Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Bellevue Literary Event (ArtsCrush) Lit Twice: Luminado Dos Veces

Hey ya'll I'm super excited to be featured at this event produced by La Sala, as part of ArtsCrush taking place Wednesday October 12th at Bellevue Arts Museum! 
Hope to see you there!

An ArtsCrush Featured Literary Event at Bellevue Arts Museum

(Seattle, WA – September 19, 2011) On Wednesday, October 12, 5:30 - 8pm, La Sala and Bellevue Arts Museum (BAM) are hosting a reading of new literary creations inspired by the objects of adornment in BAM’s groundbreaking exhibition Think Twice: New Latin American Jewelry. Don’t miss this exciting fusion of literary and visual art!

Think Twice (through October 16 at BAM) brings together more than 130 works by over 90 artists from 25 countries. Think Twice is the largest collection of contemporary Latin American jewelry to be seen in the United States and BAM is the only museum in the Northwest to showcase this fascinating exhibition.

Lit Twice/Luminado dos Veces is a response to this unprecedented collection of artwork.

Local writers Nilki Benitez, Catalina M. Cantú, Felicia Gonzalez, Gabriella Gutiérrez y Muhs, Donna Miscolta, Maria De Lourdes Victoria and Rita Wirkala were given three images from Think Twice to use as inspiration for two new literary works of art.

Lit Twice is recipient of a grant via a unique partnership between Arts Crush and Amazon.com that was given to foster new writing and new writers/authors. The seven writers are a thrilling group of established and emerging literary artists. This exciting Arts Crush Featured Event builds community, invites collaboration, and celebrates creativity.

La Sala is a collective formed to coalesce and mobilize the growing Latino/Latina arts community of the Seattle/Bellevue area. Bellevue Arts Museum is the Pacific Northwest’s center for the exploration of art, craft and design. Arts Crush is a month-long festival that connects artists and audiences with invigorating new experiences at hundreds of events across the region.

Come early for a docent tour, music, and wine and appetizers. Enjoy bilingual interpretations exploring this mesmerizing exhibit.

Schedule: *** 5:30 pm Docent Tour of Think Twice: New Latin American Jewelry *** 6:30 pm Reception with music by Miho & Diego Duo *** 7:00-8:00 pm Literary Readings

About the Participating Writers:

Nilki Benitez is an Acentos Poetry Foundation Fellow of Colombian heritage. She is a poet and journalist whose work has appeared in several online and print media. Her poetry is art as a weapon for social and environmental justice.

Catalina M. Cantú of Mexican/Madeiran heritage writes essays, poetry, and prose, inspired by her experiences in social justice, domestic relationships, and economic survival. She formerly chaired Los Norteños Northwest Latino Writers Group. She is now writing a young adult adventure series.

Felicia Gonzalez
was born in Cuba. A Hedgebrook alumna, her writing has received numerous awards including Artist Trust Fellowship, 4 Culture, and CityArtist. She’s currently working on a collection of interrelated short stories, Swimming in Mercury, exploring the relationship of language to identity.

Gabriella Gutierrez y Muhs, PhD. is an associate professor at Seattle University and the 2009-2012 Latin American Studies Program Director. Her literary and cultural criticism has been published in various journals in the US and abroad. She is an anthologized Chicana writer, as well as a Latina/Chicana cultural worker.

Donna Miscolta of Mexican/Filipino heritage is the author of the novel When the de la Cruz Family Danced. Her unpublished story collection Natalie Wood’s Fake Puerto Rican Accent was a finalist for the 2010 Grace Paley Award for Short Fiction. Find news of her publications, awards, and residencies at www.donnamiscolta.com.

Maria de Lourdes Victoria is from Veracruz, Mexico. Her fiction has been published internationally in English and Spanish. Her second novel, Beyond Justice, took third place at the prestigious Planeta Book Award. Her first novel, I leave you the sea, was the finalist for the Mariposa Book Award. Her short stories have appeared in prominent literary journals in the US.

Rita Wirkala is a writer and a teacher (University of Washington) originally from Argentina. Excerpts of her novel El encuentro (Pearson Ed) are in her blog: http://ritawirkalawriting.blogspot.com/ She is the director of All Bilingual Press, a company specialized in Spanish texts for children.

