Category Archives: Cherry Valley
Rockford, IL is suffering from a decay of open mics and places where poets and the like have a place to share their abilities and talents. Although a couple still exist, Bookworm Cafe’s open mic and Rockford College’s open mic, there were more to choose from, and for a while, things were booming here.
Open mics and their crowds are up and down, that’s a part of the scene and the culture of cities. However, in my humble opinion, open mics and literary events create the culture and excitement that cities like Rockford, IL need. Open mics and literary events …
Alonzo Russell, co-founder & director of Fatally Unique, the dance crew that made it to the semi-finals of “America’s Got Talent”, will be a guest choreographer at this summer’s ArtsPlace program. It will be a “homecoming” of sorts. Alonzo was a youth apprentice on the ArtsPlace Dance Team when he was in high school. On his evaluation that first year he said “I love ArtsPlace. It’s like a family.” He will work with his former ArtsPlace teacher and mentor, Tamara Newquist.
My new venue, which used to be called “An Intimate Moment with Christopher D. Sims And Friends” has become a hotbed for jazz sounds, open mic poets, and networking.
I shortened the title of it, calling it “Christopher D. Sims And Friends.” And that it is!
Lots of community-oriented people are coming out to showcase their talents, or to come and simply listen.
An Intimate Moment with Christopher D. Sims And Friends is my latest venture into the local entertainment and variety show for the performance arts. Rockford’s Salvino’s, located at 7801 E. State St. at the Clock Tower Resort is my new partner.
We have a new night of poetry, jazz, spoken word, wine and food.
It is a warm, relaxed setting filled with kindred spirits and those needing an outlet or escape on a Sunday night. It is mellow with a cozy atmosphere.
Even in its storied history in Rockford, IL and northern Illinois, poetry and spoken word is still an underdog and overlooked art form.
Still loved and still praised, but there is an energy in this area that pushes poets and spoken word artists to work harder and for less often, in this part of the country and region. I don’t know what it is, but there is still a small, striving community of seasoned and up and coming writers here.