Revolution #256, January 15, 2012

Chicago New Year’s Party Raises $800 for BAsics Bus Tour

We received this correspondence:

In Chicago, 50 people came out on the evening of January 1 for a party at Wicker Park Arts Center to celebrate the New Year and to raise funds to help launch the BAsics Bus Tour in 2012. It was a fun, relaxed night that raised $800 for the bus tour and brought together people from different generations, nationalities and walks of life—students, revolutionaries, musicians, professionals and people active in the movements against police brutality, torture and mass incarceration.

One highlight of the evening was an interesting and fresh performance segment. First, a young songwriter-guitarist played his own composition and other tunes with a singing partner and a pianist-composer. Funny, sardonic and at times sad, their three songs seemed in keeping with the venue named the Cabaret Space. Another young pianist then performed a piano composition, "Snippets," by the progressive Polish-American composer Frederic Rzewski. The piece is both experimental and down to earth. Since "Snippets" is based on nursery rhymes, the performer punned that the piece encourages "getting down to BAsics."

The performance by the young artists was just one example of people stepping forward that evening in different ways with creativity, energy and input, seeing that our actions can make a difference.

Readings of letters from prisoners, one by a poetry instructor and another by an ex-prisoner, let everyone know how essential it is to get BAsics behind the prison walls. A call to donate to the BAsics Bus Tour was put forth with great enthusiasm by a college student (see "Changing the very possibilities that people have in their minds"). Passing the hat in the wake of the student’s call to donate created a feeling of excitement in the room that we are having an impact, and a determination that in the year 2012 we can go far beyond in projecting BA, his voice and work, way out in society.

Delicious dishes of Ethiopian, Middle Eastern and Puerto Rican food were donated by local restaurant owners. A special cake was sent by a Mexican bakery decorated with a frosting photo of a bus wrapped in a banner emblazoned with glowing orange letters advertising BA’s Revolution DVD.

The relaxed atmosphere made for lots of mingling, as people enjoyed the performances, watched the "Next Stop: Revolution" video, and listened to world music. "I really got a sense of Bob Avakian," commented a person at the party who recently has been relating to the people’s patrol to prevent police brutality. 


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