Monday, August 22, 2011

Award-winning author Michael Hogan on Writing

I'm super thrilled to be sharing with you today a guest post on "Writing" by author Michael Hogan. 

Today is Day One of the author's virtual book tour of The Irish Soldiers of Mexico presented by Condor Book Tours. Make sure you check out the rest of the book tour schedule after the post so you can follow along with the book tour. 

Michael Hogan

On Writing

It comes from doing and doing.—Charles Bukowski.

It may well be that genius consists in something ordinary people
never guess at—obstinate persistence.

Few readers would guess that a street poet like Bukowski would have much in common with a classic author such as Stendhal but they would be mistaken. Both were widely read, both were persistent, both had highly disciplined writing habits, both persisted even when their talent was not recognized, both loved classical music, and both were widely appreciated in Germany even though neither lived there (Bukowski lived in L.A. and Stendhal in Paris). But it is the wide reading, the persistence and the disciplined writing habits that I would like to talk about today.

Aldous Huxley once wrote that there is “no great writing without great reading.” Most successful writers tend to agree. Stephen King, for example, an author appealing to a middle brow audience nevertheless has many allusions to history, contemporary literature, poetry and even Shakespeare in his work. He is someone who reads widely and enthusiastically.  A love of language permeates his work. Successful poets such as W.S. Merwin, the Poet Laureate of the United States read the classics. Merwin also reads poetry in French and Spanish, as well as his American contemporaries just to “see what they’re up to.” He also reads biographies, histories, and science. Sometimes we get so involved with our own work and then the marketing of it that we forget this important factor. We need to re-charge the mind, we need to fill up the vocabulary basin, and widen our vision through the eyes of others. We need to read a little bit each day and then more widely on weekends and vacations.
I first began writing short essays in my journals as well as poetry. My first publications were in small literary magazines and campus publications. I have since gone on to publish 18 full length books in my lifetime, and my poetry, stories and articles have appeared in hundreds of magazines. My work has been translated into six languages. But I have written perhaps 3,000 poems over the past thirty years, over 500 articles and stories, and 36 full length manuscripts. So only about 15% of my writing has been published. That means that 85% of the work I sent out came back with rejection slips (or I received a notice of rejection by email). My conversations with other widely published writers suggest that 10%-15% of submitted work being published is about average. So, it is important to believe in yourself as a writer; to feel that you have something to say and to have the faith that sooner or later if you persist, an audience for your work will be found. In the meantime, you keep sharpening your skills, keep reading, and keep open to a wide range of interests.
And of course, keep writing. What I have found is that only a small part of the time do I feel inspired, or fired up with a genuine desire to communicate something. Many days I just show up at my desk and work away at a project with each word  being drawn out with the same pain and difficultly as a reluctant tooth at the dentist’s office. However, even on those dull days I am learning discipline;  I am practicing my craft, and I will be ready with the words and the style when the inspiration comes as it always does sooner or later. I should also note that for most of my writing career I also worked as a teacher. So that meant correcting papers long into the night. Most of my “real” writing took place on weekends, Christmas vacation, spring break, and in the early morning.

The best advice I ever had from a fellow writer was from the poet, William Stafford, and I will share that now. When I told him that sometimes I found it difficult to make time to write, that I was locked in by the demands of family and work, he said, “Get up when the house is quiet, before the day actually begins and do your work then. Most places you can still be free if you wake up before other people.”
So, in the early morning hours of each school day I would get up early, do a short meditation and then sketch out a few paragraphs in my journal, or a draft or a poem, or an idea for a story. This was my real freedom from the daily work or teaching and the other demands of the day as a parent. And, day by day, year by year, those pages added up to books. Now I have the time to work on my writing full time, thanks to William Stafford. “Most places you can still be free if you wake up before other people. “ How true, in so many ways.

Michael Hogan
Guadalajara, Jalisco, Mexico

Learn more about Michael Hogan by visiting his website, facebook & The Irish Soldiers of Mexico Facebook page.

Learn more about Condor Book Tours by visiting our website & facebook page.

