I have mentioned before that one of the saddest things for me in the flooding of Cedar Rapids was the loss of CSPS/Legion Arts (Legion Arts is the organization; CSPS is the building). This organization is really the shining cultural light in Eastern Iowa. Here is how they describe themselves:
Based at CSPS, a restored landmark building on the edge of downtown Cedar Rapids, Legion Arts presents cutting edge art, music, theatre, film and other events at a variety of venues; supports young artists, experimental art forms and new ideas; and works to involve artists and the arts in the processes of community development and neighborhood building.
The building is in the midst of the New Bohemia Arts Center and the edge of the Czech village. Both areas were hard hit and much of them will be plowed under probably not to be rebuilt. CSPS, though, should be able to survive, and I’m happy to say that over the last month it has been re-emerging. Plans were under way for the Landmark festival before the flood, and with a lot of hard work, it was still able to go on, featuring music from around the globe. Most of the concerts were held in Greene Square Park in downtown Cedar Rapids, then the final few shows were held in the CSPS space, an exciting sign without a doubt. Here is there line-up of the event:
Thu Sept 11 Plastic People of the Universe (Czech Rep)
Thu Sept 18 Rachel Unthank (England), Little Cow (Hungary)
Fri Sept 19 Ray Blue (USA/Germany)
Sun Sept 21 17 Hippies (Germany)
Mon Sept 22 Munnelly (Ireland)
Tue Sept 23 Vieux Farka Touré (Mali), Chiwoniso (Zimbabwe)
Wed Sept 24 Lo Còr de la Plana (France)
Fri Sept 26 José Curbelo (Uruguay), Son de Madera (Mexico)
Sun Sept 28 Old Blind Dogs (Scotland)
Mon Sept 29 Waltz With Me Quartet (Norway/Sweden/ USA)
I saw Vieux Farke Toure and Chiwoniso, an excellent show despite Farke Toure’s being quite ill. I usually wouldn’t mention someone’s parents (as if that’s what makes someone famous) but this is the son of legendary Ali Farke Toure and he has embraced his father’s heritage, continuing Mali’s musical tradition. Chiwoniso was also a fine show, full of energy. They spoke a bit about the political situation of Zimbabwe and shared in Cedar Rapids pain, but the show was all energy and celebration. A good time, and a good sign for things to come. Welcome back Legion Arts!!