Monday, November 2, 2009

2009 Midwest Tour!

The 2009 Midwestern HEN Tour was was a great success! Thanks to everyone who stopped in during the Saint Louis, Macomb and Joliet Shows!

Special thanks to Koji, Colleen Kattau and Jamie Yaman for adding your talent to the shows! You were all amazing and inspirational!

Because of the work done by these artists and the HEN Board, we have raised enough money to fund another artist-activist in the next award cycle. Way to go folks!


Thursday, October 15, 2009

The New HEN logo. . .

The New HEN Logo is in! And it looks AMAZING!

Thanks to Nicole at the Beehive Collective for such a wonderful design!!!

Monday, September 28, 2009

Anne Feeney at the G20!

Please check out this clip to see the kind of hell our awardee Anne Feeney raised at the G20 summit in Philly! Great job Anne!

Anne at the G20.

From Anne's Blog:

"I got to sing myself hoarse at the G20 (the tear gas didn't help, either!). Thanks to a small grant from the HEN Foundation, I was able to produce two concerts and perform at several G20 related events, including the People's Summit featuring the amazing Jeremy Scahill, a soggy health care rally organized by ACORN, and the big marches on the 24th and 25th. I can't say I'm shocked any more to see a city put under marshal law, but it was particularly depressing and distressing to see my hometown so dishonored. Over 4000 cops from around the country occupied my hometown and they brought a lot of expensive and dangerous coptoys ($20 million worth!) with them. I knew they'd find some excuse to use them all, and they did. Curious students and aimless bystanders alike in the university district were caught up in the hail of rubber bullets, pepper spray, OC spray, tear gas and batons wielded by marauding macho police.

The city of Pittsburgh refused permits to assemble at every opportunity. On September 24th 1000 folks gathered in Arsenal Park and asserted their First Amendment permit and began marching out of the park toward town.

The park was completely surrounded by cops from all over the country in full riot gear. They outnumbered the protestors. The cops gave up on what they were calling "kettling" us and let us leave the park. Moments later they began playing a tape recorded message ordering us to disperse. A helicopter overhead directed the cops to small groups of kids who were then peppersprayed and teargassed. It was repulsive.

The cops had been given the green light to behave this way by our complicit local leaders (Senator Jim Ferlo and City Council President Doug Shields were great, though) and courts who okayed their harassment in the days prior to this march. The police lawlessness just intensified over the next 48 hours. No group of kids was safe from their brutality.

In 1919 when my grandfather was organizing the "Great Steel Strike," historian William Z Foster observed - "The Constitution of the United States provides that not even Congress may abridge the rights of free speech and free assembly... however, in Pennsylvania the Constitution is considered as some sort of humorous essay." Some things don't change much!

There were a lot of creative responses to the Pittsburgh Police State. Here's a link to a brilliant video that features among other things, my favorites - the Hula Hoopers for Hope..

All told we spent in excess of $20,000,000 on security. The approximately 10,000 people who showed up to protest the G20 did a combined $20 - 50,000 of damage (according to the Police). We coulda bought a LOT of windows with the remaining $19,950,000 ... Meanwhile, the G20 will implement policies that will cause massive environmental degradation, starvation, shortages, riots, unemployment, fiscal instability and the elimination of essential social services around the world... and no cop will be on hand to stop that pillaging.

I sure hope that another world is possible."

Tuesday, September 22, 2009


Hey all! Contact the HEN Foundation at to order your tickets for the HEN tour shows!

The Lineup is great!

October 21, Way Out Club, Saint Louis, MO: Koji, None For Me, and Colleen Kattau & Some Guys

October 23, WIU Women's Center, Macomb, IL: None For Me and Colleen Kattau & Some Guys

October 24, UUCJ, Joliet, IL: None For Me and Colleen Kattau & Some Guys!

Hope to see you on the road!

Saturday, September 19, 2009

October tour

The HEN Foundation is going on tour through the Midwest in October. We will be taking it to the streets so if you're in the Midwest, catch us at one of these locations:

10/21/2009 The Way Out Club, St. Louis, MO (8pm)
w/ Koji, None For Me and Colleen Kattau & Some Guys

10/22/2009 UIS, Springfield, IL (8pm)
w/None For Me and Colleen Kattau & Some Guys

10/23/2009 WIU, Macomb, IL (8pm)
w/None For Me and Colleen Kattau & Some Guys

10/24/2009 WIU, Macomb, IL (8pm)
w/None For Me and Colleen Kattau & Some Guys

Tickets for these shows are $10 for General admission and $5 Students at UIS and WIU.

Hope to see you there!

Award Offerings. . .

The grant recipients for 2009 are officially:

Anne Feeney and the Beehive Collective. The recipients will be on tour in November from Atlanta to Columbus (Ft. Benning) for the annual School of the Americas Watch vigil/rally. This is going to be an exciting year.