The Irish Soldiers of Mexico Book Tour Schedule:
Book Tour Schedule 

Sunday August 21 5pm Eastern/2pm Pacific Author Livechat. View the instant replay at Condor's Author Chat Salon!

Mon Aug 22 Musings (Author Guest Post)

Tues Aug 23 Latino Book Examiner (Author Q&A)

Wed Aug 24 Dulce Bread & Book Shop (Review)

Thurs Aug 25 Juan of Words ( Review)

Fri Aug 26 New Latina (Author Q&A)


Mon Aug 29 Vida de Oro (Author interview)

Tues Aug 30 La Bloga (Author Guest Post)

Wed Aug 31 Franky Benitez (Review)

Thurs Sep 1 Latina Book Club (Review)

Fri Sep 2 Chica Writer (Review)

Purchase your copy of The Irish Soldiers of Mexico from Condor's BookStore & 100% commissions earned will be donated to the Isabel Allende Foundation.

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Condor Book Tours Presents: The Irish Soldiers of Mexico by Michael Hogan~A virtual book tour

 Condor Book Tours is proud to present

The Irish Soldiers of Mexico
Michael Hogan

August 22 thru September 2

On the eve of Mexican-American War of 1848, a group of recently arrived Irish immigrants deserted the U.S. army and joined the Mexican army as the Saint Patrick's Battalion. This excellent study explores the motivations of the Irishmen, their valiant contributions to the Mexican cause, and the consequences for them when they were ultimately captured.

The Irish Soldiers of Mexico sold out four editions in English and two editions in Spanish from 1997 to 2001. It has been the basis of an MGM feature film starring Tom Berenger, two documentaries and has also been used in many history classes both in the United States and abroad. As Michael Hogan rightly points out in his introduction, American textbooks scarcely devote attention to this war. "Coverage," he writes, "generally consists of a two or three page section entitled Westward Expansion or Manifest Destiny."

The book is now available (Kindle & traditional) for the first time from Amazon

michael_hogan.jpg  Michael Hogan lives in Colonia Providencia, Guadalajara, Mexico, with his wife Lucinda Mayo, the internationally known fabric artist. Born in Newport, Rhode Island in 1943, he is the author of sixteen books, including a collection of short stories, six books of poetry, collected essays on teaching in Latin America, a novel, and a history of the Irish battalion in Mexico which formed the basis for an MGM movie starring Tom Berenger. His work has appeared in many journals such as the Paris Review, the Harvard Review, Z-Magazine, Political Affairs and the Monthly Review. He is a consultant to the U.S. Department of State’s Office of Overseas Schools in Latin America. As an author he has received wide recognition for his work, including a PEN Award, two Pushcart Prizes, an NEA fellowship, the Benjamin Franklin Award, the gold medal of the Mexican Geographical Society.

For more information visit the author's website at http://drmichaelhogan.com
  Book Tour Schedule
Sunday August 21 5pm Eastern/2pm Pacific Author Livechat at Condor's Author Chat Salon!
Mon Aug 22 Musings (Author Guest Post on Writing)
Tues Aug 23 Latino Book Examiner (Author Q&A)
Wed Aug 24 Dulce Bread & Book Shop (Review)
Thurs Aug 25 Juan of Words ( Review)
Fri Aug 26 New Latina (Author Q&A)
Mon Aug 29 Vida de Oro (Author interview)
Tues Aug 30 La Bloga (Author Guest Post)
Wed Aug 31 Franky Benitez (Review)
Thurs Sep 1 Latina Book Club (Review)
Fri Sep 2 Chica Writer (Review)
Don't mis out on all the fun during this book tour--buy your copy of Irish Soldiers of Mexico by Michael Hogan NOW ! 100% commissions from purchases made thru Condor's Bookstore will be donated to the Isabel Allende Foundation.

