4 Year Anniversary BONK!/ Urban League Fundraiser–Saturday, Oct. 27th




BONK! 49

6PM (doors open 5:30)

Dasha Kelly has performed spoken word and delivered creativity workshops to writers, youth, co-eds, executives, inmates and artists throughout the U.S.  She is founder and director of Still Waters Collective, an arts initiative that provides youth programming to local schools and community groups, as well as curates a series of performance art showcases for adults.   She’s been invited to perform on HBO’s Def Poetry Jam, in Opium Magazine’s Literary Death Match, at the National Performers Network Conference, with Grammy-nominated Angie Stone and a host of colleges, conventions and open mic venues.   Dasha’s first novel, All Fall Down, earned her a position on Written Word Magazine’s Top Ten List of Up-and-Coming Writers of the Midwest. A featured story from her latest collection of work, Hershey Eats Peanuts (Penmanship Books 2009), was a finalist in the Abbey Hill Literary Awards.  Recently, Dasha was listed on OnMilwaukee.com’s list of “Top 100 Coolest Milwaukeeans,” where she lives with her two daughters and a cat named Shkoobi.

Nick Demske is a rogue librarian, His first book is titled “Nick Demske” and it lifts its voice to the heavens in sweet, maniacal song.  Nick was featured in 2011 as one of fifteen emerging poets to watch for by Poets and Writers magazine and his book was chosen as one of the 10 Best Books of Poetry in 2010 by a Believer Magazine reader survey.  A year ago, he went on a month and a half-long, cross-country book tour that involved giving 43 readings, driving over 10,000 miles, having his vehicle searched for drugs by Kansas state troopers and sleeping in 5—count them, 5!—Walmart parking lots across the nation.  Is there anything more patriotic?  Probably.  However, Nick also curates the BONK! performance series in Racine, which is basically like Christmas every month.  You may visit him online sometime at his blog nickipoo.wordpress.com.  In fact, you are hereby contractually obligated to do just that.  Amen.

After dropping out of high school to hitch-hike the country, Brent Mitchell worked for five or six years as a cowboy in Texas. During that time he began playing his music in Texas, and soon he was playing it throughout the US, Mexico, and the UK. His kudos include a 2005 Grammy listing for his song Hand of God, and spots on PBS’s Texas Music Cafe, SXSW, and on a number of festivals including the Kerrville Folk Festival. His songs are included on the soundtrack of the movie Partners in Crime and have been recorded by Colin Boyd, Bonnie Whitmore, and other Austin and Nashville artists.  He has shared the stage and studio with a long list of top, Americana, blues, and country acts over the years. Of all these, he is especially fond of his work with jazz bass player Drew Phelps on Phelps’ debut, which they later performed in Texas and New York. He now resides in Kenosha with his wife Stephanie, who teaches at Carthage College, and his four children. Brent also has a band, the Brent Mitchell Trio, which is about to release a CD of live tracks from a recent performance in Texas.

The event will also have an open mic component mixed in throughout the night, with poets and musicians from the community sharing their own work.  The event is free and open to the public, though there is a suggested $10 donation.  There will also be potluck and bake sale goods available for purchase, with all the proceeds going to support the Urban League’s literacy programs.

Open mic participants will be given 5 minutes each to perform.  People wanting to participate in the open mic segment of the event are highly encouraged to preregister as early as possible for a spot by sending an e-mail to nick.demske@racinelibrary.info.  Please include your name and talent in the e-mail.  There are very few spots available so preregister early to ensure that you can participate.


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