Fiesta of Plurality / Miguel Iturria Savón

Host Antonio Rodiles and members of Omni Zona Franca

Over a hundred people attended the Fiesta of the Plurality on Saturday December 10, held at Primera (First Avenue) 4606 between 46 and 60, Playa municipality, Havana. The meeting was convened by Yoani Sanchez, leader of the Cuban Voices blogger platform and Antonio Rodiles, spokesman for the “State of Sats” audiovisual project and host of the event, turned into a space of freedom despite the steady rain and police espionage.

The event coincided with the celebration of Human Rights Day, banned in Cuba by the Castro military regime, whose political police arrested dozens of peaceful opponents in the previous days and prevented meetings, parades and concerts in the capital and other cities of the island.

Coming together at the Fiesta were representatives of various alternative projects, those who interacted with those present through exhibition stands with posters and brochures, CDs, meetings and journals. There were lectures, poetry readings, songs and other activities far from those touted by government spokesmen.

The promoters of OMNI ZONA FRANCA spent most of the session with their poems, songs and audio while displaying their beautiful posters for the Endless Poetry Festival, whose 2011 edition will be December 15-20, for which they conducted a press conference at “State of Sats” with Rodiles as moderator and questions from the audience, as well as the presentation of the program catalog.

OMNI ZONA FRANCA is a socio-cultural artistic project born in Alamar, east of Havana, in the mid-nineties. It is composed of poets, musicians, actors, dancers, designers, painters, photographers and producers of audiovisual performances who socialize ideas and actions in urban spaces. Endless Poetry was established in 1999. The slogans “If two people look at and recognize each other the world changes” and “Change ourselves, change the world,” lead their 2011 projects.

Among those attending were the writers Ángel Santiesteban and Orlando Luis Pardo Lazo; the singers Gorki Aguila and Ciro Diaz, arrested on Friday the 9th to prevent the concert of Porno para Ricardo; the journalists Reinaldo Escobar, Víctor M. Domínguez, Jorge Olivera and Pablo Méndez; and the graffiti artist El Sexto, the cartoonist Nile J. Preval Gonzalez, photographer Claudio Fuentes, the librarian Omaida Padrón, the lawyer Wilfredo Vallin, president of the Law Association of Cuba, the former diplomat Pedro Campos Santos and artists from OMNI and other projects who sang, recited and painted during the evening.

One of the most interactive projects was, a group of young people dedicated to “promoting Cuban music inside and outside the island,” a sort of virtual map with various integrated projects.

The Fiesta of Plurality held in the evening of Dec. 10 included a raffle with umbrellas for the winners and donations of magazines, CD, films and other audiovisual media and graphics given by Yoani Sanchez and friends of the site. It was reported by twitterers and bloggers in attendance.

December 19 2011