 Product Details
  • Paperback: 298 pages
  • Publisher: CreateSpace (May 25, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1463502451
  • ISBN-13: 978-1463502454

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 1531 KB
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 1463502451
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B004G5Z668
  • Lending: Enabled

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Seattle Event: Represent! A Multicultural Playwrights' Festival

The Hansberry Project Hosts
REPRESENT! A Multicultural Playwrights’ Festival
July 19 – 24, 2011

Represent! A Multicultural Playwrights’ Festival
Stage readings of new plays by Keith Josef Adkins, Joann Farias & Lauren Yee

7/19-7/22 7:30 PM
7/23 2 PM, 5PM & 8PM

7/24 at 2PM
In the Bullitt Cabaret at ACT Theatre, 700 Union Street, Downtown Seattle

$5 General Admission
$15 Festival Pass
Includes the opportunity to meet the writers!

ACT Theatre
Ticket Office: (206) 292-7676
700 Union Street, Seattle WA 98101

The Hansberry Project, in a joint venture with eSe Teatro, SIS Productions and Pratidhwani, will host Represent!: A Multicultural Playwrights' Festival July 19-24.

The festival will feature staged readings of 3 new full-length plays, an evening dedicated specifically to showcasing the work of six very talented local writers and a panel about the role of ethnically specific theatres in the development of new work.

According to Hansberry Artistic Director, Valerie Curtis-Newton: 
We have always been clear that the work of the playwright is central to all that we do. They are theatre’s true generative artists. Their vision, passion and craft call the rest of us to the process.

"The Hansberry Project is committed to doing whatever we can do to support them. Last, year, we took a huge step forward -- commissioning our first play. This year, we are showing support for playwrights by hosting our first new play festival. eSe Teatro, SIS Productions and Pratidwhani have accepted our invitation to join us in making a space for playwrights of color to be heard. We’re very excited by the energy that is being generated by this new collaboration. Our hope is that REPRESENT! will become an annual event. ”

A local writers’ showcase kicks off the week. The playwrights whose work will be included are: LaChris Jordan, Reginald A. Jackson, Danielle Villegas, Lonnie Tristan Renteria, Kathy Hsieh and Maggie Lee.

The heart of REPRESENT! is a series of full length readings by some of the most exciting playwrights on the national scene. The selected plays are:

directed by Valerie Curtis-Newton

Built largely on the success of its Black middle class inhabitants (doctors, lawyers, school administrators), Negroville is fraught with dysfunction – loneliness, infidelity, and a loss of history. Over the course of a single day, the town’s well-educated African-American mayor, Cornell Gates, is caught in a series of events that challenge the truth about the town’s history and forever change the future for this set of middle class African-Americans. Presented by The Hansberry Project.

by Joann Farias
directed by Arlene Martinez-Vickers

Jeff, second generation Mexican-American, gives up his Law degree for Anthropology and a trip to Guatemala to study the Mayan's religious believes. This study will initiate a journey of transformation, not only for Jeff, but also for the Mayan shamans he comes in contact with. This insightful text by Joann Farias explores the effect that two colliding cultures can have on each other, in this age of globalization. Presented by eSe Teatro.

SAMSARA by Lauren Yee
directed by Agastya Kohli

When American couple, Katie and Craig, make a last-ditch effort to create a baby of their own, their quest leads them to India to “rent” a surrogate. A hilarious, unsettling look at whether we can truly achieve intimacy in the face of shrinking worlds and expanding boundaries. Presented by SIS Productions and Pratidhwani.

The festival will close with a conversation entitled REPRESENTING: Ethnically-Specific Theatre in the 21st Century. Valerie Curtis-Newton, Kathy Hsieh, Danielle Villegas, Arlene Martinez-Vickers and Agastya Kohli will discuss the role of ethnically specific theatre in the development of new work.

All events will take place in the Bullitt Cabaret at ACT Theatre. Tickets are $5 for individual events/$15 festival passes are available online at www.acttheatre.org, or at the ACT Theatre Ticket Office at 700 Union Street, open daily M-F from 12 noon until 7 p.m., (206) 292-7676.

About The Hansberry Project

The Hansberry Project is a professional theatre laboratory created to present the work of black
theatre artists to as broad and diverse and audience as possible. HP produces main stage shows,
presents staged readings and community conversations, develops new works, and hosts conversations
between artists and audiences. HP is committed to building a community in which the voices of
black theatre artists – artfully expressing their observations, investigations, hopes and dreams - are an
integral part of a rich, full-throated civic conversation.

