Chicago Boys, While We Were Singing, They Were Dreaming

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Chicago Boys, While We Were Singing, They Were Dreaming,

Malachi Farrell,

Project 22 Feb 2011-17 Apr 2011

Co-organised by Casco – Office for Art, Design and Theory and If I Can’t Dance, I Don’t Want to be Part of Your Revolution in collaboration with Dutch Art Institute / ArtEZ 
UTRECHT* Sat 19 March 19.00-22.00 Casco (Nieuwekade 213-215, Utrecht) 
ENSCHEDE Sun 20 March 19.00-21.00 Odd-Fellowhuis (Nicolaas Beetsstraat 44, Enschede)  
ARNHEM Wed 23 March 20.00-22.00 Dutch Art Institute / ArtEZ (Kortestraat 27, Arnhem) 
AMSTERDAM Fri 25 March 18.00-21.00 If I Can't Dance (Westerdok 606-608, Amsterdam) 
* In celebration of the Persion New Year Nowruz, Kurdish band Roger will close the 'Chicago Boys evening at Casco. Please also note the festivities at Kagadoor (Oudegracht 36) hosted by the Interculturele Theehuis
Tuesday 22 February 19.00-21.00 
Tuesday 1 March 19.00-21.00 
Tuesday 8 March 19.00-21.00 
Location: Casco (Nieuwekade 213-215, Utrecht) 
From 22 February on, Casco will function as the backstage of ‘Chicago Boys,’ whereby the band’s practice and rehearsals take place. Available, there will be the instruments and list of music videos as well as a selection of materials produced by ‘Chicago Boys’ activities so far. After the tour, the backstage will screen the educational videos made out of the documentation of the performances (in collaboration with the Dutch initiative ‘Persistent Vision’). On view until 17 April at Casco. For more information on the installation, please click here
‘Chicago Boys’ on tour in the Netherlands welcomes new members as well as new instruments (or the revival of old ones sleeping at home). Previous musical experience is not required! Contact person: Yolande (, +31 (0)30 231 9995) 
Casco and If I Can’t Dance present ‘Chicago Boys, While We Were Singing, They Were Dreaming’: a 1970s revival band and neo-liberalism study group, assembled by Kurdish artist and musician Hiwa K whose interests lie in different modes of informal knowledge. The band plays 1970s popular music songs from Afghanistan, Iran, Iraq, England, Bangladesh, Poland, the Netherlands, and Lebanon. The performances of the songs are alternated with associative presentations of archival material related to personal stories and appearances of neo-liberal policies.  
The ‘Chicago Boys’ consists of those who do not necessarily have musical experience but develop it together. From different professional and cultural backgrounds, they gather and dedicate a period of about two months to learn how to perform, while grappling with the questions of free market economy in their weekly study group sessions. The band continues its practice while new members from different locations join along the way.  
‘Chicago Boys’ was formed last year in London when Hiwa K took residency at Serpentine Gallery’s Edgware Road Project. They recently traveled to Wyspa Institute of Art on the Gdansk Shipyard in Poland. Upon invitation from Casco and If I Can’t Dance, ‘Chicago Boys’ now moves on to the Netherlands for a Dutch tour, searching for new members and locations for their performances, traveling from city to city. 