Monday, August 10, 2009

Thank you community!

Congratulations community! We've raised enough money to fund all three artist activist applicants! Thank you so much for believing in the HEN Foundation. Together we will make a difference!

Craig Rouskey
President, HEN Foundation

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Thank you to the applicants. . .

Dear Friends of the HEN Foundation:

I am writing this letter with great news! The deadline for grant applications has come and gone and in this, our first year, we have received three applications from three very diverse artist-activists. The applicants represent different art forms and are working closely with social justice groups in their communities to develop lasting changes…changes that benefit us all. In the light of their efforts and in celebration of the HEN Foundation’s first year, we would like to fund all three grant applicants.

Throughout the course of the year the HEN Foundation has raised enough money to fund two artist-activists. We need your help to fund the third. It is you, the community, who make the work of artist-activists possible, and with your support you will help the following artist-activists continue their work. Please read about each applicant below as I’m sure there is an artist or cause that is worthy of your support. If not, forward this e-mail to those who may be interested!

The first applicant is Tracy Lang ( Using Urban Contemporary Dance Tracy works to expose sociopolitical issues facing women. She has chosen to work with Planned Parenthood of Georgia where she will conduct dance demonstrations, lectures and workshops to promote discussion of sexism, gender issues and social constructs pushing women to adapt to the culture of perfection. Tracy utilizes deep dance poetry with subtle humor to promote dialogue. Through her efforts Tracy will continue to provide young women the tools needed to evaluate difficult issues with deep personal relevance.

The second applicant, The Beehive Collective (, works with several partner organizations but has partnered with Coal River Mountain Watch for the purposes of this grant. Using their blend of graphic art and story telling, the Beehive Collective is working on a campaign to help prevent coal-harvesting, mountain top removal in Appalachia, the U.S. Southwest and Colombia. The collective’s collaborative drawings unify power, history, ecology, and resistance movements.

Last but not least is Anne Feeney ( Anne is a well-known singer/songwriter/labor rights activist/rabble rouser with an international reputation. For the purposes of this grant, Anne has proposed organizing spaces for spoken word, music, performance arts and puppetistas at the AFL-CIO conferences and the G20 summit held in Pittsburgh, PA in September, 2009. Throughout the month of September, Anne will be organizing the artists that help expose the evils of the G20 and promote labor rights in the U.S.

It is with great pride that I present these three applicants as potential HEN Awardees. Now, it is up to you, our community, to help support them. I am asking that you make a small donation to the HEN Foundation by visiting our website ( These artists and the causes they represent need your support.

Thank you in advance,
Craig J. Rouskey
President, the HEN Foundation

P.S. Stay tuned for more information on the Midwest HEN Tour presenting HEN Artist-Activists

Saturday, January 24, 2009

HEN Foundation Grant Application!

Hello HEN Supporters!

The Grant Application for the first award season is now available. For a copy of the application, please send us an e-mail at We will respond with a Word Document that you can fill out and mail, with a sample of your work to the foundation.

We hope to hear from you soon.


Saturday, August 23, 2008


“When the hen crows, the state will fall” Confucius

We all feel the need for music, poetry and theater which has the power to challenge oppression and help us to imagine creative alternatives. We understand the value of strong political performers and wish there were more of them. We hope that the ones we love and respect have the strength to continue, because we count on them to ignite our events, to energize our rallies, to make our fundraisers and benefits a great success.

Like most activists, political performers most often work double or triple time to contribute their creativity to movements for justice. Yet, relative to other forms of activism, even the most prolific political performers lack access to organizational or institutional funding. To sustain their efforts to provide high-quality artistic statements within our political movements, they rely on grassroots support from people like you and me.

  • The HEN Foundation stimulates, develops and sustains mutual support and collaborative advancement of grassroots activists, progressive social movement organizations, and artist-activists.

  • HEN raises and distributes funds to develop and promote an international community of artist-activists whose work furthers the causes of anti-oppression, cultural innovation and peace-with-justice.

  • HEN connects artists with small grants, coordinates nationally-touring political performance roadshows, connects progressive organizations with artist-outreach workers, and produces and distributes a yearly “WHEN THE HEN CROWS” CD compilation which chronicles the work of HEN artist-activists and provides an annual oral record of activist issues, struggles and victories through music, spoken word and spoken theater.

  • The HEN Foundation supports leadership of women and people of color within movements for justice. We prioritize our work with artists and organizations accordingly.


HEN has received 501(c)(3) status and hopes to be awarding grants by Spring 2009.

If you are interested in supporting our efforts to mobilize and sustain artist-activism, we welcome you to become a grassroots member, supporter or sustainer of the HEN Foundation. Contact The HEN Foundation for more information.

Also, please donate to our cause by clicking the Donate link on the left of the page!

Friday, August 22, 2008