For more information about the Hansberry Project visit www.acttheatre.org/hansberry.

About eSe Teatro

eSe Teatro is a collective of professionally trained local Latino theatre artists actively providing a creative
home for Latino Artists to explore their craft. eSe Teatro’s mission is to empower local Latino artists to
generate, produce, present, and promote Latino theater, including bilingual, Spanglish and Spanish-speaking

About SIS Productions

SIS Productions is a production company that strives to create, develop and produce quality works that
involve Asian American women, their themes, and Asian American issues. SIS Productions encourages opportunities and support for Asian American women to be involved in all aspects of the production of artistic endeavors.

About Pratidwhani

Pratidhwani is a non-profit cultural organization based in the Seattle area. At its core, Pratidwhani is a group of professionals of Indian heritage, who are extremely enthusiastic and passionate about the artistic traditions of our homeland. The main objective of the organization is the promotion and cultivation of the performing arts of the Indian subcontinent.

About ACT: A Theatre of New Ideas - Raising Consciousness Through Theatre

Located in the heart of downtown Seattle and serving a population of curious, open-minded, and brave
audiences, ACT - A Contemporary Theatre is the only theatre in Seattle dedicated to producing contemporary work with promising playwrights and local performing artists since 1965. A theatre of new ideas, ACT serves as a cultural engine that makes plays, dance, music, and film that touch us.

Because contemporary life demands examination, ACT is driven to inspire and strengthen our diverse community through works that advance our understanding of human life. With more than 100,000 people who attend shows annually, ACT is an interactive community where artists and the public witness, contemplate, and engage in dialogue on today’s thought-provoking issues, ideas and art, presented with intelligence, insight, and humor.

Monday, June 20, 2011

Condor Book Tours Author Interview Series: Robert Renteria

Condor Book Tours 
Mi Barrio by Robert Renteria

Today I'm honored to share with you an audio interview with author Robert Renteria.

Renteria's book From the Barrio to the Board Room (Writers of the Round Table Press, 2008) inspired the creation of the From the Barrio Foundation, as well as a state standard-based curriculum.

More than 80 schools, libraries, organizations and facilities around the U.S. have implemented the curriculum along with the books to support their at-risk youth communities.

Robert Renteria, author, CEO, philanthropist

Mi Barrio,  a graphic novel (comic book) adaptation of From the Barrio to the Board Room was written to support elementary level students and other readers who will benefit from the message but who might not be able to access the 7th grade reading level of the full book.

*Both books are available in English and Spanish.

I'm proud to be hosting Mi Barrio thru Condor Book Tours. Please visit Condor for more information regarding the books, author Robert Renteria & to see how Condor supports community thru literacy.

Check out the rest of the Virtual Book Tour schedule below the media player!

click on the play button on the player to hear the interview with Robert Renteria

Want to talk more about the issues raised in the interview? Please Join us for an author livechat with Robert Renteria on Sunday June 26 7pm Eastern/6pm Central at Condor's Author Chat Salon

  Book Tour Schedule
Author Robert Renteria and his graphic novel Mi Barrio will be stopping by each of the following blogs from 6/20 thru 7/1. Make sure you stop by and say hello, you may just win a copy of Mi Barrio by Robert Renteria!


Mon June 20 Musings http://nilkibenitez.blogspot.com
Tues June 21 Dulce Bread & Book Shop http://dulcebreadandbookshop.com/
Wed June 22 Frankie Benítez http://juliorvarela.com/
Thurs June 23 Brown Girl BookSpeak http://books.browngirlspeaks.com/
Fri June 24 Latina Book Club http://www.latinabookclub.com/


Mon June 27 VivirLatino http://vivirlatino.com/ 
Tues June 28 Blogs By Latinas http://www.clicklatina.com/
Wed June 29 Dos Idiomas/Two Languages http://www.ofelianj.com/
Thurs June 30 Juan of Words http://www.juanofwords.com/
Fri July 1 Sammy Makes Six http://www.sammymakessix.com/

Please consider purchasing a copy of Mi Barrio from Condor's BookStore* 100% commissions will be donated to From the Barrio Foundation.

