL (near west Chicago suburbs). Phone 708-366-8073 for info. Donations support the featured artist and are cited as, "$5 if you can, $3 if you can't." Poetry/fiction at Molly's is the second Monday of every month. Evening schedule is: 7:00 PM - open mic sign-up begins; 7:30 - open mic; 8:30 - featured reader; 9:15 - open mic continues if necessary.
On these coming dates, Molly's will present the following artists: Feb 14 - Gary Lilley; March 14 - Lauren Matthews; April 11 - Richard Newman, editor of River Styx magazine, from St. Louis; May 9 - Erika Mikkalo; and on June 13 - Mike Puican.
Myopic taps deeply into Chicago's rich critical and creative energy this month, featuring artists that publish e-lit', cross the teacher/student bridge, and embrace multiple genres and languages. It's a rich selection...
9 January - Jeremy P. Bushnell
Jeremy Bushnell writes regularly on experimental music and literature for Invisible City Productions (www.invisible-city.com), an organization dedicated to the production and promotion of secret media. He's the author of Imaginary Year, a serialized web narrative documenting the lives of a group of fictional Chicagoans in real time. He also performs in the improvisational drone collective Number None.
16 January - James Shea & Parker Smathers
James Shea lives in Chicago. His poems have been published in numerous journals, including Bridge, Crazyhorse, jubilat, and LIT. One of his poems appears in Isn't It Romantic: 100 Love Poems by Younger American Poets (Verse, 2004).
Parker Smathers is the author and illustrator Green Poems, a chapbook. His work has been published or is forthcoming in Denver Quarterly and Iowa Review.
23 January - Jen Besemer, Stella Radulescu, & Ela Kotkowska
Jen Besemer is a poet, visual artist, editor, translator and essayist. Her primary translation focus is on the works of Tristan Tzara, particularly his surrealist and later works. Her essays and reviews appear regularly in Rain Taxi, and her poems appear regularly in Lilliput Review, The Bitter Oleander and other magazines. New poems and translations can be found in the November issues of Bridge and milk magazine. A selection of Jen's poetry and art can be viewed on her website. She teaches English at Wright College.
Stella Vinitchi Radulescu was born in Romania. She has a Ph.D. in French from the University of Bucharest and an M.A. in French from the University of Illinois at Chicago, and she is a lecturer in French at Northwestern University. Her most recent chapbook, Self Portrait in Blue, was published by March Street Press in 2004.
Ela Kotkowska's chapbook Nom de Plume was published in 2004 by Yen Agat Books. She loves plumes as much as Plume loves love.
30 January - Diane Wakoski and Robert McDonald
Diane Wakoski was born in Whittier, California in 1937 and educated at U.C. Berkeley. She has published twenty-two full-length collections of poems and many other slim volumes. Her most recent books are Argonaut Rose (1998) and The Butcher's Apron (2000) from Black Sparrow Press. In 2005 Godine Press, which has acquired the Black Sparrow inventory, is releasing a new edition of her William Carlos Williams Prize (1989) selected poems, Emerald Ice. She is currently Writer in Residence at Michigan State University.
Robert McDonald attended Michigan State University, where he studied German and then poetry. Diane Wakoski, the Poet-in-Residence at MSU, was a big influence on his writing, as well as his thesis advisor. McDonald cites Frank O’Hara, Gertrude Stein, Wakoski, Frank Bidart, and Charles Simic as early inspiration for his poetry. More recent influences include the writers Lisa Jarnot, Peter Grizzi, Carol Maso, and Anne Carson. His poetry has appeared in many small journals and zines, including The New York Review, The Red Cedar Review, paragraph, Mudfish, Southern Poetry Review, Oyster Boy Review, and New American Scurvy, among others.
All readings are at 7:00 PM, upstairs at Myopic Books, 1564 N Milwaukee Avenue (in Wicker Park, near the intersection of North and Damen). Click to the Myopic website for the full schedule, including artists to be featured in the months ahead.
This month, Danny's features Nick Twemlow and Robyn Schiff.
Nick Twemlow's poems have lately appeared or are forthcoming in Verse, Octopus, Colorado Review, Northwest Review, Court Green, and LIT. He is the co-editor of The Canary, and works, from his new home in Chicago, as a freelance writer for The Academy of American Poets and Filmmaker magazine, as well as writing scripts for first aid industrial videos. A graduate of the Iowa Writers' Workshop, he will spend most of 2005 in New Zealand, on a Fulbright fellowship.
Robyn Schiff’s first collection of poems, Worth, which was recognized with an award from the Greenwall Fund by the Academy of American Poets, was published in 2002 by the University of Iowa Press. She holds an M.A. in Medieval Studies from the University of Bristol, in England, and an M.F.A. from The Iowa Writers’ Workshop. She has taught poetry as a Visiting Professor at the University of Oregon, and recently relocated with her husband, the poet Nick Twemlow, to Chicago, where she is a Visiting Professor of English at Northwestern University. Robyn is a contributing editor of the literary journal The Canary.
Wednesday, 19 January at 7:30 PM. (21 and over/please bring ID). At Danny's Tavern, 1951 W Dickens, near the intersection of Damen and Armitage (Bucktown, Chicago). Phone 773-489-6457.
Poetry meets new music in the company of new media at the Green Mill in an unusual and fresh , It's a New Music Showcase, hosted by George Flynn, composer and DePaul University professor. On the bill: Nina Corwin, on the occassion of the second edition release of her book Conversations With Friendly Demons and Tainted Saints (Puddin'head Press, 2004). She will be joined by dancer/choreographer Regina Lavery, and members of the Serendipity Percussion Ensemble in a program of her poetry.
