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Roy Kinsey Rehearsing A Westside Story: Legacy Project

Under the Dome with Roy Kinsey.

About the program

Program Location

N Chicago Room, Second Floor East

Chicago Cultural Center

78 East Washington Street, Chicago, IL

Daily 10:00 AM-5:00 PM

A Westside Story: Legacy Project is the first live listening session/performance of the in progress work of lyricist, and librarian, Roy Kinsey. Part listening session, part performance, and part album discussion, Roy moves through the space of the Chicago Cultural Center, giving audience members a rare look behind the veil into his creative process when constructing an album.

Kinsey’s 9th studio album, A Westside Story: Legacy Project due Fall 2024, firmly focuses on housing and growing up in an ever changing Chicago, rehashing the unfinished argument Dr. King began while residing in Chicago in the late 1960’s concerning the despicable housing conditions that so many in the city endured.

This In-Progress musical work captures a snapshot of Chicago in this new decade; one filled with uncertainty, where a new story is unfolding. Some completed songs on the album discuss the loss of friendship, unrequited love and survivors guilt, when one community member is forced to move due to the gentrification of their neighborhood and the other ends up in prison (Darius (Moonlight)), the hurt and trauma gay men experience and inflict navigating same sex relationships when they have histories of hurt while trying to love one another in marginalized and segregated parts of the city (Crossfire), ancestor veneration (Black), and a citywide conversation between a witness, kids who commit crime in the city, their parents, civilians and the obstacles of raising children in the city (Get Y’all Kids) respectively.

This self proclaimed audiobook is a living testament to the power of not only rap and libraries, but to the power of audacity. During MLK (Freedom Weekend), the Chicago Architecture Biennial and Roy Kinsey invite audiences to peer behind the veil into this rare, vulnerable and intimate creative process of sharing a new (in progress) album, developing and rehearsing the live performance, and discussing thoughts, themes, and creative decisions.

Participant

Roy Kinsey

Chicago, United States

Website

Roy Kinsey is an anomaly when it comes to tradition in his respective industries. Roy Kinsey is a black, queer-identified, rapper and librarian. Kinsey’s non-conformist ideology has informed his sixth album, KINSEY: A Memoir, which he proclaims as his best work yet. Following the still-poignant Blackie: A Story by Roy Kinsey, KINSEY: A Memoir, captures a sinister yet sincere and potent musical performance. In the album, Kinsey reflects on his early traumas that threatened to debilitate his belief in himself and his family’s abilities. It is the manifestation of a queer man, in a black body, coming of age in Chicago. Chicago-born and raised, Roy Kinsey is a librarian for Chicago Public Libraries.

Participant

WOJR

Cambridge, United States

Website

Established in 2013, WOJR is a five-person organization of designers that works holistically across projects and research to practice architecture as a form of cultural production. Our work extends across the globe and engages the realms of art, architecture, and urbanism. Geographically located in Cambridge, Massachusetts, WOJR maintains an integral relationship with the local and larger academic communities in various ways: William is an Associate Professor at MIT, where he has taught for a decade, and numerous WOJR team members are affiliated with Harvard GSD and other area universities as instructors and visiting critics. WOJR has lectured and led design workshops at various academic institutions around the country and world, including recently being included in the Porto Academy in Portugal. In recent years, WOJR has received growing recognition, which has resulted in commissioned projects that span the United States, from New York to California, and extend abroad to works such as a full-scale pavilion for the 17th International Biennale Architettura in Venice, Italy. Working globally, WOJR has become accustomed to the rewards involved in working with skilled and passionate collaborators from different parts of the world to create projects that are unique and responsive to their varied budgetary, cultural, and geographical contexts.

Venue

Chicago Cultural Center

Address

78 East Washington Street, Chicago, IL

Neighborhood

The Loop

Description

The Chicago Cultural Center serves as one of the main exhibition venue sites for CAB 5, featuring projects from more than 80 participants from ten countries. 

Opened in 1897, the Chicago Cultural Center is a Chicago landmark building operated by the Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events and is home to free cultural exhibits and programming year-round.

Chicago Cultural Center
Chicago Cultural Center
The City is the Site