*Amazon affiliate

Friday, June 17, 2011

Condor Book Tours Presents: Mi Barrio by Robert Renteria ~ A Virtual Book Tour

Mi Barrio 
by Robert Renteria
(SmarterComics/Writers of the Round Table, 2011)
As Told To Corey Michael Blake
Illustrated by Shane Clester 
ISBN-10: 1610660005 
ISBN-13: 978-1610660006

Book Tour Schedule:

Mon June 20 thru Fri July 1

Author Robert Renteria and his graphic novel Mi Barrio will be stopping by each of the following blogs from 6/20 thru 7/1. Make sure you stop by and say hello, you may just win a copy of Mi Barrio by Robert Renteria!


Mon June 20 Musings http://nilkibenitez.blogspot.com
Tues June 21 Dulce Bread & Book Shop http://dulcebreadandbookshop.com/
Wed June 22 Frankie Benítez http://juliorvarela.com/
Thurs June 23 Brown Girl BookSpeak http://books.browngirlspeaks.com/
Fri June 24  Latina Book Club http://www.latinabookclub.com/

Join us for an author livechat
 Sunday June 26th at 7pm Eastern/6pm Central  
at Condor Book Tour's

Mon June 27 VivirLatino http://vivirlatino.com/

Tues June 28 Blogs By Latinas http://www.clicklatina.com/
Wed June 29 Dos Idiomas/Two Languages http://www.ofelianj.com/
Thurs June 30 Juan of Words  http://www.juanofwords.com/
Fri July 1 Sammy Makes Six http://www.sammymakessix.com/

***Have questions for the author? Want to share your experience? Have a youth that could use some motivation and inspiration? Grab them & your friends and join us for an author livechat on Sunday June 26th at 7pm Eastern/6pm Central at Condor Book Tours' Author Chat Salon.

A few words from the Robert Renteria:

Mi Barrio Reviews

Adapted from the book From the Barrio to the Board Room (2008) by Renteria, who created a foundation that brings his message of hope to inner-city schools...Mi Barrio hits all the familiar points in a straightforward first-person narrative that eschews subtlety in favor of its lessons, while the artwork conveys the clean, efficient sense of a corporate brochure. However, it has the undeniable gravity of the truth and its inspirational message does come through loud and clear as Renteria, encouraged by his loving mother and grandfather, learns a sense of discipline in the army and employs a philosophy of hard work, a never-quit spirit, and a drive to live out what he describes as “the American Dream.” Grades 6-9. --Jesse Karp (BookList)

This inspirational title, produced by the business books–into–comics outfit Writers of the Round Table, adapts businessman Renteria's 2008 memoir about his hard-knock life into a punchy, easy-to-digest story. Renteria grew up with a single mother in a rough Los Angeles neighborhood during the 1970s, where he did everything that should have gotten him killed: running with gangs, selling drugs, the works. A stint in the military straightened him out, but didn't provide many prospects for employment. After knocking around in Chicago, Renteria convinced the owner of a laundry sales company to take a chance on him. Cut to years later, and Renteria is a wealthy salesman who has started his own company and now also mentors and lectures about getting out of the ghetto grind (his quick answer: hard work). Clester's art is more highly accomplished than is usually seen in true-life graphic adaptations, and while Renteria's tendency to gloss over the details can leave his story feeling sketchy at times, it's a work whose hard-won sense of hopefulness outweighs any hint of preachiness.
(Publishers Weekly)

Mi Barrio Book Trailer

*Ed Note: Schedule Correction was made for Friday June 24 & Monday June 27

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Seattle Event: Ethnic Heritage Council Presents Ethnic SpringFest

You're Invited!
Please join Ethnic Heritage Council for an evening of Friendship and Celebration!
Friday May 20, 2011 5:30pm
House of Hong
409 8th Ave South, Seattle
in the International District

Please join us & enjoy a sit-down dinner, entertainment, and a special honor for community member Tsering Chamatsang Yuthok.