Augmenting that will be a performance by Julia Miller: "six common complaints" for MIDI guitar, laptop, and live video. Taking a visual cue from DJ culture, Miller combines real-time electronic imagery, poetry, original music. For all its history, the Green Mill has probably never seen anything like this before.
New Music at the Green Mill, 2:00 to 5:00 PM, Sunday 16 January, at 4802 N Broadway, Chicago (Uptown). Phone 773-878-5552.
An encore of Julia Miller's "six common complaints" will be performed at 10:00 PM for Locale at Rodan, 1530 N. Milwaukee Ave (Wicker Park). Phone 773-276-7036. Click for more info on Locale.
Sandra Binion is an internationally recognized multi-media artist whose video work focuses on distilling new associations from her travels. Mirage, her new installation created for the Evanston Art Center, is based on her recent trip to Cuba and explores the double image of a "forbidden" place -- Cuba forbidden to Americans and the United States forbidden to Cubans -- altering the viewer's perception of political and cultural myths. This exhibition is in conjunction with "Politic of a Moment" curated by Marjorie Vecchio and including work by artists Lucy Mueller, Larry Lee, Sarah Wild, and Jeffrey Grauel.
A multi-media installation by Sandra Binion in the Octagon Gallery of the Evanston Art Center, from 9 January through 13 February, 2005. Opening reception Sunday, 9 January, 1:00 PM to 5:00 PM; a discussion with the artist begins at 2:30 PM. The Evanston Art Center is at 2603 Sheridan Road, Evanston, IL 60201 (Chicago north suburbs). Phone 847-475-5300 or click to evanstonartcenter.org. Gallery Hours are: Mondays thru Thursdays 10:00 AM to 4:00 PM, and 7:00 PM to 10:00 PM; on Fridays and Saturdays 10:00 AM to 4:00 PM only; and on Sundays 1:00 PM to 8:00 PM. Galleries are closed the fourth Thursday evening of the month.
On Christmas Eve, people were definitely not standing by patiently waiting for ol' Saint Nick to just drop by. Kids, teachers, writers and media makers gathered at Video Machete for the "PoMoFoMo Listening Partay and Birthday Bash." Illumni Entertainment released some new recordings for the occasion, called "BLACK KID MUSIC." This is the first EP featuring Jai B. Poet/performance artists Duriel Harris shared the celebration that night as Christmas Day was also her birthday.
Mentored by Chicago's own NO ID, Jai B is the winner of the 2004 "Showtime in Chicago" talent show. His production credits include two tracks on 11:1's "Striving" and "Soma" acclaimed poet Duriel Harris's upcoming sound recording. Duriel Harris's poetry volume Drag (Elixir Press 2003) was named one of the best poetry volumes of 2003 by Black Issues Book Review. Harris's performance poetry is well-regarded for her interdisciplinary approach, incorporating audio art, DJ grooves, post-modern texts, and performance art. The EP is a limited release, so people wishing to hear (and own) the collaboration should get in touch with Video Machete.
Video Machete is at 1180 N. Milwaukee, 2nd Floor, Chicago IL 60622. Phone 773-301-7564.
We've been busy around here lately. If you haven't heard the buzz already, here are a few links you may want to check out -- all within e-poets.net:
Comedian Dan Kaufman's saga of conquering stage jitters makes the rest of life seem like falling off a log... new spoken word by Al de Genova, some top-flight audiopoetry by JJ Tindall, poetic narrative (or, possibly, a 17-minute personal Bildungsroman) by Christopher Piatt, and a remounted Book of Voices chapter for Chuck Perkins.
A few other links caught our eye outside our immediate website... Bernadette Mayer's notes on journaling and writing exercise, some fun, direct, and handy tips to get that poetry out of you without dumbing-down... The Independent Reviews, the online host for Poets Beyond the Half Shell in LA, has an interesting mix of film, literature, and poetry critique...
Some links from e-poets network group members... Originating in Uruguay, the multilingual poetry of Veronica Pamoukaghlian (aka VEROZONE)... In the USA, there's Let's Do It on the Road, Susan Chenelle's online resource for women spoken-word artists planning tours to promote their work... and it's good work! ... And from France, a new video about nature and its representation in the human mind by Philippe Boisnard. He notes that you may wish to watch it only if you have DSL or T1, or T3. But in our experience, DSL is plenty good enough.
In the arena of commerce and direct dialogue... Suburban Chicago writer John D. Evans sets an ambitous agenda with his direct offering of books and poetry. The Virtual Artists Collective connects artist/composers with audiences, from the collective vision of composer Clarice Assad and poet Steve Schroeder... The Moontown Café is a subscription-based website focussed on the creative writer, with access to workshops, links, conferences and writers' forums...
And this item came to us in December, on the Contemporary Poet Guild, a group on Yahoo Groups. According to group founder Gerard Kuc, the group, "... already has 45 memebers from around the world of various styles and tastes, and 320+ messages, related voting polls, picture gallery of poets, and no unrelated advertising in the message board. Members submit and critique each others work, and may get published in a group project -- no contests." Ah, a lack of commercialism. Sounds good to us. Click to the group's homepage and check it out.
As always, we thank our friends for their continued readership and news tips. Keep the good news coming. Click the "contact us" link below if you have news tips of your own.
- Kurt Heintz, founder
e-poets network, Chicago
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