The name ‘Chicago Boys’ refers to a group of young Chilean economists who, after having studied with economist and ‘grandmaster' of free-market economic theory Milton Friedman at the University of Chicago, drove a neo-liberal economic policy in Chile under the dictatorial regime of Pinochet in the 1970s. ‘Chicago Boys, While We Were Singing, They Were Dreaming’ traces back the possible “affairs” (as Hiwa K puts it) between this first implementation of liberal economics and a number of parallel events happening at the time, such as the oil crisis and the US threat to attack Saudi Arabia. In addition, ‘Chicago Boys’ tries to understand the weakening of the left that manifested at the turn of the 1970s into the 1980s in different parts of the globe; a political tendency one can currently witness. All these developments are reflected upon through the lens of cultural dynamics, particularly those in the popular music genre. 
‘Chicago Boys, While We Were Singing, They Were Dreaming’ is an ongoing, collective and transnational project that attempts to practice an alternative model for exploring the globalization process and its impact on our daily culture. 
Bland Mehdi, Cihat Arink, Abbas Nokhasteh, Nabil Ahmen, Lawrence Abu Hamdan, Janna Graham, Helene Kazan, Amal Khalaf, Noura Sanatian, Rich Hall, Shimon Sakakibara, Sedar Amin, Peshrew Hamid, Tara Jaf (from London); Anne Hoffmann, Raid Alexander, Anton Kats, Hiwa K (from Berlin); Elvin Flamingo, Emilia Laskowska, Wojtek Chmielewski, Jacek Jewula, Natalia Grzymala, Tomek Baranowski, Rafal Stempczynski, Czeslaw Szultk and Nick Linnell (from Gdansk); Juan Pablo Macias (Mexico); Israel Encina and Carol Melo (Chile); Alexandra Indaco and Gabriel (Argentina). Members from the Netherlands so far include: Ali Authman, Juan K, Lona Rauf, Martijn Haan, Sander Linders, Nada Chourbaji, Taf Hassam, Alexandros Papamarkou, Giles Bailey, Chris Lee, Seungyong Moon, Constanca Saraiva, Yolande van der Heide and Binna Choi 
Tuesday 22 February, 19.00-21.00 
- Introduction on the history of ‘Chicago Boys’ by Hiwa K  
- ‘The Aural Contract Audio Archive’ presentation by ‘Chicago Boys’ member and London based artist Lawrence Abu Hamdan 
- Discussion & Rehearsal 
Tuesday 1 March, 19.00-21.00 
- YouTube evening (songs, films, video lectures, live talk) 
- Presentation by Sweder van Wijnbergen, professor of Amsterdam School of Economics (UvA): a short history of the original Chicago Boys from the 1970's, in relation to contemporary neo-liberalism 
- Presentation by Kees Hudig, Amsterdam based alterglobalisation activist 
- Discussion & Rehearsal 
Tuesday 8 March, 19.00-21.00 
- Online cooking session 
- Presentation by Kritische Studenten Utrecht (KSU) 
- Discussion & Rehearsal 
LIST OF MUSIC so far: 
Ahmad Zahir, Badeha Khalist (Afghanistan)  
Googoosh, Nime Gum Shude (Iran) 
Googoosh, Talagh (Iran) 
Bhupen Hazarika, Dola he Dola (Bangladesh) 
Tipi Zankoy Slemany, Zor Qzhi Zerd (Kurdish Iraq) 
Lady Pank, Kryzysowa Narzeczona (Poland) 
Bandal Family, Do You Love Me (Lebanon) 
Sami Klark, Take Me With You (Lebanon) 
Selda Becan, Ince Ince (Turkey) 
Ahmad Zahir, Badeha Khalist (Afghanistan) 
Tina Charles, Dance Little Lady Dance (UK) 
Henk en de Stainless Steelband, Wij Willen WW (Surinam) 
Sand Pebbles, Na-Eotteoke (South Korea) 
The Blue Diamonds, Waarom Huil Je Toch Nona Manis (the Netherlands, Indonesia) 
RSA Animate - Crises of Capitalism by David Harvey 
Origin of Palm Tree in Iraq 
Naomi Klein - Iraq: The Neoliberal Project 
YouTube study of the ‘Chicago Boys, While…’ member (sample) 
‘Chicago Boys’ gig in London 
'Chicago Boys, While We Were Singing, They Were Dreaming' was commissioned by Serpentine Gallery and first developed at the Centre for Possible Studies as part The Edgware Road Project.


22 Feb 2011-17 Apr 2011

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