To register for this event, go to http://www.ethnicheritagecouncil.org/ 
or call (206) 443-1410
or email

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Seattle Events: eSe Teatro presents Luís Alfaro's Electricidad at ACT

eSe Teatro: Seattle Latinos Take Stage 

Luís Alfaro's
a staged reading directed by Rose Cano
5/20 & 5/21
A Contemporary Theatre
700 Union St
downtown Seattle


Check out eSe Teatro at http://eseteatro.org
stay connected thru twitter & Facebook

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Get to Know: Ethnic Heritage Council, Seattle Washington

I'm super thrilled to share with you that I'm a newly elected member of the Board of Directors of Seattle's Ethnic Heritage Council.

If you've spent any amount of time in Seattle, you've likely seen the Ethnic Heritage Council at work through one of their many events that they produce or sponsor throughout the year.

With offices based in the Seattle Center, Seattle's cultural hub and home to the Space Needle, EMP, Science Center, Children's Theatre, and many more, the Ethnic Heritage Council is behind many of the festive events that liven up the Center House throughout the year.  Check out the beautiful event photo galleries.

EHC is probably best known for their Annual Naturalization Ceremony which, for the past 26 years has taken place on the Fourth of July, and during which thousands of new American citizens have been sworn in.

The Ethnic Heritage Council (EHC) of Seattle, Washington was established in 1980 and has grown in membership from a few individuals, to hundreds of ethnic and cultural organizations and individuals.

EHC's mission is to preserve and promote ethnic and cultural traditions, foster mutual understanding, enrich lives and celebrate our heritage.

I'm honored to have been invited to join the Board of Directors of the Ethnic Heritage Council, and I look forward to using my skills in Communications, PR, Marketing and Social Media to support this stellar and vital organization of our community.

Please visit the Ethnic Heritage Council website at http://www.ethnicheritagecouncil.org and get to know this fabulous organization dedicated to celebrating the ethnic diversity of our region.

Stay tuned to Musings for occasional updates on EHC events, such as the Ethnic Springfest on May 20, 2011 produced by Ethnic Heritage Council. As always, if you have any questions or comments, feel free to leave them in this post, or email me.

*All photos credit: Jal Schrof*

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Seattle Poetry Event: Rock Wilk's "Broke Wide Open" March 12, 2011

So here I am, putting these songs out into the universe for everyone to hear, and I hope that you feel them and enjoy them as much as I do.

Rock Wilk's
Broke Wide Open "Unplugged"
Seattle Premiere 
March 12, 2011
Sandbox Studio*15 McGraw St*Seattle*98109
(Queen Anne Hill)
tix $10 at the door or pre-purchase at: http://www.brokewideopen.com/home.html

About Broke Wide Open
Broke Wide Open was born from one man's quest to search for answers to his identity. Luckily for us, this man is Rock Wilk; a beautiful soul, a skilled poet and musician. Initially produced as a musical journey in form of an album, the one-man play was created while riding on the NYC subway system and explored issues of identity stemming from his personal history as an adopted child. A man who grew up with great admiration of, and love for, his adoptive mother, and a mystery for his biological mother.

I tried to reveal myself, to strip down naked and open my personal window, to let you see who I am, in hopes that you might allow me into your world, briefly, one song at a time.

About Rock Wilk
An actor, a playwright and a poet, New York City's own Rock WILK is also a socially and politically charged vocalist and an accomplished multi-instrumentalist. He creates all of this art while riding the subways of NYC. Along with being a Nuyorican Poet's semifinalist and 2010 runoffs qualifier for The Nuyorican's national team, Rock also was recently a featured performer for Amnesty International at an event for human rights.

My father and my grandmother were both great storytellers. Just sitting around after a meal with them was a gift. You would hear the most amazing stories. They both had this ability to make you hang on every word, to make you laugh until you cried.

He has worked as a studio and touring background vocalist for many years, most recently singing with the legendary Patti LaBelle and contributing vocal and horn arrangements to the Grammy Award winning Les Paul compilation album, LES PAUL AND FRIENDS.
Rock's music can also be heard on such TV shows as MTV's "The Real World" and "Making The Band", among others.

There were many times I didn’t think I was going to be able to complete this project, that it was just too difficult to get through, because I was digging so deep inside of myself.

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